CARIB CUP

St. Kitts and Nevis’ Roy Charles (# 19 ) prepares to tackle St. Lucia’s Germal Valcin (# 5) for the ball.
Keith Dawson

Under hazy skies, Team Guyana and Team St. Kitts and Nevis celebrated the Independence weekend with New York Caribbean Cup wins at the Thomas Jefferson High School Field, 12508 Flatlands Ave., Brooklyn.

With the sun trying to break through all afternoon, Team Haiti opened the three-game schedule with a lazy 1-1 exhibition draw with the U-23 Brooklyn Soca Lions. It was really a good show by the young lions who got their goal by way of Victor Ogunwale.

Ogunwale attends Thomas Jefferson High School and was recently selected to travel to Spain with a select PSAL team. While in Spain the group is expected to visit super clubs Barcelona and Real Madrid.

Game two between Team Guyana and Team Trinidad and Tobago was extremely entertaining and just when the teams looked like sharing the points the Golden Jaguars came up with the winner.

The Soca Ballers opened the game with only eight players and in the fifth minute Team Guyana took advantage of their man advantage when goalkeeper Marcus Maurice was found in no-man’s land and watched helplessly as Roger Cambridge’s shot rolled into the back of the net.

Shortly after Quame Holder arrived to strengthen the Soca Ballers. Despite playing at a disadvantage, Team Trinidad & Tobago was a lot more organized in their attacks and soon equalized when Conrad Smith curved a shot pass the outstretched hands of goalkeeper Alvin Ashby.

The Soca Ballers were playing at a high level now and with the clock racing toward half time Roger Cambridge was called for a reckless tackle on Najja Forbes inside the six-yard box. Up stepped Jelani Felix to bury the penalty to the right of Ashby and send the Ballers into a 2-1 lead. There was no further scoring as the Soca Ballers went to the break leading 2-1.

Soon after resumption, the Golden Jaguars equalized on a goal that was initially waived off by the referee. A scorcher from Kwesi Quintin was blocked by a defender standing inside the goal line. Naturally, the Golden Jaguars protested the referees call as the assistant referee had his flag raised. On consultation with the assistant, the referee changed his call and pointed to the center circle.

It was team Trinidad & Tobago’s turn to protest the call but the game was now tied at 2-apiece.

Team Guyana was desperate for a win and certainly could not go home from this game without maximum points having played most of the game with a two-man advantage. They got the all-important winner when a ball from a melee in front of the goal found the feet of Kwesi Quintin whose tame shot evaded a defender and slid inside the right upright.

It was all over for the Soca Ballers who learned a harsh lesson this afternoon. And that is, although playing well, you cannot play a top Caribbean Cup team with less than your full complement of players. Final score — Team Guyana 3, Team Trinidad & Tobago 2.

Much was expected from the final game of the afternoon between former champions Team St. Lucia and Team St. Kitts and Nevis.

For much of the first half, the teams remained locked at zero as both strived to gain the all-important go-ahead goal. However, in the 25th minute, Nathaniel Brown picked up a ball down the right side, cut to his left drawing the defense with him and then unleashed a shot beating goalkeeper Chad Amari Phillip to his left.

Following the break and with Team St. Lucia kicking toward the Flatlands goal, Rashid Duncan equalized for the Lucians when his shot beat Malik Liburd.

The game became a bit chippy during the second half as the teams battled for the winner and with about 10 minutes remaining, the Lucians lost Kerwin Edwin for a reckless tackle.

With the score locked at one apiece, the attacks and counter attacks became more furious as the teams hunted full points. Unfortunately, in a furious defensive stand John Perry Joseph was shown a second yellow inside the six-yard box that gave referee Christian Colmenares no alternative but to point to the spot. Up stepped Viceroy Nelson to bury the shot and send the Sugar Boys home with a 2-1 win.

Games Sunday, July 10, 2016

1:30 pm – Team St. Vincent & the Grenadines vs Team Panama

3:30 pm – Team Grenada vs Team Dominica

5:30 pm – Team Jamaica vs Team Trinidad & Tobago

Guyana’s Captain Roger Cambridge challenges Trinidadian Makesi Lewis #3 for the ball.
Keith Dawson

More from Around NYC