After two hours of football Wednesday (2 December) night, the quarterfinal game between Latinos and Scholars needed a penalty shootout to decide who would move on in the Cayman Islands Football Association President’s Cup tournament.
Latinos goalkeeper Carlos Alberto Escobar Flores kept the opposition out of his net; saving two of three (third shot missed) shots by Scholars during the penalty shootout and even scoring one of his own.
“We fought for this,” Latinos’ Chairman Saulo Castro told Cay 03 Sports after the game. “Latinos have the fight in them and we will continue to fight for the league as well but tonight was a special game.”
Three nights prior to their encounter, Scholars defeated Latinos 0-3 in the league and it was evident that Latinos was not going to allow a repeat. While the two teams ultimately went to penalties; the game left fans on the edge of their seats several times.
Scholars striker Jonah Ebanks came close to scoring 12 minutes into the game but thanks to the goalpost, the game remained 0-0. Ebanks was later subbed off due to injury.
Scholars came close to scoring again when Rodrick Pearson received a visionary pass from Jamal Seymour in the box that led to a disappointing miscue in 51st minute.
When it came down to the shootout, Escobar Flores was the first man up to take the shot which he executed to bring Latinos up 1-0. Scholars’ Gawayne Speed was denied by Escobar Flores on his attempt.
Latinos’ captain Jarol Smith stepped up next and made good on his penalty shot. It was then Scholars’ Hermon Gardner turn at goal but his team was denied yet again by Escobar Flores.
Latinos’ striker Christopher Reeves scored what would be his team’s final goal during the shootout. Scholars’ Edroy Williams stepped up and put his shot wide to give Latinos a clean-sweep 3-0 victory.
Latinos won the Presidents Cup last season after defeating Scholars 2-1 in the finals and Castro said he is looking to lift the trophy for the second season straight after eliminating the favourites.
“It’s tough right now but we’re still fighting for the league and I know Scholars is doing very good, but I said let’s just concentrate on the FA Cup and the Presidents cup.”
In other CIFA President’s Cup quarterfinal matches
After being down 4-2 at the end of the first half against Academy, George Town scored three times in second half to comeback and win 4-5 Tuesday (1 December) night at the Annex.
“Obviously it started rough but the good thing about it is we were getting chances and decided to stick to the game plan,” said George Town assistant coach Ian Lindo. “After making a few changes in the second half we came out and executed and got the victory.”
Bodden Town FC defeated Sunset 4-1 during their encounter Wednesday night at the Ed Bush Stadium to advance in the President’s Cup. The game between Elite and Future was called off due to heavy rain.
CIFA President Alfredo Whittaker suggested on Thursday evening that the game between Elite and Future will happen on the 9th of December.
CIFA President’s Cup quarterfinals results
|Scholars ISC||0 (P-0)||Latinos FC||0 (P-3|
|Bodden TownFC||4||Sunset FC||1|
|Academy SC||4||George Town FC||5|