St Andrew’s night
FIRST, they won the award for Best Team On Parade.
Then, St Andrew rained on St John’s parade.
Juleus Payne’s 83rd-minute strike helped St Andrew earn a hard-fought 2-2 draw against St John in the opening round of the David Thompson Memorial Constituency Council’s Football Classic at the Gall Hill Playing Field, St John, on Sunday night.
St Andrew’s day began on a good note when they edged out 29 other Constituency Council teams to be adjudged the Best Team On Parade.
St Michael North East and Christ Church East both received a standing ovation for braving the rain when all of the other teams ran for cover.
And St Andrew’s day took a turn for the better when, in just the sixth minute, St John defender Orlando Gittens inadvertently turned the ball into the
back of his net as he tried to make a clearance.
St John powered forward in search of an equalizer, Zeco Marshall being their main threat with his pace and crafty turns causing lots of problems for St Andrew’s defenders.
It would be Romario Harewood’s superb strike in the 30th minute which put St John back on level terms, much to the delight of the large crowd.
His first shot from 20 yards away was blocked by a defender but the ball rolled perfectly back into Harewood’s path. This time, his powerful low shot cannoned into the back of the nets, with keeper Kemar Grecia helpless to stop it.
It wasn’t long before Marshall was at it again, this time using his pace to outrun two St Andrew defenders and get into the penalty box, but he was felled by Dario Alleyne, leaving the referee without a choice but to point to the penalty spot.
Harewood stepped up, but Grecia pulled off a brilliant save, turning the low shot around the right post.
Gittens then made amends for his earlier mistake, turning the resulting corner past Grecia with a flicked header which beat the keeper at his near post on the stroke of half-time to give St John the lead.
Both teams muffed several chances in the second half, with Marshall twisting and turning past three defenders before inexplicably firing his shot wide to waste St John’s best chance.
It was an opportunity St John would regret, with Payne’s late strike ensuring that the teams shared the spoils.
Earlier in the evening’s first game, a double strike from Renaldo Seale, in the 56th and 83rd minutes, gave defending champions The City a 2-1 win over St Joseph.
Raymond Kellman scored the lone goal for St Joseph in the 60th minute.