Tue | Nov 24, 2020

U-14 Reggae Girlz a work in progress

Published:Wednesday | August 7, 2019 | 12:30 AM

The Jamaica Under-14 Reggae Girlz left it to the dying moments of the game on Monday before they snatched victory from the hands of the Martinique players as they won their first fixture in the Caribbean Football Union Girls U-14 Challenge Series at the UWI-JFF Horace Burrell Centre of Excellence.

A hat-trick from class striker Natoya Atkinson in the 35th, 26th, and 70th minutes proved too much to handle for their opponents as the young Reggae Girlz ran out 3-2 winners.

Lauryane Petit-Frere in the first half added time, and a Kanelle Thomas penalty in the 63th ­minute scored what would prove to be Martinique’s consolation.

After the match, Atkinson stated that scoring the hat-trick was no surprise to her after coming off an excellent season in schoolgirl football.

“I feel fine because this is not the first that I’m scoring a hat-trick,” said Atkinson. “In the girls’ school football league, I scored 39 goals, so it’s not the first for me.”

UP FOR CHALLENGE

Jamaica faces the Dominican Republic today, who won their first fixture with a dominant 5-1 victory over Bermuda. Atkinson said she is up for the challenge and is looking forward to a win, a sentiment echoed by the team’s coach, Dexter Gillmore.

Gillmore applauded his team’s resilience on Monday for coming away with the win and feels that the team is a work in progress that will continue to improve.

“We didn’t play the best, but it was good enough to get the win. We’re still a work in progress,” said Gillmore. “We’re going to come out and play the football match. Just as how we prepared for the match against Martinique, we’ll be preparing the same way.”

With regard to the matchup against the Dominican Republic, Gillmore simply stated that the team’s expectation is to win the match and the tournament overall.

The match is the second fixture of a double-header today, with Martinique taking on Bermuda at 2 p.m. and Jamaica and the Dominican Republic set to kick off at 4 p.m. Both matches will be played at the UWI-JFF Horace Burrell Centre of Excellence.

Gregory Bryce