Young Warriors outclass Ireland Rangers
St. David’s Warriors 3 Ireland Rangers 1
Sporting at least five players in their late teens, a youthful St. David’s Warriors outfit played some attractive football to outshine their most western opponents in Ireland Rangers in Saturday’s action at St. David’s.
A goal by 18-year-old Cody Richardson, who opened the scoring, was followed up by a brace from 19-year-old Christian Lugo-Elibox, all in the first half, as the Warriors secured the points to stay within view of the front runners much to the delight of player/coach, Aaron Lugo.
“I was quite impressed with our performance today. We have been working on quite a few things and we saw it in the first half,” Lugo said.
“When we went 3-0 up, we lacked a little bit of concentration and went away from the plan. Overall, it was a good performance and hopefully, there are better things to come.”
St. David’s settled early and took control of the game from the opening whistle, as their attacking play had them 3-0 up by the 13th minute. Rangers defender Jared Hayward, had a bad clearance, which went directly to Cody Richardson at the top of the box. He would dribble a few steps before unleashing a low drive to the right of goalkeeper, Daishon Chin.
Before the dust could settle, St. David’s doubled their lead when Jamere Jervis’ cross took a deflection off a Rangers defender right into the path of Christen Lugo-Elibox, who rounded a diving Chin to tuck the ball into the empty net.
Within two minutes, St. David’s would put the game out of reach when they won possession of the ball in the midfield before Lugo-Elibox was released for a one-on-one with Chin. Lugo-Elibox kept his composure to side-foot pass the stranded keeper.
Veteran Rangers striker, Jonathan Bean, was the oldest player on the field but the most energetic as he forced St. David’s young goalkeeper Shomari Fox off his line to block his shot.
Bean then did well to ride two tackles before slipping the ball to his skipper Sekai Proctor, but he would shoot over from a good position.
Just prior to the break, young Fox was courageous to rush off his line to block a point-blank shot from Jahnai Ratteray, injuring himself in the process but he would soldier on to finish the game.
St. David’s started the second half as they finished but it was Rangers who had the first threatening attempt when a bad defensive clearance went straight up in the air inside the box.
Bean outjumped the hesitate goalkeeper but his header went wide.
Fox’s hesitance led to Rangers’ consolation goal late in the game when he misjudged a bouncing ball and then pulled down Rushaun Seaman in his attempt to retrieve it.
Referee Rashon Douglas awarded a penalty and while Fox did well to save Seaman’s spot kick, Proctor was first to the rebound to slip the ball under the diving goalkeeper.
St. David’s Warriors: C Richardson 6, C Lugo-Elibox 11, 13
Ireland Rangers: S Proctor
St. David’s Warriors (4-2-3-1): J Fox 6 ‒ J Jervis 6, M Proctor 5, D Butterfield 6, C Wellman 6 ‒ C Richardson 7, K Butterfield 6 ‒ B Furquan 5 (sub: D Minors 71), C Lugo-Elibox 8, A Paynter 6 ‒ D McCallan 5. Substitutes not used: A Lugo. Booked: K Butterfield.
Ireland Rangers (4-3-3): D Chin 5 ‒ J Hayward 5 (sub: S Wainwright 68, 5), J Fox 5, J Outerbridge 5, Y Durham 5 ‒ S Proctor 6, R Seaman 5, J Ratteray 5 (sub: K Burgess 59, 5) ‒ J Bean 7, Z Saltus-Seymour 6, J Fox 5. Substitutes not used: K Lambert. Booked: S Proctor.
Referee: R Douglas