Defence Force forward Devorn Jorsling unleashed all his fury, netting all four goals in his side’s 4-2 win over St. Ann’s Rangers on Saturday as the Army/Coast Guard combination marched into the semi-finals of the 2016 First Citizens Cup.
Jorsling opened his account from the penalty spot before ending with two goals on either side of the half, while Dylon King and substitute Marvin Lee each had a goal in the second period for Rangers, who had stunned the soldiers 2-0 in their opening Digicel Pro League clash this season on Oct. 2.
Ma Pau Stars also progressed to the Nov. 22 semi-finals by ousting First Citizens Cup holders W Connection 3-0 in a penalty shootout following a goalless draw in the second game of the quarter-final round double-header at the Couva venue.
Defence Force, champions in 2002 and 2009, must await the outcome of Sunday’s quarter-final clash between Central FC and Morvant Caledonia United from 3:30pm at the Morvant Recreation Ground to know their semi-final opponents, while Ma Pau Stars advances to face the winners between Point Fortin Civic and Police, who face each other in the final quarter-final contest on Monday from 6pm at the Ato Boldon Stadium.
Jorsling handed Defence Force a 1-0 lead from the penalty spot on 11 minutes when he sent Rangers goalkeeper Cleon John the wrong way after referee Cecile Hinds ruled a handball against Sedale Mc Lean inside the area.
Jorsling, a former Pro League Player of the Year and multiple-time Golden Boot winner, made it 2-0 in the 19th minute with a sweet left-footed volley off a right side Curtis Gonzales cross, and increased his side’s lead to 3-0 five minutes inside the second after he was picked out in the area by a short Gonzales pass.
Rangers, who were lucky not to concede when Thurlani George rattled John’s crossbar on the half hour mark, managed to pull back two goals in the second half following improved play with King hitting past goalkeeper Sheldon Clarke from above the area in the 53rd minute and substitute Lee -- less than a minute on -- hammering his effort into the roof of the Army net on 72 minutes from a corner.
But Jorsling quelled Rangers’ comeback attempt six minutes. After collecting a pass inside the area, Jorsling steered the ball past ‘keeper John for his fourth and a 4-2 finish in favour of Defence Force, who had edged Club Sando 1-0 last Tuesday in the play-offs.
“It’s a great feeling every time I score, more so to score four,” Jorsling told www.ttproleague.com after the game. “We had something personal against Rangers [having lost to them in our previous meeting].”
Defence Force are without a win in their last four league games and both Jorsling and head coach Marvin Gordon believe it was important that their side also use the First Citizens Cup to build in confidence and performances as they attempt to climb out of the bottom half of the DPL table.
Gordon praised the performance of Jorsling, saying, “He (Jorsling) is really a big player. He was brilliant tonight in the 18-yard box and when we really needed the fourth goal he got it for the team. A lot of times people criticise him saying ‘he is too slow’ but as coach I have all confidence in him. Year in, year out you will see he is a top striker and I will continue to believe in him.”
But Gordon added that although his team enjoyed the better start by moving the ball well and creating chances for the two early goals, he believes complacency and poor defending by his players allowed Rangers a chance to build in their performance and grow in belief.
“But to the end we were brilliant, pulling ourselves back in with the fourth goal to really widen the gap,” Gordon continued. “I thought we should have scored more goals tonight and I thought defensively we were bad. As a team it is something we have to work on because we won’t get an easier game in the semi-finals and the rest of the competition.”
W Connection, in the second quarter-final on the night, were a well-gelled unit, led by experienced attacking midfielders Andre Toussaint and Hughtun Hector, but poor finishing saw the seven-time former First Citizens Cup champions bow out.
Literally, Connection had camped in the Ma Pau Stars’ half in the first period and had clear-cut second half misses from Kevon Goddard, Jabari Mitchell and Toussaint, while the Stars had left it for late, really flaring up near the end following the arrival of Anthony Wolfe, Kerry Baptiste and Carlos Edwards off the bench to compliment former Connection forward Jerrel Britto.
But after both sides failed to find a winner in regular time, it was down to the penalty shootout in which Connection were still unable to find their scoring boots.
Meanwhile Stars’ goalkeeper Glenroy Samuel, picking up where he left off with three saves in a 3-1 penalty shootout win over San Juan Jabloteh in the play-offs last Tuesday, gave Ma Pau the early advantage by denying Hector on the first kick.
Connection’s miseries grew by every kick from the spot with Baptiste, Edwards and Hayden Tinto, in that order, all clinical against Savonetta Boysgoalkeeper Terrence Lewis, whose teammates Alvin Jones and Kurt Frederick struck the post from the spot.
“It’s a norm for me,” explained Samuel, a former Trinidad and Tobago Under-17 and Under-20 World Cup player. “It has to do with hard work and the encouragement from the coaching staff, my parents, family and others. It gives me the vibe to come out and do it for the club. I had no fear facing W Connection, it was just about keeping my focus and doing what the coach thought me. It’s my job to help the team.”
“It’s hard coming out of the First Citizens Cup,” said a disappointed W Connection assistant coach and former player Earl Jean. “It’s a Cup we cherish a lot. I don’t want to be too hard on our players because they had a good game. It’s just that they had to take the chances—goals win matches.”
Connection were without a number of players including first choice goalie Julani Archibald, who along with St. Kitts/Nevis teammate Gerard Williams and Trinidad and Tobago defender Daneil Cyrus are on international duty.
