St Lucia defeat Bajans 3-2

St Lucia were one goal down and staring defeat in the face when Linus Clovis and Gabriel Biscette netted two superb goals in the second half for them to register a 3-2 win over hosts Barbados.

The two sides met yesterday in the third and final Under-17 Caribbean Football Union (CFU) international friendly played at the Wildey, St Michael AstroTurf.

Barbados would have been in good spirits heading into the match after drawing the first game 1-1 last week, winning 2-1 on Sunday and looking to close out the series with another good performance in the match. But the visitors had other ideas.

Djal Augustin (left) of St Lucia cuts the ball back and away from Barbadian forward Nigel Griffith.
Djal Augustin (left) of St Lucia cuts the ball back and away from Barbadian forward Nigel Griffith.

The homeboys took an early 1-0 lead through Nigel Griffith in the 11th minute. But Bryant Polius eluded Cliff Gooding-Edghill inside the 18-yard box, created enough time and space, and slotted home past Barbadian goal-keeper Liam Brathwaite in the 38th minute.

One minute later the Tridents earned themselves a 40-yard free kick and made it count. Captain Kaeson Trench’s long range shot, well assisted by the wind, sailed over the head of custodian Atley Clovis and into the back of the nets for Barbados to regain the advantage at 2-1 leading up to half-time.

Barbados had a few key players like Niall Reid-Stephens and Aluko Callender who have travelled and played football with overseas clubs.

St Lucia were on the attack from early trying to stay alive in the match and after probing and searching they managed to find the equalizer in the 52nd minute when Clovis out-paced Barbados’ defence on the left flank and took a powerful shot that curled right of Barbados’ substitute goalkeeper Terry Graham and into the left far corner of the goal bars.

That certainly made the contest interesting from there on. But St Lucia would have the final say 20 minutes later in the 72nd when Simeon Hanorra who had been instrumental in most of St Lucia’s goal scoring opportunities, played a crucial part in the goal that sealed the win. Hanorra got past an injured Trench sent a magnificently curled cross in front the goal bars and Biscette’s header shook the nets.

That caused St Lucia’s players and management to erupt in celebration. Then to put Barbados at a disadvantage Sheran Hoyte was given a red card in the 92nd  minute. But my then it was all perhaps a bit too late for Tridents to make a comeback.

Coach Colin Harewood said the team comprising of more than 20 players will be cut before the week ends to the final 11 or 12 players that would go on to represent Barbados in group one of the CFU competition against hosts St Kitts, Dominican Republic and Cuba.

Assistant coach Ricardo Best said they should be able to top the group but before travelling abroad they needed to work on changing a few attitudes within the team.

He also noted that the main game they wanted to win was on Sunday which the boys managed to pull off. He added yesterday’s match was about giving the other players who did not get to play, a chance to show what they could do when called upon.

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