Smith penalty gives UWI winning start in Red Stripe Premier League
Dwayne 'Rick' Smith's 61st minute penalty ensured UWI started their second season in the Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) with a 1-0 win over Waterhouse, who started life without Jermaine 'Tuffy' Anderson, at the UWI Bowl yesterday.
UWI missed the semi-finals on goal difference last year and Smith, who transferred from Cavalier Soccer Club, was one of the players brought in the help the team make the next step and apart from a fine display in midfield, he was pleased with his team's effort and the three points.
"The guys worked really hard and fought to the end for the win. Last year they had a chip on their shoulders as the new boys, so they had something to prove today. It (win) wasn't pretty, but if we can play ugly and get three points until we get it together, I am fine with that," he said.
'Rick, as he is commonly called, knows why he was brought to the club and he's ready to step up to the plate.
"I want to help them get better. My role in the team is to provide some well needed experience and just add to what they did last year and ensure I match or surpass it by working hard and helping my team mates to be efficient and get three points every week," he continued.
The former Meadhaven star is eyeing at least 10 goals and 12 assists this season, but insist that anything they achieve will be down to teamwork.
"I'd like a minimum of 10 goals and 12 assists. The team is working very hard and it pushes me to work harder, but I can't do it by myself. I am looking to make my presence felt and show my character by scoring goals and assisting and showing my colleagues what I'm about," he said.
Both teams had good chances in the game, with Andre Bernal and Anthony Greenland coming close for the hosts, Rafiek Bryan had Waterhouse's best chance.
UWI took the lead in the second half against the run of play, after Waterhouse had wasted two great chances.
Bernal broke away and was fouled inside the area and Smith calmly dispatched the penalty for the game's only goal.
Waterhouse's coach, Marvin Tate, said they need their experienced players to guide this young squad of players.
"We need our experienced players leading the way, where these (young) players are concerned," he said.