Despite starting the match with only nine players, Scholars ISC women’s squad managed to hold their opponents scoreless in the first half, pulling out a 1-0 win with a full complement of 11 in the second 45 minutes.

Throughout the first half of the match with Roma Fusion on Sunday at Ed Bush Field in West Bay, several opportunities were squandered by both teams. However, by the second half, Scholars had their full squad of 11, though the team was without available substitutes on the day. Scholars’ Staysy Velasquez Bennett scored the winning goal off an assist 76 minutes into the game.

“We came to the game thinking that we would have our full 11. Unfortunately, we didn’t, but our coaches told us to stay composed and stay defensive,” said Scholars’ team captain Kaela Ebanks. “As the game progressed, we knew players were coming in late so we just had to keep the defence locked until we got those players and … with those players we got the results.”With only three teams playing in the CIFA Women’s League, this circuit is often overlooked, but Ebanks is optimistic that things will improve for women’s football in Cayman.

Scholars’ Kaela Ebanks and Fusion’s Brittany Bodden. Photo: Seaford Russell Jr.

“If I’m being completely honest, it needs to grow. We have three teams, which isn’t very good, because, as you can see, when two are playing, the next is in the stands watching. But in the long run, if we stick to the training and get some money put into the programme, we will get further; the girls are determined,” Ebanks said.”