STATHS remains perfect in Group D after 4-1 win over XLCR, as Tivoli put seven past Cumberland in Group B

By Sports Desk September 30, 2023

Despite conceding for the first time this season, last year's beaten finalist St Andrew Technical High School (STATHS) extended their unbeaten run in the ISSA/Digicel Manning Cup with a 4-1 beating of Excelsior High in a Group D top-of-the-table clash at Anthony Spaulding Sports Complex on Saturday.

A brace from Leon Brown (2nd, 68th) and one each from Kalonji Watson (47th) and Andre Salmon (70th), made the points safe for the Bumper Hall-based team. Jkivann Salmon (75th) got Excelsior's consolation. 

With the win, STATHS are now sole leaders of the group on 15 points, three ahead of Excelsior, who were suffering their first defeat of the season.

Winning coach Phillip Williams expressed pleasure with his team's progress so far.

 "I am very happy today was a good test for my team, I think the Excelsior team is a good team and we embrace these types of games, and the boys showed their quality today. This is a more mature team, so we keep doing what we have been doing and it's paying off. We have another shot to win the title this year and we will give it our best try," he said in a post-match interview. 

It was a frantic start by STATHS, as Brown picked up a loose ball and worked his way around two defenders before unleashing a stinging left-footer from the top of the 18-yard box that gave Jadavin Waul, in goal for Excelsior, no chance at a save.

Though STATHS bossed possession from there and had a few chances from which they could have converted, Excelsior were not without hope and did play their game but found the Bumper Hall team's defence in defiant mode.

As the score went unchanged at the break, STATHS, like they did at the start, came out spiritedly on the resumption and doubled the lead two minutes in when Watson fired home from the top of the 18-yard box, beating Waul all ends up.

They continued to apply consistent pressure and pushed even further ahead courtesy of Brown, who applied an easy finish from close range to a Dwayne Atkinson pass, moving his tally to 10 goals this season.

And before Excelsior could catch their breaths Salmon delivered another punch when he fired home while under pressure from two defenders.

However, the Mountain View Avenue-based team gave their fans something to celebrate, as Jkivann Salmon finished off a well-worked build up with a sweet right-footed strike from deep inside the 18-yard box, beating STATHS's custodian Jaheem Williams, at his near post.

Excelsior's Head coach Keon Broderick took heart from his team's performance to an extent. 

"The goal we scored is evident that we have quality in the team. But credit must be given to STATHS the way they transitioned and came at us really quickly. I also thought we could have done much better defensively, but as we move on into the latter stages I think we will be much better," Broderick said.

Meanwhile, defending Walker Cup champions Tivoli High were among other winners on the day, as they moved to the top of group B thanks to a dominant 7-0 win over Cumberland. The win saw Tivoli up to 10 points from four games, one point more than defending champions Jamaica College.

 
Saturday's results
St Catherine 6, Holy Trinity 0
STATHS 4, Excelsior 1
Cumberland 0, Tivoli 7
Haile Selassie 5, Greater Portmore 0
Jamaica College vs Meadowbrook (rained out)
Eltham 4, Denham Town 1
Jonathan Grant 2, Dunoon 1
Wolmer's Boys 4, Donald Quarrie 0
Papine 4, St Jago 3
Vauxhall 1, Ascot 1
Ardenne 2, Jose Marti 3
Pembroke Hall 0, St George’s College 4
Kingston Technical 3, Spanish Town 1
Norman Manley 7, Edith Dalton 0

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