Sports

UWI hand Portmore another lesson

Portmore United 1 East (51st) UWI 2 Bernal (19th), Thenstead (55th)

By Howard Walker
Observer senior reporter
walkerh@jamaicaobserver.com

Monday, January 14, 2019

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THE University of the West Indies (UWI) FC stunned champions Portmore United 2-1 in their Red Stripe Premier League game at Spanish Town Prison Oval yesterday to regain a top six position.

Andre Bernal opened the scoring for the visiting UWI in the 19th minute, but Javon East pulled Portmore United level in minute 51. But just four minutes later Akeem Thenstead restored UWI's advantage, which they held to the end.

It was UWI's ninth win from 22 games and they gained a position to be sixth on 30 points, while leaders Portmore United remained on 39 points with just their fourth defeat of the season.

The champions still hold a two-point lead as second-placed Cavalier FC crashed 0-2 to Humble Lion at Effortville and remained on 37 points.

Portmore United only have themselves to blame as they started slowly but had enough chances in the second half to at least walk away with a point. But substitute Rondee Smith missed two very good chances, kicking high on both occasion.

Portmore's usual solid backline, led by Rosario Harriott, looked shaky and was exposed early with balls over the top, and it was from one of those attacks that UWI scored when Bernal met Patrick Brown's left-sided cross with a towering header.

But Portmore responded to coach Shavar Thomas's half-time talk and came out firing with the introduction of Rondee Smith and Cleon Pryce at the start of the second half.

The normally deadly East should have scored but kicked high from close range, but they would get the equaliser as East redeemed himself and slotted home in minute 51 after goalkeeper Amal Knight failed to hold onto a low drive by Pryce.

With their tails up Portmore gained the ascendency and again poor defending allowed Thenstead to sneak in and chipp the advancing goalkeeper Shaven Paul for the winner.

Winning coach Andrew Peart was happy for the three points as they push for a play-off spot in a tight mid-table race.

“It's a good addition to our points tally and especially to our confidence as well, coming to the home of the leaders and winning, that is very commendable to our team. I think the effort from our team was very good,” said Peart.

For his counterpart Shavar Thomas, disappointment was etched all over his face after his team turned in a clinker.

“It's a tough loss and I am very disappointed. If it was a case where UWI came and dominated and put us under pressure, put us on the back foot, I would lift my hands up and say they were better than us; but that wasn't the case,” said Thomas.

TEAMS:

Portmore United — Shaven Paul, Osani Ricketts, Roberto Johnson, Rosario Harriott, Donnegy Fer (Rondee Smith 46th), Chavany Willis, Emelio Rousseau, Javon East, Venton Evans, Hardley Barnes (Cleon Pryce 46th), Carlos Barrett (Roshane Sharpe 76th)

Subs not used: Benjamin Williams, Damian Williams, Saneekie Burton, Damano Solomon

Booked: Ricketts (22nd)

UWI — Amal Knight, Deno Schaffe, Michael Heaven, Javoy Belnavis, Jerondy Henry, Ramoun Reid, Patrick Brown (Taniel McKenzie 86th), Fabian McCarthy, Andre Bernal (Dawayne Smith 63rd), Rochane Smith, Akeem Thenstead (Kemar Flemmings 79th)

Subs not used: George Brown, Davion Garrison, Stephen Barnett, Ryan Miller

Booked: Schaffe (67th), Patrick Brown (80th)

Referee: Odette Hamilton

Assistant referees: Princess Brown, Melvin Reid

Fourth official: Andrew Hayden

Match commissary: Delroy Joseph


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