Playoff pressure afoot

Since the inception of the WestTel Five-A-Side Football League the opening round of the playoffs has been more of a formality than competition. However this season the teams took to the pitch with thunderous enthusiasm.

The week started off with an unfortunate forfeit by Ocean Frontiers, giving the Brickhouse Devils a free pass to the second round and the opening round started to look like those of seasons past.

However the Gold Conference teams came to life and in the second match-up of the night underdog BDO-Tortuga pulled off the upset of the first round, coming from tenth place to defeat No.7 Old Man United 2-1. BDO-Tortuga goal scorers were Andy Bellfied and Paul Pearman with a goal apiece. Jon Pump scored the lone goal for Old Man United.

The third game of the evening proved to be equally exciting as Gold Conference Esso defeated a strong Maples and Calder squad from the XGen Conference 3-1.

Trent Christie, Chris Thorburn and William Fenton each scored a goal for Esso in the victory while Desmond Harris scored the lone goal for Maples and Calder.

Tuesday night saw the WestTel division one teams make their appearance with both number one seeds RCC Strikers and Burger King exerting their dominance over Dart and UBS respectively.

Atlantic Star, from the XGen Conference came up big against the Transformers in a physical and competitive game.

Kris Maguire earned the player of the game with his two goals for Atlantic while Alan Glasgow scored the team’s third goal. Dominique Pearson, the Transformers leading scorer, put up the team’s only point of the match.

Atlantic Star will go on to face Burger King in the semi-finals. That match-up will feature Rene Carter and Ben Marler going head-to-head yet again.

The two players were part of last season’s race for top goal scorer with Marler coming away with the title. This season may prove to be a bigger challenge for Marler as his Atlantic squad takes the floor against a perfect 13-0 Burger King team.

Wednesday night featured a division one match-up between PWC and Coconut Joes. PWC, of the Gold Conference, scored early in the match and lead for most of regulation.

However in the final minute of the game Chris Ordolis of Coconut equalized and sent the game into overtime.

With less than a minute left of extra time, and on the brink of going to penalty kicks, Coconut again pulled off the clutch goal with Ian Kenyon scoring the winning goal.

From here Coconut Joes move onto the semi-finals against fellow XGen Conference rival number one seed RCC Strikers. The two teams met early in the season, with Antwan Seymour and the Strikers proving to be the dominant squad.

The division two teams also wrapped up their opening round games on Wednesday. McAlpine United convincingly defeated the KPMG Blue Rays while Marriott International FC took down CI Law School 2-0 with Lee Parry and Jose Quintero each scoring in the victory.

The final game of the week saw the KPMG Cat-5 Hurricanes and Old Boys put on a defensive showcase. The Hurricanes overcame the pressure best and won the match 2-1. The KPMG goal scorers were Given Chanetsa-Mazarura and David Fernandes while Bryan Hydes scored the lone goal for Old Boys.

Paramount All-Stars and HSBC, who earned a bye through the first round of the division two playoffs, will take to the pitch in addition to two division one matches that are sure to be entertaining.

The full list of playoff games this week are as follows:

Second Round Playoffs

Wednesday 8 April

7pm – HSBC v. ESSO

8pm – Brickhouse Devils v. Marriott Int. F.C.

9pm – BDO-Tortuga v. McAlpine United

King’s Sports Centre Athletic Director Ray Singh gave his blessings over the competition.

‘On behalf of the WestTel Five-A-Side Football League, good luck to all of our competitors. Fans are encouraged to come out and support the local athletes throughout the playoff tournament. The full playoff breakdown, along with all other King’s Sports Centre sports programme info, is available at www.csa.ky

For all other inquiries, persons are asked to contact Ray at [email protected].

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