Mount Pleasant reach first national final
Trivante Stewart’s spectacular brace helped Mount Pleasant to a 3-1 victory over Arnett Gardens in their Jamaica Premier League (JPL) second-leg semi-final at Sabina Park yesterday.The result handed the St Ann-based team a 5-3 aggregate win over the two legs and their first ever spot in a national final.
Stewart struck in the 33rd and 40th minutes as Mount Pleasant came from a goal down to lead 2-1 at halftime. A Deandre Cunningham strike in the 15th minute had given Arnett Gardens a 1-0 lead. Shandee James sealed the win with an 86th minute goal to send the Mount Pleasant supporters into a frenzy.
“I feel good putting Mount Pleasant in the final for the first time because I want the people of St Ann to be happy. I just want them to come out for the final and give us the crowd support we need,” Stewart said afterwards.
The striker also overtook Cavalier’s Collin Anderson as the league’s leading scorer by one, with 18 goals now to his tally.
“I have been putting in the work in training because my team needs me. With my A game, it’s impossible to stop me. I work hard for that (leading scorer), and I owe it to my community, friends, and family,” said Stewart.
Whitmore was also full of praise for his big striker.
“Trivante is doing what he knows best. He has been working hard, his attitude is good, so it’s no surprise to me,” he said.
He was also very happy to lead Mount Pleasant to their first final.
“We set out months ago to be in the final on the 11th. The guys showed a lot of character. We went down 1-0, but we showed character to get back in the game and went on to win it,” he added.
Arnett’s coach, Paul ‘Tegat’ Davis, said they didn’t play Stewart as planned and made life difficult for themselves
“We practised double marking (on Stewart) because he is strong. We didn’t too well with him tonight and he scored two goals,” Davis said.
“We made it tough. We did not do the things we were supposed to do. We didn’t move fast. We didn’t close the midfield down a lot and gave them too much space,” he added.
After a lively start, Arnett Gardens jumped into the lead when Cunningham fired home from an angle after a great build-up in the 15th minute.
However, Stewart levelled the scores in the 31st when he got in the 18-yard box and beat the goalkeeper with a well-placed effort.
The big striker then put his team ahead with a superb strike five minutes from halftime.
Devonte Campbell had a great chance to put Mount Pleasant further ahead, but he put his effort over from 12 yards.
Shandee James sealed the win with another fine goal from just inside the box four minutes from full time.