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Joseph brace trims W Connection lead
Marcus Joseph scored a goal on either side of the half as a resurgent Pt Fortin Civic Centre blanked visiting San Juan Jabloteh 2-0 at the Mahaica Oval, Pt Fortin, yesterday to trim DirecTV W Connection’s lead at the top of the Digicel T&T Pro League table to nine points. Joseph, who netted back-to-back hat-trick in wins over Police (5-0) and St Ann’s Rangers (3-0) last month opened the scoring in the 41st minute and then added an insurance item in the 74th for Pt Fortin to extend its unbeaten run to six matches since the funeral service for former club member and T&T international Akeem Adams at the same venue earlier last month. With the win, Pt Fortin regained second on the nine-team table with 23 points from 14 matches, nine behind four-time champions W Connection which has a match in hand while Caledonia AIA is third with 20 points, two ahead of North East Stars and Police after its 3-0 shut-out of St Ann’s Rangers at the Hasely Crawford Stadium, Mucurapo.
For Caledonia, recent signing, American Ralph Lundy III scored twice and set up another—all in the first half—as Caledonia AIA comfortably defeated ’s Rangers 3-0 oto briefly jump to second.
The 23-year-old Lundy opened his account in the ninth minute when he picked up a poor clearance by Rangers goalkeeper Akel Clarke, had a stare, then spanked a low left footed strike into the back of the net from 24-yards-out. Eight minutes later Lundy had a another attempt on target, but this time Clarke did enough to tame the low effort before gathering it at the goal-line. However in the 20th minute, Lundy, turned provider when he looped a pass into the area for St Vincent and the Grenadines’ striker Denron Frederick, who shrugged off his marker and fired past Clarke for a 2-0 Caledonia cushion. Lundy then sealed the win for Caledonia in the 34th minute, tapping in from close range after Fredrick failed to beat Clarke with his attempt off a cross by Nathan Lewis.
In Friday’s other match, referee Neil Brizan stole the spotlight despite Marvin Oliver earning Central FC a last gasp 1-1 draw with North East Stars. Stars went into the break 1-0 ahead thanks to a 44th item from Jamaican midfielder Keithy Simpson, however in in the first of four stoppage-time minutes, a questionable foul went Central’s way at the sound of Brizan’s whistle after substitute Rundell Winchester and Stars’ defender Aquil Selby collided inside the area. And from the result set-play Oliver then struck a right-footed free-kick into the right corner past Stars’ second choice custodian Stephan Barkeley to earn his team a share of the points. There was still time on the clock for Brizan to have another say in the match as Stars’ coach Angus Eve was then given his marching orders from the technical area, along with his team’s equipment manager Selwyn Gabriel. At the final whistle, Brizan was still at the centre of things as he was accosted by players, staff and even Stars’ owner Darryl Mahabir at the centre of the pitch, which resulted in goal-scorer Simpson getting a direct red card.
Digicel T&T Pro League
Pt Fortin Civic 2 (Marcus Joseph 41st, 74th) vs San Juan Jabloteh 0
Caledonia AIA 3 (Ralph Lundy 9th, 33rd, Denron Fredrick 19th) vs St Ann's Rangers 0
Central FC 1 (Marvin Oliver 92nd) vs North East Stars 1 (Keithy Simpson 44th)
Teams P W D L F A Pts
W Connection 13 10 2 1 28 7 32
Pt Fortin 14 7 2 5 21 15 23
Caledonia 13 5 5 3 21 14 20
N/East Stars 12 5 3 4 12 9 18
Police 13 5 3 5 18 20 18
Central FC 12 3 7 2 14 12 16
Defence Force 8 4 1 3 15 14 13
Jabloteh 13 3 1 9 18 30 10
Rangers 12 1 0 11 11 37 3
Tuesday, February 11
Venue: Ato Boldon Stadium, Couva:
•Police vs St Ann’s Rangers, 6 pm
•Central FC vs W Connection, 8 pm
•North East Stars vs San Juan Jabloteh,
Marvin Lee Stadium, Macoya, 6 pm