Cavalier alive for Round Final despite draw
CATHERINE HALL, St James — Despite giving up two points when Montego Bay United (MBU) rallied for a draw with a late goal, Cavalier SC stayed in contention for a place in the Red Stripe Premier League second End-of-Round Final with four rounds still to be played.
A mistake by MBU's goalkeeper Jacomeno Barrett allowed Geovaunie Samuda to score into an unprotected goal, gifting Cavalier the lead in the 39th minute.
Dino Williams however restored parity and gave MBU a point and kept them in the race for the consolation final with an 85th-minute equaliser, his first goal of the season.
With the Monday night game still to be played, Cavalier led the second round with 13 points, followed by four teams, including MBU, on 12.
In the overall points table, MBU are third on 28 points, tied with second-place Portmore United and fourth-placed Arnett Gardens, the latter having played a game less. Cavalier are eighth on 26 points.
Sunday's game was lacklustre for long periods, but both teams appeared satisfied with the point.
Lamar Morgan, who spoke on behalf of Cavalier, told the Jamaica Observer a point away from home was good for them.
"MoBay United deserved a goal as they had us behind the ball for a long time."
Morgan said also that if they were to make an impact they would have to "stop giving up late goals".
Dr Dean Weatherly, the MBU coach, said three games in seven days, including one on Monday and another away to Portmore on Thursday, did not help, but denied that fatigue might have played a part in his team's flat performance.
"We had three very tough games in one week and it is difficult to maintain that high intensity game for that duration," he explained.
Weatherly, who said they still had their eyes on the incentive final, also told the Observer: "Cavalier defended well but we gave them their only chance of the game with a mistake."
The home team created the few scoring chances early in the game, Omar Gordon's eighth-minute chance being turned away for a corner by goalkeeper Gariece McPherson, while in the 30th Brian Brown missed from about 10 yards after a cross from Gordon.
Cavalier took the lead nine minutes later when Barrett, under no pressure, dropped the ball and Samuda pounced on it and raced away to slot into an unprotected goal.
The Kingston-based club then came out in the second half and tried to defend their slender lead, by dropping behind the ball, hoping to hang on for the win.
The ploy appeared to be working as despite the many chances created by MBU, including at one time forcing five straight corners, the western club was frustrated.
A tactical switch by Weatherly, who took off Gordon and replaced him with the attacking Graeme Green, and pushing Alan Ottey into attack, served to force the Cavalier defence back on their heels.
But MBU had to wait until the 85th when Williams, who replaced Kemiro James in the 69th, stabbed home a ball from just outside the six-yard area and past the scrambling McPherson.
MoBay United — Jacomeno Barrett, Fabian McCarthy, Cordel Simpson, Ladale Richie, Orlando McBayne, Dwayne Ambusley, Oliver Trail, Kemiro James (Dino Williams 69th), Alan Ottey, Brian Brown, Omar Gordon (Graeme Green 52nd)
Subs not used: J Watkins, K Kirlew, O Braham, D Carey, J Barrett, W Wilkinson
Cavalier — McPherson, Donovan Alvaranga, Geovaunie Samuda, Raymond Thompson (Conroy Johnson 90+4), Claudius Blackburn, Chad Bennett (Wayne Beckford 67th), Girvon Brown, Kirk Fletcher, Andre Forbes, Mitchily Waul (Dellon Wilson 60th), Ajuran Brown
Subs not used: W Beckford, E Scarlett, P Llewellyn
Booked: Forbes 45th
Referee: Gawain Scott
Assistants: Lloyd Edwards, Terrence McKenzie
Fourth Official: Nakassa Martin
Match Commissary: Tracey Reid3