STATHS blank Papine 3-0
St Andrew Technical High School (STATHS) rolled out their ISSA/Digicel Manning Cup 2018 schoolboy campaign caravan with a relaxing 3-0 win against Papine High at Bumper Hall yesterday.
Second-half goals from Warner Brown (42nd), Anthony Nelson (56th) and Akeil Leachman (62nd minute penalty) anchored STATHS to a win that encouraged coach Phillip Williams that his players are on the right track to continue their challenge from last year.
“To tell the truth I went into the game a bit apprehensive. We played Papine twice last season and had the better of them, but if you ask me the playing field is being levelled where schoolboy football is concerned as all programmes are on the up. So there are no teams that one would want to take lightly, which means you just have to stick to your game plan and approach them on this occasion as they are our equals.”
Losing his opening game opposite number Mark Scotland noted that the late start of preparing the team, “and for this we were not at a hundred percent. What I am certain of, this team is going to get better as the season lengthens. Today we came here with a game plan but we made some mistakes, lost concentration and against good teams when you lose concentration your opponents are going to punish you and we were punished today.”
Notwithstanding, Coach Scotland saw “there were semblances of moves in our play that give us hope that we will improve to be very competitive. But we just have to keep our focus”.
Playing at home STATHS wasted little time in demonstrating that they were the better team, but were wayward in their play. This gave Papine the opportunity to show a glimpse of what could have been with better preparation as their linchpin striker Rushike Nelson threatened, but the better balanced STATHS defenders, including goalkeeper Jevarn Walters, kept him out.
Despite STATHS's first-half dominance the teams went to the break even. The home returned in a more positive mood and within two minutes of the restart they took the lead through Brown. The goal raised the ante, but it was STATHS who went further ahead through a Nelson strike.
Even two goals down Papine continued to show fight but they made too many errors, especially at the back, and gave up a needless penalty to close off the game.