JC off with a bang in quarter-final round

...Wasteful KC let it slip against robust Calabar

BY HOWARD WALKER
Senior staff reporter
walkerh@jamaicaobserver.com

Sunday, October 22, 2017

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Defending champions Jamaica College (JC) blanked Bridgeport High 2-0 to take control of Group H of the ISSA/FLOW Manning Cup quarter-final round, while Kingston College (KC) were held 1-1 by Calabar High at the Stadium East field yesterday.

JC moved to the top of Group H on three points, two ahead of both KC and Calabar on one each, with Bridgeport pointless with two sets of games remaining.

In the curtain-raiser, in-form 16-year-old Shaniel Thomas notched his eighth goal of the season, opening the scoring for JC in the 49th minute. The young striker rammed home from close range following a brilliant solo run by Tyrek McGee.

Malik Howell then sealed victory in the 60th minute firing home from an acute angle with a low shot that squirmed under the goalkkeeper Jovaine Bell.

Winning coach Miguel Coley was pleased with the victory as JC stayed on course to defend their title.

“It was important that we had a good first half, (and) we wanted to score at least one or two goals, but it didn't come. But second half, it was very important that it came at a time when Bridgeport didn't have the ascendency and we did that and got a goal, “ said Coley.

“In this round goals really matter, so we will have to reflect on this game and make decisions from that, “ he added.

Bridgeport High coach Jason Grant believes his team still has a chance of making the semi-final with two games remaining.

“We will have to correct all the mistakes that we made today. We lost the discipline and concentration, so we really have to look in that department,” said Grant.

Meanwhile, title favourites KC failed to win for only the second time this season and dropped two crucial points against fierce rivals Calabar High.

Rashawn Mackinson gave KC the perfect start firing home in the very first minute of play for his 15th goal of the season.

But the green-and-black standard-bearers from Red Hills Road never relented and battled their more fancied opponents all the way to the end for a deserved point.

But the turning point in the game came when Omar Thompson missed a penalty in the 43rd minute that would have doubled KC's advantage. But just two minutes later, it proved costly as Calabar would equalise in the 45th minute. A long throw in was headed on and Orane Ferguson tapped home at the back post.

KC, who were not allowed to play their typical free-flowing game, but missed further chances, again with Thompson's hitting the crossbar in the 85th minute.

Calabar's Head Coach Lijyasu 'Shaka' Simms had high praises for the highly touted KC.

“We respect the KC team, but we don't fear them. I told my boys it's going to boil down to man-to-man marking. We practised that all week and it paid dividends,” said Simms.

“I just have to lift my hats off to my players and take it from here,” he added.

Calabar will next play JC on Tuesday at Constant Spring, while KC will travel to the Spanish Town Prison Oval to take on Bridgeport High.

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