Shottas hold Cup sway
PRO SHOTTAS Soccer Club reigned supreme when the 25th annual Barbados Cup football tournament climaxed at the National Stadium on Good Friday.
The local team won two of the four age categories for boys with hard-fought victories in the Under-15 and Under-17 divisions.
Parkside of England defeated last year’s champions Harris Paints Pinelands 1-0 thanks to a fine strike by Charlie Kerslake in the 27th minute to lift the Under-13 champions’ trophy.
In the Under-15 division, it took a moment of brilliance to separate arch-rivals Pro Shottas and Kick Start.
In the 34th minute, Torian Went curled a right-foot free kick from about 25 metres out into the far corner, to send the massive Pro Shottas posse into a frenzy.
Kick Start pressed for the equalizer but the Shottas defended brilliantly to earn a 1-0 victory.
The feature match of the evening saw several Under-17 and Under-20 national players in action. Empire were favourites as they went into the finals with a perfect record, while their opponents, Pro Shottas, stumbled during the group stage, going down 0-2 to Gall Hill.
Pro Shottas opened the scoring in the first minute when Most Valuable Player Rakim Lashley found Len-Ross Davis on the left flank. He unselfishly nodded the ball into the path of an unmarked Freddy Mulligan who scored from six metres.
Mulligan doubled Shottas’ lead in the 19th minute in almost similar fashion. A ball was played across the box and Mulligan pounced on it to stab home from close range.
Empire took a while to find their rhythm but when they did they were rewarded with a goal. In the 19th minute, the division’s best forward Rico Agard nodded a free kick into the bottom left-hand corner to cut the lead in half going into the break.
Empire had plenty of opportunities to level the score as Pro Shottas were out of sorts for some time but they scuffed relatively easy chances.
Shottas put the game out of Empire’s reach in the 49th minute when national Under-20 midfielder Jomo Harris converted from the penalty spot after Ramar Millar brought down Jalani Keizer in the area. The challenge gained Millar his second yellow card and his marching orders. Pro Shottas went on to win 3-1 and be crowned kings of the Under-17 division.
In the Under-19 division, which was decided on Thursday, Ellerton emerged champions. The women’s division was won by the National Sports Council.