Ryon Jones, Staff Reporter
Oberlin High's quest to advance beyond the first round of the senior urban area schoolboy football competition for the first time in their history got off on a losing note, as they were beaten 3-1 by three-time champions Charlie Smith in their opening Group D Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA)/LIME Manning Cup match yesterday, at Anthony Spaulding Sports Complex.
The Jerome Waite-coached Charlie Smith got their goals by way of Lemmar Stewart (10th), Kimani Arbourne (75th) and Patrick Sales (81st). Oberlin had brought the game to 1-1 in the 58th minute courtesy of Sanjay Shannon.
Charlie Smith are early leaders of the group on goal difference, as they are tied on three points with Vauxhall, which defeated Donald Quarrie 2-0. Defending Manning Cup champions, St George's College, and Camperdown, are tied in third on a point each following their opening day 2-2 stalemate, while Oberlin are pointless.
"Our first objective is to try and get out of this round," Oberlin's coach, Lloyd Walker, said. "The next match against Georges, I should have four guys who are starters; they should be registered by then and we should be able to compete."
Persistent afternoon showers did not lend itself to the most attractive game, but the weather was not to be blamed for the concession of the opening goal by Oberlin. Their keeper, Keno Pinnock, stood rooted to the ground as Stewart's 25-yard free-kick flew into the net.
Oberlin pulled level against the run of play 13 minutes into the second half when Charlie Smith failed to clear their lines, allowing Shannon to bundle over the line, much to his and his teammates' unbridled delight.
Sales would, however, restore Charlie Smith's lead with the best goal of the game when he executed a textbook header to convert from a right-sided cross delivered by Orlando Richie.
Pinnock, who had redeemed himself to be Oberlin's best player, was left exposed by his defence in the 80th minute, resulting in him fouling Sales in the area. Sales picked himself up to dispatch the resulting penalty to the right of the diving Pinnock.
"It is young team; they are on a two-year or three-year programme, so it was a good experience for them today," said Waite.
St Catherine 1 Denham Town 2KTHS 0 Wolmer's 6Papine 1 Clan Carthy 0
Donald Quarrie 0 Vauxhall 2Charlie Smith 3 Oberlin 1
Spanish Town 3 Penwood 0
KC vs Eltham (No referee showed up)