Cougars fight back to frustrate Onions
Devonshire Cougars 3 Flanagan's Onions 1
Devonshire Cougars came from a goal down against Flanagan's Onions to earn a win in the Premier Division at Devonshire Recreation Club yesterday.
Flanagan's shocked the home side by taking an early lead through striker Keston Lewis.
The goal came in the tenth minute after an Onions midfielder had a shot on the Cougars goal, which was parried by the Cougars goalkeeper, Kioshi Trott, and Lewis was on hand to put the rebound home.
Rather than deflate Cougars though, the goal seemed to jolt them into life, as they immediately started to put passes together and create chances.
First, a long ball from deep in the Cougars' half found Cashun Brangman in space, but he put his shot wide of the goal.
Then, Charmari Burns, the Cougars' forward, had a free kick cleared away by the Onions defence and midfielder Mikkiel Thomas delivered a free kick that looked to be a certain goal, but Chejon Berkeley, the Onions' goalkeeper just managed to get fingertips to it to keep it out.
With all these close calls, it seemed like it would only be a matter of time before the home team found an equaliser. And that proved to be the case, as soon enough the Cougars were on level terms, though the source of the goal may have been a somewhat unlikely one. In the 25th minute, the home side were awarded a corner, and Kijuan Franks, the towering centre back, rose highest to steer the ball home and put his side back into the game.
The first half was a pretty even contest, but after the restart, Cougars' slowly began to seize control of the match, with coach Omar Butterfield's side outplaying their more experienced opponents in the second half.
The pace and trickery of Burns and Brangman, in particular, were beginning to cause headaches for Onions. Mick Ward, the Onions' coach, responded to this by bringing on Callon Burns, the speedy winger, for Bron Turner, to try and match up with the movement of the fleet-footed Cougars.
In spite of this change, Onions could do nothing to anticipate the goal that put Cougars ahead. Jawonday Smith picked up the ball and looked to chip it into the box for his onrushing striker. However, he put so much power in the chip that the ball flew into the back of the Onions' net.
The Cougars second goal brought an immediate response from the Onions' bench, as Treshun Smith was sent on for Peter Robey, with Onions determined to prevent Cougars' from getting into a rhythm. Miles Brewer was also brought on by the visitors to replace Markez Laws, who seemed to have a slight muscle strain.
Even with these new players entering the field, not much changed, as the momentum gained from their second goal, kept Cougars in control of the match. This momentum led to Cougars scoring an eye-catching third goal. Zeko White, the Cougars captain and midfielder, had been quietly pulling the strings all afternoon, and so perhaps it was only fitting that he scored the goal that finally put the game to bed.
White picked up the ball in the middle of the park, dribbled around the Onions' midfielders, waltzed untouched into the box and drove the ball firmly into the bottom corner to give the home team a 3-1 lead.
White's stunning solo effort seemed to crush Onions' resolve, as all the fight they had shown up to that point, soon evaporated.
Devonshire Cougars (4-4-2): K Trott – M Rudo, Zekiro White, K Franks, C Brangman (sub: Henry Stevens–Carty 87min) — S Jones, J Smith, Zeko White, M Thomas (sub: Nyrhobi Carmicheal 87min) — J Mallory, Charmari Burns (sub: C Maybury 67min). Substitutes not used: C Hardtman, Y Matthews, N Simmons, J Smith.
Flanagan's Onions (4-4-2): C Berkeley — R Calvert, Martel Laws, Markez Laws (sub: M Brewer 74min), J Scott — G Muir, B Turner (sub: Callon Burns 58min), P Robey (sub: T Smith 63min), C Graham — S Swan, K Lewis. Substitutes not used: A Brown, N Dunkle, S Gould, M Ward.
Referee: A Francis.