South Zone players, Qwesi Weston of Shiva Boys Hindu College and Kayla Taylor of Debe Secondary were recognised as the top players of the recently concluded season, when the Secondary Schools Football League (SSFL) staged its annual awards ceremony, at the Plaza de Montrose, Chaguanas, yesterday.
Weston, which played reliably in the positions of a goalkeeper and a striker, helped Shiva Boys to its first ever Coca-Cola South Zone InterCol title and a national semifinal. He got the nod ahead of four other top players. They were national youth attackers Shackiel Henry, who scored over 25 goals for Presentation College of San Fernando and Marcus Gomez, who was pivotal in Arima North’s East Zone league victory this season, along with Weston’s teammate Nathaniel Garcia and captain of successive national InterCol champions St Anthony’s College, Jamali Garcia, all of whom made up the top five players of the year.
In the senior girls’ division, Taylor, who scored 26 goals in all competitions this season led the country’s most recognised force in girls’ football, Debe Secondary, to yet another league, Big-Four and national InterCol title.
Taylor, who also won the prize in 2010, had been outstanding for the past several years and was expected to receive the award.
She, along with St Joseph’s leading scorer Maya Matouk, St Augustine attacker Naomi Guerra and Natiesha Radgman of Bishop’s High of Tobago’s, which finished runner-up in the Big-Four and national InterCol competitions, were the top five players of the year in the girls’ division.
The treasured trophy of the SSFL would be handed to St Anthony’s College, which for the second year running and for a record sixth time in its history (joint with Naparima College), won the national InterCol. The “Tigers”, led by coach Nigel Grosvenor defeated St Augustine Secondary 2-0 in the final, some two weeks ago.
The league, despite being graced with several exciting moments, experienced several hiccups this season, not limited to the several postponements and replays in matches, which caused gripes between affected schools. There was also the unfortunate attack on an assistant referee by a fan during the South Zone InterCol final, which was abandoned and eventually replayed.
President of the SSFL, Ewing Davis, in the feature address to a packed room, which included players, coaches, parents and sponsors, and representative of the Sport Company of T&T (SporTT) shared that it was the responsibility of the SSFL committees to ensure the league remain competitive, but without unnecessary risk.
Davis cited a moment which “brought sadness to football” and almost brought the game into disrepute, and said that measures will be put in place to deter such actions in the future.
He added that a committee has since been put in place to ensure that if a spectator interrupts a match, and he is shown to be in support of a specific team, his team will be penalised.
“In the last instance, we did not have such regulations in place because we did not anticipate such actions which would bring the game into disrepute,” he said.
Awards were also distributed to the champions of the lower divisions, including the Form One, Giants (Under-14 Boys), Under-15 Girls, Junior Division (Under-16 Boys), Senior Division Under-20 Girls), Senior Division (Under-20 Boys) and Reserve Division.
2012 All Star teams
Goalkeepers: Qwesi Weston (Shiva), Kevin Dodds (San Juan North).
Defenders: Kern Alexis (Carapichaima), Kegan Ellis (Pres S/do), Mathiaus Halls (Pres S/do), Triston Hodge (St Augustine), Hakeem Louis (Mason Hall), Jamali Garcia (St Anthony’s).
Midfielders: Yohance Alexander (Pres S/do), Nathaniel Garcia (Shiva Boys), Keane McIvor (St Anthony’s), Akeem Garcia (St Augustine), Shannon Gomez (St Augustine).
Forwards: Shackiel Henry (Pres S/do), Aaqil Campbell (East Mucurapo), Shaquille Holder (Carapichaima), Marcus Gomez, Mikhail Gordon (Scarborough).
2012 SSFL Boys’ Player of the Year: Qwesi Weston.
Goalkeepers: Natiesha Radgman (Bishop’s, Tobago), Dana Le Platte (Holy Name Convent).
Defenders: Teneisha Cobham (Vessigny), Rinelle Findley (P/Fortin East), Shauntelle Baptiste (Providence), Tiffany Richards (Toco), Chelsea Marie Spence (St Francois).
Midfielders: Maya Matouk (St Joseph’s, POS), Naomi Guerra (St Augustine), Patrice Vincent (Debe), Chelsea Gibbs (St Augustine), Shenelle Arjoon (Debe).
Forwards: Kristen Julien (Bishop’s, Tobago), Khadidra Debisette (Vessigny), Kayla Taylor (Debe), Ashley Mark (Arima North), Celeste Thomas (St Augustine), Chelcy Ralph.
2012 SSFL Girls’ Player of the Year: Kayla Taylor.