Warren hits hat-trick for ruthless PHC
PHC Zebras 7 Somerset Eagles 1
Marco Warren scored a hat-trick to lead PHC Zebras to a 7-1 win over Somerset Eagles at PHC Stadium on Sunday.
PHC scored three goals in the first half and then added four more in the second period. Marcus Iris-Simmons scored the lone goal for the visiting side with his goal briefly drawing Eagles level.
The start of the game was initially delayed as Eagles’ goalkeeper Lorenzo Lambert arrived late. With the visiting side having no other goalkeeper in their team, referee Anthony Francis held up the game until Lambert arrived.
Once the game did start, it quickly burst into life with both the Eagles and the Zebras carving out goalscoring opportunities within the first two minutes.
After that initial flurry, the game settled down as both teams tried to set the tempo and take control of the middle of the park. PHC then had a few quick chances in succession. Na’eem Griffith, the PHC defender, attempted an acrobatic scissor kick after the ball fell to him from a quick free kick.
Eagles, however, did not heed the warning and PHC made their next chance count. In the 21st minute, Cecoy Robinson, the PHC captain, whipped in a corner from the right that was missed by the goalkeeper Lambert allowing Darren Usher, the PHC full back, to break the deadlock and put the home side in front.
PHC had taken a deserved lead but a minute later they were rocked by an equaliser from the Eagles. The Zebras were robbed of possession in midfield and the ball was fed through to Marcus Iris-Simmons, who raced down the right flank and then angled in a shot past Shaquille Trott, the PHC goalkeeper.
Suddenly, the Eagles were level, with Iris-Simmons’s goal seemingly coming out of nowhere and leaving the PHC players and fans briefly bewildered.
However, PHC, the defending league champions, quickly regained their composure. In the 25th minute, they almost scored a second goal but Jenico Sealey placed his shot wide after following up on a rebound from a Tre Ming shot.
Six minutes later, they would find a second goal. The Zebras were awarded another corner which fell to Ming, who improvised and sent the ball back across goal where Warren was waiting and pounced, directing his glancing header into the back of the net. The Zebras had re-established their lead.
Then, two minutes they would extend it and Ming was once again involved. Goalkeeper Lambert failed to collect a cross-cum-shot, and Ming was on hand to head home from two yards out. Just before half-time, Griffith blasted over from the edge of the box, as PHC took a 3-1 lead into the break.
The second half began with almost as much excitement as the first half had. Just minutes into the half, PHC’s Sealey fired over from close range and then the Eagles’ Tahj Wade lifted a smart free kick, just inches over the bar.
Had Wade converted his free kick, it could have possibly brought Eagles back into the match. Instead, they fell further behind, when Warren scored again. Robinson found Warren with time and space on the edge of the box and Warren turned and unleashed a rasping shot that left Lambert with no chance.
Warren was not done yet, though. In the 64th minute, he got his hat-trick. A long ball was played over the top, which Warren raced onto and then delicately chipped into the net to bring up his treble.
With a 5-1 lead, PHC then made two quick substitutions. One of those substitutes, Kushae Hypolite scored just moments after coming onto the pitch.
Robinson did some great work down the flank that took the entire backline of the Eagles out of the game and then he unselfishly squared the ball to Hypolite to stab home and give his side their sixth goal. Another PHC substitute, Bruce DeGrilla, then missed a good chance to make it 7-1.
However, PHC would soon get the seventh goal that they craved. After a good passage of play between PHC’s forwards in the Eagles’ final third, Warren was pushed to the ground by an Eagles’ defender. Without hesitation, referee Francis pointed to the penalty spot. Robinson stepped up and coolly converted his penalty to put the defending league champions into seventh heaven.
PHC Zebras: Usher 20, Warren 30, 65, 69, Ming 33, Hypolite 79, Robinson 85 pen
Somerset Eagles: Iris, Simmons 21
PHC Zebras (4-3-3): Shaquille Trott — (sub: C Fubler) — D Usher, D Dowling, M Lambe, D Smith-Lightbourne — D Lodge, T Ming, N Griffith (B Degrilla) — J Sealey (sub: K Hypolite), M Warren, C Robinson. Substitutes not used: Z Lee, Shakhai Trott, Z Weller, M Wilson.
Somerset Eagles (4-3-3): L Lambert — A Morrissey, S Lambert, G Smith, Antrell Butterfield — T Eve, A Telford, D Simmons (sub: C Medeiros) — M Iris-Simmons (sub: E Fubler), T Wade, N Rego. Substitutes not used: Antinori Butterfield, R Ford II, C Smith, R Woodley-Smith.
Referee: Anthony Francis.
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