STETHS keep their cool to make it seven in a row
In a game with several twists and turns, St Elizabeth Technical (STETHS) used their vast experience to prevail in the end and reached their seventh straight ISSA-FLOW Ben Francis KO final at Manchester High yesterday.
The seven-time finalists were inspired by goalkeeper Kenroy Wallace and his captain 'fantastic' Chris-Andrew Dixon, who could do no wrong in yesterday's 4-3 semi-final sudden-death penalty kick victory over the highly fancied Clarendon College.
STETHS appeared to have the game sewn up when they took the lead in the ninth minute with a Demar James goal then went 2-0 up in the 52nd minute when Glendo Gopaul scored from the penalty spot.
Creggton Charlton, the Clarendon College captain, cut the lead in half in the 60th minute and with seconds left in added time, Shemar Hunter scored a wonder goal to tie the scores and send the match into extra time.
Seven minutes into the extra time, Charlton struck again to give Clarendon the lead for the first time at 3-2. Once again, with mere seconds remaining, STETHS would respond and Alex Thomas levelled the scores at 3-3.
Wallace denied Shande James, who took Clarendon's second penalty kick in the shoot-out, before saving from Charlton to send the game into sudden-death at 3-3.
In sudden-death, Hunter missed, leaving Dixon to rifle his spot kick into the back of the net to thunderous roars from the STETHS supporters.
"This is why this team is so hard to beat," STETHS' technical director Downswell noted. "We will fight to the very end."
Paul Davis, the Clarendon College head coach, said he was bitterly disappointed but praised his team.
"I am disappointed we never held on for the win, but it was a beautiful game and we were just unfortunate in the penalty kicks," Davis said.