Gritty UWI deny Arnett Gardens in the Jungle

Tuesday, February 19, 2019



A gritty performance from the University of the West Indies (UWI) FC saw them come from two goals down on Sunday to earn a 2-2 draw and deny hosts Arnett Gardens for the third time this season.

It was the seventh point of the season that the Mona-based team were earning against the former champions, who they beat in both the first and second rounds of the Red Stripe Premier League.

Michaelous Martin put Arnett Gardens ahead after just four minutes, and it appeared that the Jerome Waite-coached team had all but sealed the points four minutes into the second half when Jamiel Hardware tucked home a rebound to make it 2-0 to the “Junglists”.

But Reggae Boy Fabion McCarthy began the UWI fightback when he scored from almost out of nothing before substitute Patrick Brown found the equaliser to earn his team a crucial point in the race for a spot in the play-offs.

Most of the crowd was still filing into Anthony Spaulding Sports Complex when Martin let fly from about 25 yards. The shot seemed to catch UWI custodian Nicholas King flat-footed, as the ball sailed into the roof of the net for 1-0 to the home team.

UWI tried to respond through Ryan Miller, who saw his stinging drive palmed away to the right by Damian Hyatt. Rochane Smith responded quickest to the rebound but his follow-up shot was blocked by Ramone McGregor, who came up limping after the challenge.

A neat team move from UWI saw a series of slick passes carve open the Arnett Gardens defence and presented Miller with yet another chance. The first shot was blocked before Miller skied the rebound as the hosts maintained their one-goal advantage.

Kareem Manning then had a glorious opportunity to get his name on the scoresheet when Miller rolled the ball into his path inside the box, but the overlapping defender could only steer the ball wide of the gaping goal.

UWI were almost undone when there was hesitation in their defence and the ball rolled perfectly to Lennox Russell on the right side of the box, but an alert King left his line in a flash to stifle the shot from the Arnett Gardens striker and avert the danger.

There was time enough for UWI to create one last chance in first-half stoppage time, but no one in white was alert enough to get on the end of Manning's cross and the ball rolled across the face of goal and harmlessly into touch.

Arnett Gardens came close to doubling their advantage at the start of the second half as a header by Jabeur Johnson from a corner kick went just wide.

It would not take very long for Waite's men to make it 2-0 however, as Hardware was in the right spot to fire home after a Fabian Reid shot rebounded off the right upright.

Ten minutes later McCarthy brought his team back in the contest when his snap shot from outside the area flew past a hapless Hyatt and into the far corner of the net.

With their tails up and sniffing a chance to get something out of the game, UWI turned on the pressure on the hosts. Andrew Peart then rang the changes and brought on the enigmatic Patrick Brown to good effect.

The left-footer immediately made his presence felt before significantly impacting the game when he twisted and turned his marker before unleashing a thunderbolt from inside the six-yard box, which Hyatt could do nothing to stop, making it 2-2 in the 74th minute.

Both teams then went for the winner in the final 15 minutes of the game.

Reid came close for Arnett Gardens when his hooked effort went into the UWI side netting befor substitute Stephen Barnett almost snatched it for UWI in the final minute after he outpaced his marker down the left, but his flicked shot with the outside of the right boot went into the side netting as well.

The result sees Arnett Gardens remain in fifth position on 41 points, while UWI continue to hold onto the final play-off spot in sixth place on 39 points.

In the other late kick-off on the day, hosts Harbour View and Dunbeholden played to a 1-1 result.

Teams: Arnett Gardens — Damion Hyatt, Ramone McGregor, Jabeur Johnson, Jamar Martin, Rickardo Oldham (Tamar Edwards 61st), Zhelando Barnes, Lamard Neil, Jamiel Hardware, Fabian Reid, Michealos Martin (Vishnul Harris 45th), Lennox Russell (Ronlado Cephas 87th)

Subs not used: Mikhail Harrison, Jahwahni Hinds, Paul Wilson, Ronaldo Wright

Booked: Jamar Martin (24th)

UWI FC — Nickolas King, Michael Heaven, Ramoun Reid, Kareem Manning, Kemar Flemmings, Rochane Smith, Ryan Miller, Fabion McCarthy, Courtney Allen (Patrick Brown 66th), Shuwayne Barrett (Dwayne Smith 83rd), Andrea Barnal (Stephen Barnett 87th)

Subs: George Brown, Pagiel Brown, Jerondy Henry, Javoy Belnavis

Booked: Flemmings (51st), Brown 74th, McCarthy 84th

Referee: Okeito Nicholson

Assistant referees: Jermaine Yee Sing, Rolazo Bennett,

Fourth official: Steffon Dewar

Match commissioner: Andrew Payne