W Connection (15 points) rebounded from an early deficit to defeat third-positioned Defence Force FC (7 points) 2-1 courtesy strikes from star forwards Marcus ‘Lobo’ Joseph and Kadeem Corbin once more to stay perfect at the top of the Pro League standings after five games following an electrifying double-header at the Ato Boldon Stadium on Friday night.
San Juan Jabloteh, in the opening clash, edged fourth-positioned Club Sando (7 points) 1-0 through attacker Jomoul Francois’ fourth league goal of the campaign to temporarily go atop the ladder with 14 points.
Francois, afterwards, reminded of his promise to himself to give 100 percent effort every time he takes to the field in memory of his late mother, Keisha Francois, who passed away last February.
“I’ve made a commitment to honour my mother with my performances,” explained the 22-year-old winger who has now scored in three consecutive games for the Keith Jeffrey coached-San Juan Kings. “Every game I’m putting in 100 percent, and when I put in that kind of work good things are happening.”
“It was a really good goal – I felt really proud of myself,” he said of his latest goal – a superb right-footed strike from the top of the box in the 43rd minute which he curled beyond a sea of orange Sando shirts and goalkeeper Stefan Berkeley to earn Jabloteh a fourth straight.
Corbin, in the 55th minute of the second game, scored an identical strike for his third league goal of the season when he beat Defence Force goalkeeper Sheldon Clarke and put Connection (15 points) in front 2-1.
Clarke denied Corbin a second ten minutes later but injured the Connection forward in the process and forcing a change from coach Stuart Charles Fevrier, who opted to add some steel in midfield in the form of Kierron Mason.
Defence Force also suffered a blow when former Connection star attacking midfielder Hashim Arcia had to be replaced by Shaquille Bertrand through injury with 18 minutes left following a challenge by Kevon Goddard.
The Marvin Gordon coached-Defence Force had taken a 1-0 lead after 14 minutes through a Brent Sam header at goalkeeper Julani Archibald’s near post from a right side corner.
But Joseph, this season’s leading frontman, levelled Connection in stoppage-time of the first half with a header off an Isaiah Garcia cross after a Jomal Williams effort cannoned off the bar.
Joseph, who troubled Clarke and the netting midway through the first half, has now scored in six consecutive outings in all competitions for Connection to put his overall tally at 14 goals, seven of them in the league.
Jomal Williams was denied a second time by the frame, smashing a free kick onto the crossbar with two minutes left, moments after he was quelled by Clarke, who also made stops to deny Kurt Frederick and Briel Thomas.
Pro League play continues today (Saturday) with North East Stars hosting St. Ann’s Rangers from 4pm at Larry Gomes Stadium and Point Fortin Civic welcoming Police FC from 6pm at Mahaica Oval.
The weekend’s action will also see Central FC and Morvant Caledonia United lock horns from 4pm on Sunday at Ato Boldon Stadium.
Round 1 Match Day 5 results
(Friday 24 August)
San Juan Jabloteh 1 (Jomoul Francois 43’) vs Club Sando 0, at Ato Boldon Stadium;
Defence Force FC 1 (Brent Sam 14’) vs W Connection 2 (Marcus Joseph 45’+1, Kadeem Corbin 55’), at Ato Boldon Stadium.
Round 1 Match Day 5
(Saturday 25 August)
Point Fortin Civic vs Police FC, 6pm at Mahaica Oval;
North East Stars vs St. Ann’s Rangers, 4pm at Larry Gomes Stadium.
(Sunday 26 August)
Central FC vs Morvant Caledonia United, 4pm at Ato Boldon Stadium.
Round 1 Match Day 6
(Tuesday 28 August)
Club Sando vs North East Stars, 6pm at Ato Boldon Stadium;
San Juan Jabloteh vs Defence Force FC, 8pm at Ato Boldon Stadium;
St. Ann’s Rangers vs Police FC, 4pm at Larry Gomes Stadium.
(Wednesday 29 August)
Central FC vs Point Fortin Civic, 6pm at Ato Boldon Stadium;
Morvant Caledonia United vs W Connection, 8pm at Hasely Crawford Stadium.
