Defence Force settled a burning score against Rangers, the side they failed to defeat in two previous meetings, by overcoming the St. Ann’s club 3-1 on Saturday afternoon in a round-of-16 clash of the 2015 Toyota Classic.
Richard Roy converted from the penalty spot yesterday to give Defence Force a 1-0 lead on the 26th minute at the Larry Gomes Stadium after Rangers' goalie Stefan Berkeley was adjudged to have fouled Ross Russell Jr. in the process of keeping out a rebound effort.
Berkeley had spilled a long-range strike from defender Glynn Franklyn before making contact with Russell in contest for the spilled rebound.
Rangers head coach and former Defence Force man, Angus Eve, was still expressing his fury at the touchline over referee Rodphin Harris' decision to award the penalty when the soldiers doubled their tally by the half-hour mark.
Russell made good on a Kishon Seecharan cross by hitting past Berkeley from inside the box for the 2-0 cushion.
However Rangers sliced the soldiers lead in half in the 39th minute when Sayid Freitas sent a free-kick around a poorly-positioned wall and into the bottom corner of Sheldon Clarke’s net for a 2-1 score.
That goal came ten minutes after Rangers forward Rasheed Simon struck wide of the target in a situation where he should have done better after a lapse by the Defence Force back-line allowed him a free run at goal inside the area.
Then just before the break Keron Cornwall failed to replicate a free-kick goal, hitting narrowly over-bar, following a foul on goal-scorer Freitas just above the box.
But Defence Force restored their two-goal advantage with a 3-1 score by the 63rd minute when midfielder Kerry Joseph headed past Berkeley off a Marvin Jones left-side corner.
The result snapped a two-match winless run against Rangers, who defeated Defence Force 2-1 last May in their final Digicel Pro League match of the 2014-15 season and held the soldiers to a 1-1 draw in September at the start of the 2015-16 DPL campaign.
Berkeley, who denied Seecharan with a low save on the 22nd minute, pulled off another low save, this time with the leg, to keep out a 77th-minute strike by Jerwyn Balthazar, who had struck the base of the upright moments inside the second period.
Other decided quarter-final match-ups of the 2015 Toyota Classic includes Central FC versus Morvant Caledonia United while 2012 champions North East Stars must tackle 2005, 2011 and 2013 champions W Connection.
The final match-up will be determined today (Sunday) after Guaya United welcomes Police FC from 3 pm at the Guayaguayare Recreation Ground, and simultaneously at the Mannie Ramjohn Stadium, Super League side Marabella Family Crisis Centre take on defending Toyota Classic champions San Juan Jabloteh.
St. Ann’s Rangers 1 (Sayid Freitas 39) vs Defence Force (Pro League) 3 (Richard Roy 26, Ross Russell Jr. 30, Kerry Joseph 63)
St. Ann's Rangers: 1.Stefan Berkeley (Yellow Card); 2.Shakiyl Phillip, 4.Jelani Peters (Yellow Card), 5.Miguel Romeo (Capt.), 23.Sayid Freitas, 7.Sedale Mc Lean, 9.Keron Cornwall, 45.Kadeem Corbin (11.Josh Toussaint), 19.Rasheed Simon, 16.Richard Williams, 6.Shaquille Moses
Unused substitutes: 14.Jemel Berot, 17.Kadeem Hutchinson, 18.Trevin Latapy, 21.Keon Peters, 22.Christopher Biggette (GK), 29.Jameel Antoine
Coach: Angus Eve
Defence Force: 25.Sheldon Clarke; 8.Curtis Gonzales, 2.Glynn Franklyn, 17.Ross Russell Jr., 13.Marvin Jones, 4.Dave Long, 12.Jemel Sebro (Yellow Card) (7.Jelani Felix), 23.Kerry Joseph (Yellow Card) (18.Sean Narcis), 26.Richard Roy (9.Devorn Jorsling), 30.Kishon Seecharan, 99.Jerwyn Balthazar (Capt.)
Unused substitutes: 6.Rodell Elcock, 16.Kellon Serrette, 21.Aklie Edwards, 80.Aaron Enill (GK)
Coach: Marvin Gordon
Match Referee: Rodphin Harris