North Village ram home numerical advantage
Devonshire Cougars 0 North Village Rams 4
Cougars’ captain Zeko White’s second-half dismissal proved pivotal as North Village capitalised on their numerical advantage to run out comfortable 4-0 winners on Saturday.
With North Village leading 1-0, White’s sending off 10 minutes into the second-half proved a key turning point as the visitors seized the initiative, with two goals apiece from Justin Bell and Keishen Bean clinching a first win of the new Premier Division campaign.
The game started in sunny but windy conditions as Village keeper Tahj Bell did well to follow Lamont Brangman’s wind-aided cross which drifted to the back post as early as the fourth minute.
Cougars continued to have the early pressure as striker Elisha Darrell turned his center-half Devrae Tankard to bring off a finger-tip save by Bell closely followed by a give and go between Zari Simmons and Jahzardae Samuels with the latter’s goalbound shot blocked by Quintonio Lema just inside the box.
Midway through the half, Village’s Jaizel Smith-DeShields picked out the overlapping left wing back Zanike Hendrickson with a measured cross which he struck firmly forcing keeper Ajai Daniels to palm away with a one-handed save before being cleared to safety.
The same two players combined again with Hendrickson hitting a low drive causing Daniels to dive to his left to pull in from an advancing Bean. Just before the half, Smith-DeShields had the opportunity to score but took too long to shoot and was robbed of the ball just inside the box.
Cougars should have scored in the first minute of the second half when Darrell fed Erin Butterfield-Tankard only to have keeper Bell smother the ball at his feet.
Good dribbling skills and refereeing led to the opening goal in the 53rd minute. Village’s Demitri Daniels won possession of the ball in the middle of the park but was being held by Zari Simmons only for referee Anthony Francis to allow the advantage. Daniels played half-time substitute, Bell through who gave a quick give and go with Rayquan Rochester before beating Daniels with a hard and low shot from an angle.
Two minutes later, things got worst for Cougars when skipper Zeko White needlessly followed through with his whole body on a tackle with Bell as the ball was going out on the side line and received a straight red card dismissal for violent conduct.
His brother Zekiro White moved to center-half but this left gapping holes in the midfield which Village exploited with every attack.
Bean opened his account after being put through. Keeper Daniels decided to stay on his line and made it easy for Bean to slot the ball to his left.
Cougars had the chance to pull one back when Darrell received possession and struck a curling shot which brought off a spectacular one-handed save from the diving Bell. This was the last threat by the Cougars before Village had their way.
Bell scored his second and the team’s third with a solo effort down the left flank and firing in at the near post. The fourth and Bean’s second came from a good build up in the midfield involving Bean, Rochester and Lema before Bean positioned himself well to place a powerful header past the stranded keeper.
Cougars should have had a consolation goal when substitute Drewonde Bascome pulled off a smart save from Bell on the angle but Calin Maybury slammed the rebound over the top with the goal at his mercy.
“I am happy with the result,” said the delighted Village Head Coach, Kenny Thompson. “I am very pleased to score four goals and keep a shut-out.
“This is good for our goal average and also our first win of the season. It feels good.”
North Village Rams
Justin Bell 53, 78
Keishen Bean 59, 82
Devonshire Cougars (4-4-2)
A Daniels – Zekiro White, C Maybury, Zeko White, L Brangman – J Samuels (sub: C Caisey 58), Z Simmons, J Wade (sub: D Bascome 65), E Butterfield-Tankard (sub: N Carmichael 65) – S Pearman, E Darrell. Substitutions not used: J Seymour, L Tota, J Fox. Bookings: C Maybury, J Samuels, Zeiko White (Red), Z Simmons.
North Village (4-1-4-1)
Tahj Bell – Q Lema, Z Robinson, D Tankard, A Darrell – T Tucker – C Caisey (sub: Justin Bell 46), D Daniels, J Smith-DeShields, Z Hendrickson (R Robinson 46) – K Bean. Substitutions not used: W Shakir, R Murphy, P Smith, D Dillas. Bookings: C Caisey, D Tankard.
Referee: A Francis
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