CHRIST CHURCH WEST-CENTRAL gave the crowd something to cheer for.
Well, Shane Cox really.
The former national junior scored the game’s decisive goal in the 73rd minute as the home side maintained their perfect start to the David Thompson Memorial Constituency Council’s Football Classic despite wasting several chances in Friday’s 2-1 victory over St Lucy at Briar Hall, Christ Church.
It was the second win in as many games for the Christ Church side, who put themselves in a good position to make the 16-team knockout round after moving to the top of their zone.
The position isn’t as encouraging for St Lucy though. They might have the same six points, but the men from the north have also played their full allotment of four matches while Christ Church West-Central and St Michael West-Central both are unbeaten with two games in hand.
The hosts almost surrendered control of the zone after blowing countless scoring opportunities although dominating possession of the football.
It didn’t help matters any that Adrian Chase was at his sublime best either, with Christ Church West-Central being denied at least six occasions by the one-time Barbados custodian.
He even stuffed Cox during the sequence that led to the home side’s first goal, only to see Dario Lewis tap in the ensuing parry.
However, there was no stopping Cox when it mattered most.
Pressing hard for the game-winner, the hosts finally put together a run which started down the right flank and ended with Cox receiving a beautiful cross at the far post. The talented forward still had to avoid two defenders before hitting a powerful left-footed blast past Chase at an extremely acute angle.
The stunning strike broke an unlikely first-half deadlock that came courtesy St Lucy’s Antone Corbin at the stroke of half-time when he ran on to the end of a perfect Antonio Griffith long ball to tap the ball past keeper Oliver Hinkson.
This was after Christ Church West Central initially took the lead in the 13th minute following Cox’s spectacular solo run that ended with Lewis’ go-ahead score.
Earlier, teenaged super sub Khalil Gill scored seconds after entering the game as Christ Church East-Central earned a 1-1 draw against St Joseph in the opening match.
St Joseph had taken a surprising lead in the 24th via a perfectly struck free kick from Adrian Mayers that beat a diving Justin Johnson to his right. But Gill capitalized on a goalkeeping error in the 74th minute by tapping in a needless parry.
At Eden Lodge, St Michael, Raymond Hope, Juleus Payne, Romario Holligan and Zeco Greaves all scored in the second half to give St Andrew a 4-0 win over Christ Church West, while Andre Pinder netted the game’s lone goal in St Michael North’s 1-0 victory against St Peter.
St John blanked St George South 3-0 while St James North rolled to a 4-0 drubbing of St Philip South in the other game at Trents, St James.