There were?goals galore in the Digicel Premier League football at the National Stadium on Sunday night with two individual hat-tricks in separate lopsided victories.
Dwayne Stanford celebrated his 31st birthday in style with a hat-trick as title favourites Weymouth Wales humiliated winless defending champs Meridian Castrol Youth Milan 5-1 for their fifth straight victory to move to a maximum 15 points.
National player Carl Joseph also showcased his goal-scoring ability with his first Premiership hat-trick to lead Claytons Kola Tonic Notre Dame to a 5-0 blanking of Pinelands.
And Mackeson Brittons Hill edged neighbours Dayrells Road 1-0 in a hard-fought final match after lanky Travis “Angus” Coppin, who should also have had at least a treble but was repeatedly foiled by goalkeeper Andre Small, rose above sweeper Jomo Brathwaite to nod in the winner in the 32nd minute.
Wales, with goalkeeper Bentley Springer parrying away a fierce free-kick from Norman Forde early in the exchanges, opened the floodgates in the 17th minute when teenaged striker Kemar Headley calmly placed a pass from Zaeehaeus Polius into the far corner.
It became 2-0 at half-time as Stanford pushed in a rebound from a Headley shot which deflected from the grasp of Milan’s experienced custodian Adrian Chase in the 22nd minute.
Paul Lovell got Wales’ third goal in the 73rd minute, beating Chase with a neat flip to climax a slick exchange of passes with Polius, while Stanford collected a through ball from Lovell and drilled a low left-foot shot home in the 75th minute.
Three minutes later, Stanford completed his treble, hitting over Chase, who conceded five goals for the first time in his Premiership career, after successive shots from Headley and Polius ricocheted off the cross bar.
Milan, now with three losses and a draw, got a consolation goal, their first of the season in 360 minutes of soccer, in the 79th minute when Ramuel Miller tapped in a cross from fellow substitute Ricky Barnes.
In the first game, the Dames rushed to a 4-0 half-time lead as the skilful 23-year-old Joseph opened the scoring as early as the fourth minute.
Defender Kimoi Seale headed in the second after 22 minutes from a John Parris long throw-in, forcing Pinelands to immediately replace an out-of-sorts Dane Ellis with Jamal Hinds.
But four minutes later, Pinelands’ woes continued when Parris split their leaky defence for Zico Edmee to make it 3-0 with a well-placed left-foot into goalkeeper Romayne Primus’ far corner. Joseph got his second goal in the 30th minute when he ran onto a through ball from veteran midfielder John Hawkesworth and slotted past Primus.
The scoreline remained that way until the 90th minute when Joseph beat the off-side trap, dribbled the advancing Primus and placed his shot into the open goalbars.
In another game at Orange Hill, St James, Paradise edged Gall Hill 1-0 in their all-Christ Church encounter, through a late 88th-minute strike from last year’s top goalscorer Armando Lashley.