Somerset’s women stay on course for double
Somerset Trojans Big Ballers kept alive their hopes of a league and cup double when they advanced to the Women’s League Knockout Cup final last night with a 2-0 win over Dandy Stars at the BFA Field.
Two semi-finals were scheduled but the opening match between Footy Queens and PHC was not played after Footy Queens informed the Bermuda Football Association earlier in the day that they would not be able to field a team, giving PHC a free pass into the final on Friday night at Goose Gosling Field.
Dandy Stars were short, too, fielding only ten players for the entire match as the league champions were in full control, although only able to turn that dominance into goals in the second of two 30-minute halves.
Jya Ratteray-Smith went close for Somerset in the thirteenth minute when she had a shot hit the base of the upright after a corner on the left. Dandy Stars had to wait until the 27th minute for their first corner.
Two minutes after that Somerset had an effort disallowed for offside after a shot from Ratteray-Smith was initially blocked.
Somerset continued to do most of the attacking in the second half but could not find that final touch as K’Xiyae Gibbons, normally a centre back but filling in because the regular goalkeeper was abroad, stood firm.
Gibbons was finally beaten eight minutes into the second half when captain Eva Frazzoni had an initial shot blocked before Kimika Jackson sent the ball back into the box for Frazzoni to score at the second attempt.
Dandy Stars were hampered even further when striker Alana Burchall suffered a leg injury midway through the second half and was restricted in her movement after she carried on following treatment.
Somerset made certain of the victory with a second goal three minutes from the end when Ratteray-Smith shifted on to her left foot before striking a low shot inside the post from the edge of the box.
“Sometimes teams play better with ten and it wasn’t an easy thing for us, they sat and we tried to break them down,” said Frazzoni, the Bermuda captain.
“The first goal is always the hardest one to get, but after that we settled and controlled the game. I was happy to score and do what I had to for my team.”
Frazzoni added: “We’ve had a successful season, and a fun one; a lot of people have come out who haven’t played in a long time. At the end of the day it’s about growing women’s football, so I do hope that next season teams won’t struggle for numbers.
“But it is the beginning and is something we’re trying to overcome. Friday will definitely be a good game as PHC have some quality players, but we also have quality.”
Victoria Davis had a solid game in the heart of the Somerset defence, as did Frazzoni in midfield, and Jazaé Smith and Ratteray-Smith up front.
Somerset, too, were missing some key players, including national team pair Koa Goodchild and Emily Cabral. “It’s coming to that time in the summer when people have family things and are going back to school,” Frazzoni said.
“That’s something we do struggle with on the women’s side, but hopefully as it grows stronger it will be football first.”
The women’s final will start at 7pm on Friday, to be followed by the under-23 men’s final at 9pm between BAA and Somerset.
In the semi-finals on Monday, BAA edged North Village 2-1 while Somerset Trojans defeated North Village on penalty kicks after a 2-2 drawat the end of regulation.