(Saturday 01 September)
St. Ann’s Rangers vs Morvant Caledonia United, 4pm at Ato Boldon Stadium;
Defence Force FC vs Police FC, 6pm at Ato Boldon Stadium.
Teams at the Ato Boldon Stadium on Friday
San Juan Jabloteh: 1. Christopher Biggette (GK); 3. Travis Joseph, 4. Nical Stephens, 8. Jason Marcano (11. Kishon Hackshaw 83rd minute), 10. Jomoul Francois (7. Elijah Manners 82nd minute), 15. Dellon Jagessar (27. Jamal Creighton 85th minute), 16. Jamal Spencer, 17. Sean Bonval, 18. Jevon Morris, 19. Joel Lewis, 20. Elton John (Capt.)
Unused substitutes: 30. Shemel Louison (GK); 2. Nicholai Orr, 12. Keron Bethelmy, 13. Kristoff John
Coach: Keith Jeffrey
Club Sando: 1. Stefan Berkley (GK); 5. Trevin Latapy, 6. Kemuel Rivers, 7. Akeem Humphrey, 8. Kevon Piper, 10. Keron Cornwall, 12. Michael Basdeo, 17. Tyrone Charles (25. Aaquil Campbell 73rd minute), 19. Quinn Rodney (9. Shackiel Henry 46th minute), 23. Nicholas Thomas, 27. Jayson Joseph (Capt.) (44. Josiah Trimmingham 73rd minute)
Unused substitutes: 34. Kelvin Henry (GK); 14. Kadeem Gittens, 18. Aaron Kennedy. 21. Derron John
Coach: Angus Eve
Referee: Kwinsi Williams
Assistant Referee 1: Joseph Bertrand
Assistant Referee 2: Caleb Wales
Fourth Official: Annaz Mohammed
Referees’ Assessor: Michael Ragoonath
Match Commissioner: Boris Punch
Defence Force FC: 25. Sheldon Clarke (GK); 5. Jerome Mc Intyre, 6. Rodell Elcock, 8. Brent Sam, 9. Devorn Jorsling, 10. Hashim Arcia (15. Shaquille Bertrand 72nd minute), 12. Jemel Sebro (13. Marvin Jones 64th minute), 20. Levi Serries (32. Jameel Cooper 58th minute), 21. Aklie Edwards, 45. Dylon King, 99. Jerwyn Balthazar (Capt.)
Unused substitutes: 1. Andre Marchan (GK); 4. Dave Long, 18. Reon Moore, 19. Thurlani George
Coach: Marvin Gordon.
W Connection: 18. Julani Archibald (GK), 2. Kurt Frederick, 3. Gerard Williams (Capt.), 5. Triston Hodge, 6. Kevon Goddard, 7. Jomal Williams, 9. Kadeem Corbin (27. Kierron Mason 68th minute), 11. Adan Noel (20. Daniel Diaz 80th minute), 19. Briel Thomas, 26. Isaiah Garcia, 99. Marcus Joseph
Unused substitutes: 33. Jason Belfon (GK); 8. Jameel Antoine, 13. Caleb Sturge, 15. Otev Lawrence, 23. Kennedy Hinkson
Coach: Stuart Charles-Fevrier
Referee: Marlon Peruse
Assistant Referee 1: Ainsley Rochard
Assistant Referee 2: Anton Gill
Fourth Official: Dave Daniel
Referees’ Assessor: Julien Drayton
Match Commissioner: Wayne Caesar
Pro League 2018 standings
Round One Match Day Four
# Team MP W D L GF GA GD Pts
1 W Connection 5 5 0 0 17 2 15 15
2 San Juan Jabloteh 5 4 1 0 7 1 6 13
3 Defence Force FC 4 2 1 1 16 6 10 7
4 Club Sando 5 2 1 2 4 5 -1 7
5 Central FC 4 1 1 2 4 10 -6 4
6 St. Ann’s Rangers 3 1 0 2 1 13 -12 3
7 Point Fortin Civic 4 0 2 2 2 4 -2 2
8 Morvant Caledonia Utd 2 0 1 1 5 6 -1 1
9 North East Stars 3 0 1 2 1 4 -3 1
10 Police FC 3 0 0 3 2 8 -6 0