Stovell double starts Paget party
Paget Lions 4 Ireland Rangers 0
Dion Stovell scored twice at Southampton Oval yesterday to secure Paget Lions’ return to the Premier Division after a twelve-year hiatus.
Although having nothing to play for, Ireland Rangers refused to go down without a fight and took the game to Paget from the starting whistle. They should have opened the scoring in the ninth minute when Daunte Woods was one on one with Paget goalkeeper Jason Smith, but hit his shot wide. Then Keija Simmons miskicked from a corner when well placed.
These misses served as a wake-up call to Paget, who settled down and started to play a passing game.
Stovell started the ball rolling with a brilliant individual effort when he beat two defenders to get into the box before being tripped leaving referee Lloyd Christopher no hesitation but to award a penalty. Stovell dusted himself off and stepped up to take the penalty only to hit it straight down the middle at Ireland goalkeeper Tjay Brangman, who did well to block the shot and jump on the rebound before Stovell could get to it.
Stovell would redeem himself a minute later with another brilliant effort when he flicked the ball over Regeno Gomes before running around him and hitting a thunderous shot past Brangman from three yards out.
Paget scored their second immediately after the break when Robert Richardson was involved in a give-and-go with Travis Wilkinson before sending in a low cross, which Stovell ran on to and slammed home from close range.
Paget would make it 3-0 when Tahj Wade’s back post corner was headed back into the centre by McQuinn Burch, leaving captain Jensen Rogers the task of toe poking the ball home.
Ireland Rangers were denied a consolation goal when Johnny Bean latched onto a free kick but his firm shot smashed against the crossbar and was cleared to safety.
Substitute Nelson Carpenter closed out the scoring in the 88th minute when he teamed with youngster, Diaje Hart to blast home from close range. Shortly after, the final whistle sounded sending the Paget fans into wild and champagne popping celebrations.
An ecstatic Paget coach, Robert Lee, had high praise for his team and community.
“I wish to thank the Paget community for their support,” Lee said. “It has been a total team effort all season. We had the goal of getting promoted in mind at the beginning of the season and we accomplished it. It’s been a long time and we are finally there.”
Stovell 32, 47, Rogers 68, N Carpenter 88
Paget (4-4-2): J Smith, J Rogers, M Burch, R Richardson, J Carpenter, D Dill (sub: N Carpenter, 46min), T Wilkinson, D Hart, T Wade, D Curtis (sub: T Welch, 72), D Stovell. Substitutes not used: K Tucker, K Butterfield. Booked: Wade.
Ireland Rangers (4-5-1): T Brangman, M Simmons, K Simmons, C Jones, R Gomes, J Powell (sub: J Hayward, 60), J Ratteray, S Proctor, J Parris (sub: J Bean, 46), D Woods, R Seaman. Booked: Gomes, Hayward.
Referee: L Christopher
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