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Cougars claim Triple Crown

Somerset Trojans 0

Devonshire Cougars 3

League and Friendship Trophy champions Devonshire Cougars added the FA Cup to their collection with a comfortable victory at the National Sports Centre to become the fifth team to win the coveted Triple Crown.

Midfielder Moses Steede netted twice and Domico Coddington the other as Somerset Trojans missed a late second half penalty that would have tied the match up. Cougars made them pay with two late goals to seal victory and complete their most successful season in the Digicel Premier Division.

It was a bitter sweet occasion for Cougars coach Dennis Brown whose first Triple Crown success was achieved against the Trojans, a team he captained and coached.

“It’s total elation, this goes back to pre-season when our focus was to work hard and get the trophies that Dandy Town got, that’s what we actually said,” said Brown as Cougars players and supporters celebrated their outstanding achievement, leaving no question as to who are the best team for the 2012-13 season.

Only Trojans, PHC, North Village and Vasco have won all three trophies in the same season before and this FA Cup triumph was Cougars’ third in four seasons. Dandy Town won three trophies last season, too, the league, FA and Dudley Eve but the latter is not part of the traditional Triple Crown.

“We sacrificed all year, Christmas, Boxing Day, Good Friday, we put the work in and trained four or five times a week at times and this is the reward that we get and I feel very good for the players,” said Brown who had mixed emotions at the end.

“I’m a little emotional and a little sorry for them (Somerset) but at the end of the day I’m a Cougar and happy for Devonshire Rec.,” said Brown.

“I thought it was a fitting result, we had chances to put away early and didn’t and kept them in the game. I thought ‘Monk’ (goalkeeper Kioshi Trott) made a crucial penalty save and we just went from strength to strength after that.”

It was from the penalty spot that Cougars finally broke the deadlock in the 21st minute when Trojans goalkeeper Shaquille Bean was blown down for a clear shove in the back of Domico Coddington as he went for a high ball inside the penalty area. Steede sent Bean the wrong way from the spot as he tucked his effort into the bottom corner to the keeper’s left.

Cougars were playing with more purpose and had the best chances in the first half, including an effort four minutes later from Jesse Seymour who stabbed his effort wide of the far post after the ball broke to him on the left side of the six-yard box. In the 28th minute Cougars went close again when Coddington cut in from the right and tried his luck with a left-footed shot from 20 yards that was just inches too high.

Somerset, with the wind in their faces, were struggling to get into any rhythm as Cougars enjoyed the better of the first half possession.

The Trojans, who were winning trophies with ease in the 70s and 80s when Cougars were still trying to establish themselves as a force in the top-flight, immediately began to offer something more after the restart when Johnny Bean drove a low shot across goal and past the far post. Then a long kick downfield by keeper Bean saw the ball bounce off the head of Cougars defender Darius Cox and just past the post for a corner.

At the other end Coddington had an effort blocked inside the box before captain Chris Caisey kept on the pressure for Cougars with a chipped effort that went just over the bar with the keeper off his line. Recent Stroke trialist Chae Brangman, who had just come on as a sub, created the opening with a strong run down the right. Brangman was posing problems with his pace and strength as he raced into the box before his effort was blocked by the keeper.

Somerset had the chance to erase the Cougars lead in the 78th minute when referee awarded a penalty for a handball on Darren Williams. But Trott moved quickly to his right to save Ijahmon Mallory’s spotkick. That would prove to be Somerset’s last chance to get level as Cougars extended their lead in the 81st minute when a cross from substitute Brangman saw Coddington lob his header over the keeper.

Six minutes into injury time, Steede added a third for good measure when he got behind the Trojans defence and kept his calm to steer the ball past Bean.

“The penalty was definitely a turning point because after that save we felt like we were going to take it home,” said Cougars captain Caisey.

“It was a total team effort but I have to take my hat off to ‘Monk’ for saving that penalty. He really kept us in the game.

“We came up here with the mentality that we are not messing this up, we’re making history today. I feel blessed to be a part of a good group.”

Caisey gives credit, too, for the work done by coach Dennis Brown, the clear choice for coach of the year.

“He’s been solid, no nonsence when we trained and put in the work four times a week. It really paid off. I’m looking to get back at it again in pre-season. We’ll definitely have a motorcade tomorrow (today).”

Somerset: S Bean T Ming, I Mallory, J Rogers, J Harvey-Outerbridge, S Brangman, A Trott, J Bean, T Burgess (L Burgess 85), M Jones (T Harvey 90 minutes), T Wade (N Smith 76)

Yellow card: J Harvey-Outerbridge.

Dev. Cougars: K Trott; D Williams, D Cox, K Franks, L Tota, M Steede, Z Iris, C Caisey, D Coddington, D Bascome (C Trott 72), J Seymour (C Brangman 60)

Yellow cards: D Williams, L Tota, K Franks

Goals: M Steede (21, 90+6), D Coddington (81)

Referee: Anthony Francis.

Man of the match: Moses Steede (Cougars)

Photo by Akil Simmons Devonshire Cougars players, coaches and supporters celebrate winning the FA Cup at the National Sports Centre. Cougars defeated Somerset Trojans 3-0.

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Published April 07, 2013 at 10:21 pm (Updated April 07, 2013 at 10:21 pm)

Cougars claim Triple Crown

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