Marc Stamp, Gleaner Writer
Harbour View Football Club ended the Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) second round on a high following a hard-fought 1-0 win over Arnett Gardens FC at Harbour View Mini-Stadium on Sunday night.
Ranique Muir, who celebrated his birthday yesterday, scored the all-important goal at the 54th minute for the 'Stars of the East' as they pushed to 45 points atop the 12-team standings after 22 games in the nation's top flight.
Harbour View's head coach, Vin Blaine, told The Gleaner he was satisfied with his team's performance in a close encounter.
"Well, it was a tough game, as you saw. I think we came out in the second half a bit more purposeful," Blaine said.
"We were having some problems in midfield, so at half-time we made some adjustments and were able to shut down Arnett's free-flowing game in midfield," Blaine explained. "We got a good goal from Ranique Muir, and we won."
Harbour View and Arnett treated the fair-size crowd to a good display of attacking and defensive football. The winners' goal came from a costly error by Arnett's lanky central midfielder, Rohan Reid, who carelessly lost the ball that fell kindly to Muir, who rocketed a shot past goalkeeper Damion Hyatt.
Reid, a national player, had a poor game, as he turned over the ball a lot in his key position.
In the early part of the game, national midfielder Jermaine Hue, who returned to the Harbour View line-up after an injury, peppered a shot on goal that was brilliantly parried over the crossbar by Hyatt.
Arnett's coach, Calvin Lewis, believed that his team was unforunate.
"I think we lost a tough one. We should both have left here with something. But credit to Harbour View, as they got one chance and put it away," he said.
"It shows that if we continue to make the same mistake week in, week out, we are going to concede goals. But overall, I must commend my team for the effort they showed, they really fought their hearts out."
With regards to changes, especially in Arnett's defensive system, Lewis said: "The back line has been great, they have been fantastic. We made some changes during the transfer window and this is the first goal that we have conceded in three games since the start of the year."
Despite missing out on the end-of-round all-incentive final, Lewis said his team will continue to push hard.
"We will continue to play hard, as we have 16 games to go, so we will always be putting our best out there as we continue to challenge for the title."