Lightbourne: we gifted Antigua two goals
Bermuda suffered a 3-2 defeat to Antigua and Barbuda in the opening match of their two-match trip to the Caribbean last night.
The home side, who like Bermuda brought back professional players for the match, took the lead in the 13th minute when a bad back pass let in Rhys Browne, who plays for Yeovil Town of Sky Bet League Two, to score. Midfielder Zeiko Lewis, who has just signed for Icelandic club FH, equalised in the 24th minute as the teams went in at 1-1 at the half.
Further goals came in the second half as Josh Parker, of League One Gillingham restored the Antigua lead in the 58th minute before Myles Weston, a player with Vanarama National League side Ebbsfleet United, extended the home team's lead to 3-1 in the 61st with a good finish from just inside the box on the right side.
Bermuda made a double substitution soon after, bringing on midfielder Marco Warren and college student Justin Donawa for Lewis and Lejuan Simmons in a bid to get back into the match. Within three minutes captain Reggie Lambe closed the deficit to 3-2 in the 70th minute and then Donawa went close to equalising when he struck the upright.
“Man for man we played fairly good, we dealt with them in the first half and were unfortunate to go in at 1-1,” said Kyle Lightbourne, the Bermuda coach. “I thought we were the better team, but we then gifted them two goals and you can't do that against international teams.”
Bermuda made two more substitutions in the second half, bringing on Cecoy Robinson for Willie Clemons and Liam Evans for Donte Brangman in a bid to pull the goal back late in the match. They applied some late pressure but Antigua held on.
Bermuda leave today for Miami where they will spend the night before arriving in Barbados tomorrow ahead of their second match on Sunday against Barbados.
Bermuda: J Hill, D Usher, N Griffith, J Bather, C Castle, R Lee, Z Lewis (sub: M Warren), W Clemons (sub: C Robinson), D Brangman (sub: L Evans), R Lambe, L Simmons (sub: J Donawa).