Central slams 3-1 winner over defending champs Defence Force in league opener

Dwight Quintero (L) and Central FC managing director Brent SanchoA stunning finish by teenaged Dwight Quintero and an acrobatic item by Rundell Winchester, both in the second half on Friday, separated Central FC from Defence Force for a 3-1 come-from-behind win on the opening match of the 2013-14 Digicel Pro League.

Kerry Joseph headed the defending league champs, Defence Force, 1-0 in front in the 7th minute with a well-executed header off Kevon Carter’s cross from the left to beat a fully stretched goalkeeper Jan Michael Williams inside the bottom corner after referee Gyasi McDonald allowed play to continue following a foul on Samuel Delice by Elton John.

Defence Force goalie, Kevin Graham, later preserved his side’s advantage in the 17th minute with back-to-back saves.

The Army custodian did well in a one-on-one situation to cut out a strike by Johan Peltier who was played a neat through-ball by the 19 year old Quintero, and Graham recovered well to block out the rebound effort by Winchester.

But by the 27th minute the home side leveled the scores 1-1 from the penalty spot.

Central was awarded a penalty from a play involving both captains, when a cross by Jason Marcano struck the extended arm of Corey Rivers inside the area.

Marcano then confidently blasted a low kick past Graham to pull his team level.

The evenly contested match picked up pace in front of a packed Ato Boldon Stadium covered stand, backed by an entertaining rhythm section.

Then in the 67th minute, Pro League debutant Quintero and a bother to the Army defense, cracked a low strike from 23 yards out to fit the ball perfectly past Graham and just inside the upright to put Central up 2-1.

The former El Dorado Secondary East student enjoying a dream start to his professional career.

And the Terry Fenwick coached-Central were 3-1 by the 87th minute thanks to an acrobatic overhead strike by Tobagonian Winchester.

Graham contested Winchester outside the area for a high ball but was beaten by the bounce and the lanky forward, who had a few tries at goal prior, made no mistake in finding the open net.

And while Central had no problems finding the back of the net, Defence Force was clearly having a problem without its most efficient forward Devorn Jorsling.

Jorsling, currently on a promotional course towards the rank of Army lance corporal, is unavailable for coach Ross Russell for the month of September.

Central FC 3—1Defence Force
Jason Marcano 28’, Dwight Quintero 67’, Rundell Winchester 82’  ;  Kerry Joseph 7’

Central FC—21. Jan Michael Williams (G), 7. Jason Marcano (C), 2. Elton John, 3. Keion Goodridge, 9. Dwight Quintero (Yellow Card)(22. Keon Trim 87th minute), 10. Marvin Oliver(6. Toric Robinson 74th minute), 11. Darren Mitchell, 12. Jamal Jack, 13. Johan Peltier, 17. Rundell Winchester(23. Hector Sam 94th minute), 24. Akeem Benjamin (Yellow Card)

Unused substitutes—25. Javon Sample (G), 4. Omar Charles, 8. Shem Alexander, 15. Kaydion Gabriel

Coach—Terry Fenwick

Defence Force—1. Kevin Graham (G), 14. Corey Rivers (C), 4. Marvin Jones, 5. Devin Jordan(81. Adrian Welch 81st minute)(Yellow Card), 9. Richard Roy, 11. Kevon Carter, 16. Kerry Joseph(29. Jemel Sebro 70th minute), 17. Ross Russell Jr.(Yellow Card), 18. Sean Narcis, 20. Rodell Elcock Yellow Card), 32. Samuel Delice(8. Curtis Gonzales 54th minute)

Unused substitutes—25. Sheldon Clarke (G), 12. Josimar Belgrave, 34. Levi Serries

Coach—Ross Russell

Match Referee—Gyasi McDonald