Team suffers in 2-0 loss against Sporting Central
Richard Bryan, Gleaner Writer
Sporting Central Academy shrugged off a lame first-half display to take advantage of a casualty-ridden Highgate to win 2-0 in their Red Stripe Premier League encounter at Brancourt yesterday.
It was Sporting's second straight win, but one in which they mainly owe their two second-half goals by Levaughn Williams and Francois Swaby to an unfortunate red card to the visitors' goalkeeper, Maurice Evans. The Clarendon team now has six points
The game was uneventful until the closing minutes of the first half when Evans decided to respond erratically in kind to a bottle thrown at him. Rather than calling for the referee's attention, he fetched the bottle from the ground, before taking aim and hurling it at the crowd behind him.
Fortunately, no spectator seemed to have been hurt, but his action overshadowed the provocation he had been receiving from early in the game.
Punished for violent display
The game came to a halt, but Evans was punished by referee Cardella Samuels for violent display. André Thomas was sacrificed to let in another goalkeeper Dane Henry.
The one-man disadvantage was to take its toll in the second half as coach Calvin Lewis was forced into making an early substitution for the injured Carlos Barrett.
Lewis, in his post-match interview, did not hesitate to point out where his team lost the game.
"Spectators need to control their behaviour," he said.
"Our plan was to contain them in the first half and make a run at them in the second. I think we were doing that well, but when you get a red card at half-time, it's going to affect the team and it affected us."
Williams, who had scored in Sporting's 2-1 away win against parishioners Humble Lion the previous week, began their second-half surge by hitting powerfully into the side netting. However, he made no mistake in the 60th minute when Dale Watson's pass found him on the edge of the six-yard area. He showed a lot of skill to dismiss Highgate's captain Anthowe Dawkins before toe-punching into the far corner for a 1-0 lead.
To their credit, Highgate resisted for long periods and even came close to equalising when Severo Murphy hit a grounder from six yards just inches from the left upright.
But the St Mary team's resistance was broken by the pace of Sporting's late attacking substitute, Dwight Dunk. Holes cropped up everywhere and Sporting could easily have scored three late goals. Williams again hit the side netting and was also denied at close range by Henry. However, Swaby later found it easy to move the ball around three players before slotting into an empty net for his and Sporting's second goal.
Sporting Central Academy 2
Levaughn Williams 60th
Francois Swaby 90th