Wolmer’s, Vauxhall through with draw
Vauxhall High secured their place in the second round of the ISSA/Digicel Manning Cup after battling to a 2-2 draw with Wolmer’s in the final Group E game at Windward Road yesterday.
Wolmer’s, who were already assured their passage to the last 16, still had a slim chance of winning the group with a win and Jamaica College dropping points at José Marti. But the Alex Thomas-coached team found Vauxhall stubborn and resilient.
Vauxhall head coach Keon Broderick praised the effort of his team for how they performed against tough opposition to advance to the second round for the third time in five years.
“Coming up against a Wolmer’s team with so much talent, we knew it would be difficult,” he said. “I asked the boys to concentrate for 90 minutes, and they did that. We scored two goals, but [though] we gave up two soft goals, we did what we needed to do and got the point we deserved.”
Wolmer’s captain Shamar McLean is focused on his team’s preparations for the second round. “It was a tough game against Vauxhall,” he said. “We came here with [the mindset] to get three points, but leaving with one is okay. Going forward, we [have to] just prepare, make sure we win the first leg (of the second round), and go from there.”
The result meant that Wolmer’s finished on 28 points behind Jamaica College. Vauxhall, who finished on 23 points in third place, qualify as one of the two best third-place teams with Mona High from Group D. Mona finished with 24 points.
Wolmer’s started the game brightly and had a chance to take an early lead in the eighth minute when they were awarded a penalty for handball, but Ronaldo Webster’s shot was saved by goalkeeper Stephen Brightly, who foiled the rebound when it fell to Webster.
Vauxhall took the lead in the 24th minute when a good pass unlocked Chad André Jenkins, who fired low into the net past Deshawn Bernard. Webster redeemed himself in the 35th minute when his header from a Revaldo Mitchell cross levelled the match at one.
Vauxhall forward Troy Nosworthy was the main threat for the home side and had a shot saved by Bernard. But four minutes from the end of the first half, Nosworthy fired Vauxhall back into the lead with a great one-time finish in the penalty area.
The second half saw the visitors push for the equaliser, with Vauxhall trying to protect their lead. A free kick in the 60th minute presented Wolmer’s with a golden opportunity to restore parity, which they took when McLean caught Brightly off his line and his delivery sailed into the back of the net.