Prospect champs in thriller

The Primary school football season finished with a flourish on Saturday with another set of great games.

The 2010/11 CUC Primary Football League concluded with four mesmerising finals and two heart-stopping third place games. By the end of Saturday’s play, four schools walked away with the coveted titles.

In the feature game at the TE McField Annex, Prospect Primary defeated defending champions St. Ignatius Prep in the Under-11 Champions Cup final in what was truly a classic encounter.

With the crowd packing the sidelines, both teams put on a dazzling display of exhilarating football filled with great passes, resolute defending, wonderful saves and memorable goals.

With a majority of play taking place in the midfield area, Prospect Primary’s Rico Bodden broke the deadlock with an opportunist’s goal. St. Ignatius responded quickly as speedster Kray Foster looped one over the Prospect Primary goalkeeper just before the half-time whistle.

The second half began at a frenetic pace with each team probing and searching, looking for that one opportunity that could settle the game. Foster was again the hero as he drove through the Prospect Primary defence before powering his shot into the left hand corner. Euphoria for the St. Ignatius spectators as parents, teachers, students and even the headmaster himself engulfed the youngster and his team mates in a mass celebration never before seen at this level.

With order restored, Prospect Primary had enough time to respond and respond they did. With the precious minutes ticking away, Ajani Harris levelled the score with a well-taken goal. Not to be outdone by the opposing support, it was time for the Prospect Primary contingent to celebrate.

With overtime looming, both teams were not about to take any chances. At two apiece, overtime was inevitable. The extra 20 minutes came and went with neither team able to take command of the game and it would be the dreaded penalties that would settle this encounter. Ah, the dreaded penalties – great for the winners, dejection for the losers. But this was the only method of deciding the outcome.

The first two penalties were nail-biters as both teams found the net. It was time for the third and final penalty – the precursor to sudden death.

St. Ignatius’ third kick was dramatically saved and Prospect’s third kicker made sure of his effort with the ball kissing the inside of the post. The ball had not even come to a halt before mass hysteria erupted and Prospect’s players were surrounded by their jubilant supporters.

In the Under-11 Champions Cup third-place game, George Town Primary needed overtime to beat Red Bay Primary 1-0 with a wonder-goal from D’Andre Rowe.

The Under-11 Consolation Cup final saw Cayman International School defeat Truth For Youth 1-0 thanks to a Sean Guitard strike. In other games, Cayman Prep were unstoppable in the Under-9 Champions Cup final defeating defending champions St. Ignatius Prep 3-0 thanks to a terrific free kick from Aaron Jarvis and a goal each from Jonah Narborough and Bobby Lomax.

Cayman Prep capped a perfect season, winning all six playoff games and dropping only two points with one draw during the regular season.

Sir John A. Cumber finished third in the Under-9 Champions Cup defeating George Town Primary 2-0 in overtime with goals from Alexander Clarke and the outstanding Barry-Dre Tibbetts.

In the Under-9 Consolation Cup Final, Red Bay Primary’s Lex Dobson scored twice as his side defeated Grace Christian Academy 3-0. Red Bay’s brave Under-9s also went undefeated in the Playoffs, scoring 19 goals and conceding none on their way to lifting the trophy.

CUC organiser Neil Murray said: “Special thanks to Mark Scotland (the sports minister) and Lennie Hew, a founder of the ‘Pee Wee League’, as it was known for quite a few years, who assisted with the trophy presentations following the games.

“Special thanks also to Gary Whittaker, Dwayne Ebanks and Emmanuel Brown for officiating throughout the day and to Ronnie Roach and Harcourt Wason for organising yet another successful PFL season.

“The PFL Committee is indebted to the contributing sponsors – Progressive Distributors and Le Bleu – for providing much-needed Gatorade and water to schools throughout the season, and to Hydes and Sons for donating the new goal posts used during the 2010/2011 PFL Playoffs.

“Finally, thanks to all the players, coaches, assistant coaches, teachers and supporters who make the CUC Primary Football League the truly powerful game. We’ll see you on the field next season.”