Marc Stamp, Gleaner Writer
Jamaica sealed their spot in the semi-finals of the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) Women's Under-20 Finals when they whipped Suriname 5-0 at the Anthony Spaulding Sports Complex in Trench Town, St Andrew, yesterday.
The Jamaicans joined Cuba, the Dominican Republic and Trinidad and Tobago (T&T) in the last four that will battle for the two available qualifying spots to the CONCACAF stage in the Cayman Islands next year.
In the opening game of the double-header, Dominican Republic cemented their spot with a 5-1 win over St Kitts-Nevis. Yaqueisi Soriano netted a brace, while Gabreila Romero, Anajaiira Burgos and Winibian Perez also scored for Dominican Republic. Leranja Williamson scored the lone goal for St Kitts-Nevis.
Jamaica were frustrated in the early part of the match by Suriname and opened the scoresheet when Kayla Gray shot past goalkeeper Caneisha Barrow in the 32nd minute. Then three minutes later, Oshay Lawes made it 2-0.
Gray completed her hat-trick with goals in the 47th and 86 minutes. Keona Simmonds also scored in the 72nd minute in an easy win for Jamaica.
In Group A of the preliminary stage, Cuba and T&T moved to six points from two games each. Anguilla and Grenada are winless and cannot surpass the joint leaders, with one set of games remaining.
Cuba, who beat Anguilla 6-0 on Sunday at Waterhouse Stadium, have scored 13 times and conceded two for a +11 goal difference, while T&T, with 12 goals for and one against, also have a +11 goal difference. However, the Cubans have a slight advantage by scoring more goals.
Both teams will meet today to decide the group winner, at the Waterhouse Stadium, starting at 6 p.m. In the first game, Anguilla face Grenada in a game of academic interest only.
Like the scenario in Group A, Jamaica and Dominican Republic qualified with six points each from two games in Group B. Jamaica lead the group on a superior goal difference. Suriname and St Kitts-Nevis are both out of contention without a point.
That group will conclude tomorrow with a double-header at Anthony Spaulding Complex.
The semi-finals are scheduled for Friday at the Trench Town venue, which is home to Arnett Gardens FC. The final will be played two days later at the same venue.
The two finalists will qualify for the CONCACAF Championships and join hosts Cayman Islands as Caribbean representatives.