Late rally flatters Robin Hood as Boulevard Blazers storm through
Robin Hood 2 Boulevard Blazers 4
Boulevard earned their place in the final eight of the Dudley Eve Trophy following a strong performance against Robin Hood at Goose Gosling Field on Saturday night.
Two goals in each half provided safe passage from the losers bracket for the back-of-town club, even as a late surge from Hood flattered the scoreline.
Hood got off to the most disappointing of starts, with the customary safe hands of veteran goalkeeper Timothy Figureido proving anything but in the sixth minute, as he made a hash of a routine save.
Ian Coke’s curling free-kick from the left edge of the penalty area was met with a weak header by Anthony Williams, which bounced softly towards Figureido, who failed to hold and control, eventually fumbling the ball over the goal-line.
Hesitation in front of goal cost Ereico Outerbridge a chance at drawing Hood level in the 10th minute when well placed inside the box with his headed effort not receiving Figureido-like charity from Blazers’ goalkeeper Azir Harvey.
Hood pressure produced two corners as the match reached the half-hour mark, but this period of ascendancy would end in failure when the attack-minded Kamali Davis latched on to a clearance with his superior pace to outstrip a compromised defence and place his effort firmly past an exposed Figureido to execute a perfect counter move.
Confidence brimming, Boulevard pressed further following the break, tripling their advantage in the 57th minute after another dazzling display from Davis laid the groundwork for Jahzardae Samuels to score.
Picking the ball up near midfield, Davis drew attention from multiple defenders before sending the ball across the pitch to an onrushing Samuels, whose powerful drive gained a deflection on its way into the back of the net.
All appeared dead for Robin Hood. That is until Tajai Goater offered a glimmer of hope when pulling a goal back in the 80th minute, but substitute Enyche Zuill quickly restored a three-goal advantage for Blazers to Shannon Burchall’s 89h minute goal for Hood no more than cosmetic.
Boulevard coach Jomar Wilkinson was satisfied with the result but is aware that the quality of upcoming opponents will get stronger.
“When I look at the competition and our level of play, I think that the first two games were good, where we had structure,” said Wilkinson.
“In the third game, we lost that structure and saw the worst of our team.
“Today we wanted to make sure that we bounced back and turned in a real team performance, rather than act as individuals as we had in our last outing and we did a good job of that.
“We used the ball well tonight and were sound defensively. We still have a long way to go, but we’re going to trust in the process and look to go from strength to strength.”
Robin Hood: Goater 80, Burchall 89.
Boulevard: Figueido own goal 6, Davis 31, Samuels 57, Zuill 83
Robin Hood (4-3-1-2): T Figureido 6 -- N Outerbridge 6, N Massa 6, A Simons 6, M Hollis 6 -- L Evans 7 E Outerbridge 6, N Edwards -- K Naylor 6 --S Burchall 7, T Goater 6 (sub: D Simmons, 82min). Substitutes not used: T Lowe, B Tyson-Gooden. Booked: E Outerbridge, D Smith (coach).
Boulevard (3-4-1-2): A Harvey 7 -- A Williams 7, D Williams 7, Z Stovell 6 (N Augustus, 75) --T Taylor (sub: S Woolridge, 64 6), Q Maynard 6, A Famous 6, T Walker 6 (sub: C Darrell, 65 5) -- I Coke 7 (sub: E Zuill, 75) -- J Samuels 7, K Davis 7 (sub: D Hendrickson, 75). Substitute not used: R Murphy. Booked: J Samuels.
Referee: T Simons.