By Franklin Wilson
Guyana’s ‘Lady Jags’ turned in another encouraging performance which was enough to blank Antigua and Barbuda by a similar score line as their first win against Bermuda when the second day of action in the Concacaf Women’s U-20 Championship was contested last evening at the Leonora Track and Field Facility, Leonora, West Coast Demerara.
Witnessed by Director of Sport Christopher Jones among other dignitaries, the ‘Lady Jags’ again won by a 2-0 margin with goals either side of play yet again in a dominating display, the margin of victory could have easily been wider were it not for numerous missed chances.
‘The Benna Girls’ were cornered early by the hungry ‘Lady Jags’ who controlled play and were aggressive from early on. Tiandi Smith, playing at the top, created lots of challenges for the Antigua backline.
The lanky player was brought down just outside the box in the 22nd minute and the resulting free kick was directed over the crossbar; but it was not the end of Smith’s presence in the Benna Girls defensive third.
One minute later, Smith was at it again as she took the attack to the Antiguans once again, this time she entered the box and was brought down by the goalkeeper in the process, the Referee had not hesitation in blowing for the infringement and pointing to the spot.
Captain for the match, Brianne Desa stepped up to take the kick and clinically put the ball past the substitute goalkeeper in the 24th minute. The starting goalie was substituted after she brought down Smith as she picked up an injury and had to be stretchered off.
In added on time, Aubrey Narine had a chance to double the lead but her shot was brought under control by the goalkeeper. The ‘Lady Jags’ controlled and had more possession of the ball in the second half and did not let up on their offensive pursuits.
Numerous corners were won and chances came by but the awareness in the final third was not as clinical as it could have been but it was just the team’s second match together and it was a huge improvement from their first against Bermuda on Saturday evening last.
It was from one of the many corners created that the second goal came. On a quick play, Liana Khedoo was perfectly placed on the first post and on receiving the ball touched it past the goalkeeper in the 60th minute, doubling the advantage in the process and putting the game well out of reach of the visiting ‘Benna Girls’.
Guyana introduced three players in the second half to maintain their advantage; Tori De Nobrage came in for Jeana Knight, scorer of both Guyana goals against Bermuda. Jessica Myers was replaced by Hailey David, while Khedoo made way for Jaida Brooks.
The final whistle was sounded to loud applause by the fans on hand as they cheered on their ‘Lady Jags’ for another fine performance. Guyana’s next match will be on Friday night at the same venue from 20:30hrs when they take on St. Lucia, also undefeated and on six points but Guyana leads with a better goal difference.
The St. Lucians notched their second win, downing Bermuda 2-1 on account of a double from their Captain, Krysan St. Louis in the 10th and 13th minutes. Bermuda pulled one back late in the piece, Ryley Simmons scoring in the 87th but it was all too late.
Tomorrow, Antigua will battle St. Lucia from 18:00hrs with the main match between Bermuda and Suriname from 20:30hrs.
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