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St George’s survive late onslaught to end season on a high

Jarreau Hayward, coach of St George's (Photograph by Lawrence Trott)

Somerset Eagles 2 St George’s 3

St. George’s Colts held strong, despite late pressure, to finish off their domestic campaign with a determined victory over Somerset Eagles at White Hill Field yesterday.

The visitors took control of proceedings early on, keeping the ball well under pressure and took the lead midway through the first half, pouncing on an error from the Eagles’ backline as they tried to pass out from the defence.

Jahkai Brangman managed to win possession and thread a ball through for Nzari Paynter, who slotted home at the far post.

Eagles nearly equalised immediately afterwards from a quick exchange involving Ethan Fubler, Jensen Rogers and Anwar Telford. The latter found Shakir Smith, who made space for himself before dragging a low shot wide of the near post.

St George’s added two more to their tally within the first 10 minutes of the second half.

They again took advantage of uncertain defending after Eagles failed to clear a whipped cross by Alleyne Francis from the right flank and the visitors recycled it for Cavun Ottley to side-foot his effort into the far top-corner past Joshua Roberts in goal.

A few minutes later, Christian King swung in a cross from the opposite flank but it struck the hand of Eagles defender Khimo Harrison resulting a penalty kick for St George’s. Sage Blair-Paynter stepped up to convert the resulting spot kick, firing into the roof of the net.

Eagles pushed back as the half wore on with Colts seemingly losing concentration and intensity.

The hosts managed to pull back a goal just after the hour mark with a well-constructed goal as Fubler turned past his marker and found Rogers, who then picked out the overlapping run of Marcus Iris-Simmons. The left-back squared for Smith to tap home from close range.

They should have cut the deficit down to one a few minutes later when Dupray Joell picked out Fubler, who scuffed his shot straight at Zeko Burgess.

Minutes before the end, the home side made it 3-2 after Rogers spotted the run of Smith, who was taken down by Jai Burgess. He picked himself up and slotted home from the spot moments later to set up a tense finish.

“This is a good three points to end the season with,” said Colts head coach Jarreau Hayward.

“I am looking forward to next season. Everyone needs to add that extra one per cent, and collectively we will improve,” Hayward added. “We need to be an established top-tier team. That is our aim for next term.”

SCORERS

Somerset Eagles: Smith 62, 82 pen

St George’s: Paynter 31, C Ottley 49, Blair-Paynter 52 pen

TEAMS

Somerset Eagles (4-3-1-2): J Roberts 6 – K Astwood 5, K Harrison 6, W Tucker 5, M Iris-Simmons 5 – D Joell 5, R Saggar 5, J Rogers 6 – E Fubler 5 – S Smith 6, A Telford 5. Substitutes not used: D Simmons. Booked: Saggar, Fubler, Telford, Iris-Simmons

St George’s Colts (4-2-3-1): Z Burgess 5 – N Paynter 6, J Brangman 5 (sub: A Smith 73min), J Wales 6 (sub: E Signor 84), A Francis 5 – J Burgess 6, P Anderson 5 – C Ottley 6 (sub: J Darrell 84), J Dickinson 7, C King 6 (sub: L Dill 58 5) – S Blair-Paynter 6 (sub: K Ottley 73). Substitutes not used: C Burns Booked: A Smith

Referee: D Jackson

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Published April 04, 2022 at 7:59 am (Updated April 04, 2022 at 11:59 am)

St George’s survive late onslaught to end season on a high

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