Somerset spot on to advance to final
Somerset Trojans 1 PHC Zebras 1
Trojans won 5-4 on penalties
A new Dudley Eve Trophy champion will be crowned this season after Somerset Trojans beat holders PHC Zebras 5-4 in a sudden-death penalty shoot-out at Goose Gosling Field last night.
Jaden Ratteray-Smith scored the winning penalty to decide this tight semi-final that dragged on past midnight to book Somerset’s place in the November 11 final against Robin Hood and hand PHC their first loss of the season.
The West Enders appeared to be home and dry after defender Trevin Ming put them out front with a powerful header from a set piece.
However, Marquel Waldron came off the bench and curled in a 40-yard free kick to send the match to extra time and ultimately penalties, where Trojans would not be denied a second time.
“It feels good to win and tonight was a very big step in a good direction for us,” Coolidge Durham, the Somerset captain, said.
“We were complacent and a tad bit in uncharted territory for us in terms of managing the game late like that.
“But my team-mates, the staff and fans stuck behind us and in the end we came out with the victory.
“We have to learn as a young team and these are growing pains we have to deal with and there are also different phases and stages we have to go through to become better footballers.
“But it’s a good victory and we just have to keep this same intensity and energy moving forward.”
After a goalless first half, Somerset took the lead against the run of play.
Somerset won a corner which right back Jadan Rattarey-Smith crossed into the area where defender Ming rose above the PHC defence and headed past goalkeeper Shaquille Trott in the 50th minute.
Zebras made a tactical change, bringing on experienced pair Waldron and Marco Warren to try and get a foothold in the match, the latter flicking the ball just over during an attack down the right.
Somerset missed a glaring opportunity at the other end to kill the game off when midfielder Damon Swan dragged wide from close range.
PHC pressed with the clock winding down and after being thwarted on several occasions by Shaquille Bean, the Somerset goalkeeper, making his first appearance after serving a four-game Bermuda Football Association suspension, finally broke through with virtually the last kick before the final whistle.
PHC won a free kick inside Somerset terrain that Waldron drifted inside the far post to send the game to extra time.
Somerset had the ball in the back of the net in extra time, however, Jaz Ratteray-Smith’s tap in at the back post from substitute Khyree Hollis’s cross was waved off by the linesman’s flag and the game would drag onto penalties where PHC ultimately faltered.
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