“We were missing some players tonight but still we had a strong squad. We are just disappointed in our finishing. Our game was good and our players are doing what we want and dominating the game and creating chances. It’s just for them to put the ball into the back of the net,” concluded Jean.
First Citizens Cup 2016
Play-off Round results
(Tuesday, November 8, 2016)
Club Sando 0 vs Defence Force 1 (Hashim Arcia 53’), at the Ato Boldon Stadium;
San Juan Jabloteh 1 (Kennedy Hinkson 81’) vs Ma Pau Stars 1 (Kerry Daniel 57’)
Ma Pau Stars won the game 3-1 on kicks from the penalty mark, at the Ato Boldon Stadium.
Kicks from the penalty spot
Ma Pau Stars 3 San Juan Jabloteh 1
Elton John (saved) Josiah Trimmingham (scored)
Neil Mitchell (scored) Tyrone Charles (saved)
Keryn Navarro (scored) Nathan Lewis (saved)
Hayden Tinto (scored) Kion Joseph (saved)
Quarter Final Round
(Saturday, November 12, 2016)
St. Ann’s Rangers 2 (Dylon King 53’, Marvin Lee 72’) vs Defence Force 4 (Devorn Jorsling 11’ pen, 19’, 50’, 84’), at the Ato Boldon Stadium;
W Connection 0 vs Ma Pau Stars 0, at the Ato Boldon Stadium.
Ma Pau Stars won 3-0 on kicks from the penalty spot after a 0-0 draw.
W Connection 0 Ma Pau Stars 3
Hughtun Hector (saved) Kerry Baptiste (scored)
Alvin Jones (post) Carlos Edwards (scored)
Kurt Frederick (post) Hayden Tinto (scored)
(Sunday, November 13, 2016)
Morvant Recreation Ground
Central FC vs Morvant Caledonia United—3:30pm (B)
(Monday, November 14, 2016)
Ato Boldon Stadium
Police FC vs Point Fortin Civic—6pm (A)
Semi Final Round
A vs Ma Pau Stars
B vs Defence Force
Teams at the Ato Boldon Stadium on Saturday
Defence Force: 25.Sheldon Clarke (GK), 3.Jamali Garcia, 8.Christopher Durity (23.Kerry Joseph 65th minute), 9.Devorn Jorsling (2.Glynn Franklyn 89th minute), 10.Hashim Arcia (35.Tirek George 81st minute), 13.Marvin Jones, 17.Curtis Gonzales, 19.Thurlani George, 21.Aklie Edwards (Yellow Card), 26.Justin Garcia, 99.Jerwyn Balthazar (Capt.).
Unused substitutes: 1.Andre Marchan (GK), 5.Devin Jordan, 15.Brandon Fountain, 22.Anthony Charles.
Coach: Marvin Gordon
St. Ann’s Rangers: 1.Cleon John (GK), 5.Devon Drayton, 6.Dylon King, 7.Sedale Mc Lean, 8.Jameel Antoine, 10.Devon Modeste, 11.Kazim Donald (9.Jomoul Francois 55th minute), 16.Richard Williams, 21.Josh Toussaint (32.Marvin Lee 71st minute), 28.Shakiyl Phillip (Capt.), 33.Osaze Springer.
Unused substitutes: 19.Tafari Williams, 20.Kareem Baptiste, 22.Christopher Biggette (GK), 30.Lester Durham.
Coach: Anthony Streete
Referee: Cecile Hinds
Assistant Referee 1: Kevin Lewis
Assistant Referee 2: Rashby Mc Phie (Joseph Bertrand 46th minute)
Fourth Official: Joseph Bertrand (Rashby Mc Phie 46th minute)
W Connection: 1.Terrence Lewis (GK), 2.Kurt Frederick, 4.Maurice Ford, 13.Hughtun Hector (Capt.), 14.Andre Toussaint (Yellow Card), 16.Alvin Jones (Yellow Card), 17.Aikim Andrews (20.Jamal Charles 70th minute), 21.Rondell Paul (Yellow Card), 23.Kevon Goddard, 34.Jabari Mitchell (43.Malik St. Prix 79th minute), 35.Jesus Perez.
Unused substitutes: 26.Shaquille Bertrand, 30.Shaquille John, 33.Aquelius Sylvester (GK), 40.Isaisah Garcia, 46.Anfernee Frederick.
Coach: Stuart Charles Fevrier
Ma Pau Stars: 22.Glenroy Samuel (GK), 5.Taryk Sampson, 7.Kerry Daniel (Yellow Card), 9.Jason Scotland (23.Anthony Wolfe 56th minute) (Yellow Card), 10.Jerrel Britto, 11.Elton John, 16.Kareem Eastman (2.Carlos Edwards 77th minute), 17.Hayden Tinto, 19.Glenton Wolffe, 21.Neil Mitchell (4.Kerry Baptiste 75th minute), 25.Keryn Navarro (Capt.).
Unused substitutes: 1.Shane Mattis (GK), 6.Neil Mitchell, 8.Adrian Noel, 12.Sayid Freitas.
Coach: Ross Russell
Referee: Rodphin Harris
Assistant Referee 1: Ainsley Rochard
Assistant Referee 2: Caleb Wales
Fourth Official: Crystal Sobers