FORMER champions Jamaica College (JC) made a winning start to their season with a close 1-0 win over Camperdown in Group B action of the ISSA/Digicel/Gatorade Manning Cup football competition at Bellevue Field yesterday.
Steffen Logan headed in the winner in the 80th minute as JC join St Jago, Camperdown and Waterford High on three points.
However, both Camperdown and Waterford, who whipped Mona 6-0, have played one more game in the six-team group.
Playing in front a decentsized crowd at the Bellevue Field, both JC and Camperdown, two fancied teams in the Manning Cup, failed to deliver the kind of performance that would send shivers down the spines of the other title contenders.
But both teams were steady and although not flashy at this moment in the season, were organised enough to suggest that they wont be any pushovers either.
JC's assistant coach Delroy Brown, said his team was a little flat playing their first match of the season.
“The boys were a little bit nervous and jittery so you can give them the benefit of the doubt for this type of performance,” said Brown.
Camperdown's coach Christopher Bender praised his young team and thought they played well enough to leave with a point.
“We start with a lot of desire and purpose but in the middle part JC took the ascendancy and we knew they had a strong midfield and we tried to stifle that. But we conceded late and I knew we could have got something out of it,” said Bender.
Meanwhile, in Group C, defending champion St George's College got off the mark with a come-from-behind 5-1 beating of Denham Town at the Edward Seaga Complex.
St George's, the reigning schoolboy Triple Crown champions, are second in the group on four points behind the impressive looking Hydel High on goal difference. The latter hammered Dunoon Technical 8-0, courtesy of four goals from Tafarel Crosdale and a double from substitute Shanori White.
Cumberland High, also on four points, are third after their 1-0 win over Clan Carthy High, who remained in fourth with three points.
In Group D, Spanish Town moved to the top with four points following their 4-2 win over Holy Trinity, while Ascot defeated Jonathan Grant 3-1 to also be on four points from two games.
The competition continues today with one of the title favourites Charlie Smith Comprehensive hosting Kingston College in Group G action.
Both schools are coming off impressive first round wins with KC beating Meadowbrook 7-0 and Charlie Smith going one better after mauling Ardenne High 8-0.
In the other group matches, Ardenne play Pembroke Hall and STATH travel to Meadowbrook High.
In Group F, Wolmer’s Boys take on Donald Quarrie; Jose Marti tackle Oberlin High and St Andrew College play Kingston Technical High.
Calabar High will be hunting win number two when they play Haile Selassie in Group D, while Bridgeport take on Innswood and Tivoli Gardens travel to St Mary's College.