Another weekend and another goal for Kerry “El Corbeux” Baptiste.
Baptiste, the 32-year-old San Juan Jabloteh captain, decided a drab affair with a close range header off a Rennie Britto cross that helped the “San Juan Kings” to a 1-0 win over St Ann’s Rangers at the Larry Gomes Stadium, Malabar yesterday.
The result saw Jabloteh leapfrog Point Fortin Civic to seventh spot but only by goal difference.
Civic was held goalless by North East Stars yesterday at Mahaica Oval in Point Fortin. It was the Point Fortin club’s first point in six matches after starting the season with three successive victories.
Stars, on the other hand, made the most of the point gained on the road as the Sangre Grande-based team climbed to second place; albeit just one point ahead of Caledonia AIA, Police FC, Central FC and Defence Force.
DIRECTV W Connection is almost out of sight at the top of the Pro League standings with a nine point lead over second placed Stars. But the second place spot, which carries an automatic berth in the 2015 CONCACAF Club Championship qualifying rounds, is within striking distance for seven of the remaining eight teams.
The Jabloteh team, which has 10 points from nine games, is just three points shy of Stars and, once more, it owed much to the predatory instincts of Baptiste.
Baptiste has a League high eight goals so far this season, which is double the mark of his closest challengers, Keyon Edwards, Jamal Gay (both Caledonia), Rundell Winchester (Central), Trevin Caesar (North East Stars), Elijah Belgrave, Clevon McFee (both Police), Joevin Jones (W. Connection) and his Jabloteh teammate, Britto.
El Corbeux’s career tally, according to the Pro League archives, stands at 115 goals, which is the highest in Trinidad and Tobago’s professional era. The only other players credited with over 100 Pro League goals are Defence Force striker Devorn Jorsling (105) and former Joe Public star Arnold Dwarika (103).
San Juan Jabloteh (3-4-2-1): 1.Kevin Dodds (GK); 26.Keino Goodridge, 6.Dario Holmes (22.Shane Hospedales 46), 12.Jamal Spencer; 25.Alfie James, 18.Jevon Morris, 20.Dwane James (19.Dillon Kirton 74), 16.Nyron Jones; 7.Rennie Britto, 21.Neil Mitchell (14.Shaquille Bertrand 66); 10.Kerry Baptiste (captain).
Unused substitutes: 3.Lekion Elie, 9.Jelani Felix, 11.Akel James, 13.Savion Kirton.
Coach: Keith Jeffrey
St Ann’s Rangers (4-1-3-2): 1.Akel Clarke (GK); 21.Jair Edwards (40.Mackesi Quashie 56), 41.Kevin Carter, 33.Isaih McIntyre, 6.Kareem Davidson; 31.Jameel Antoine; 18.Jemel Berot (36.Hakeem Legall 56), 16.Kennedy Isles, 4.Jelani Peters; 14.Michael Yaw Darko (5.Duran Dilworth 70), 26.Josh Toussaint.
Unused substitutes: 22.Christopher Biggette (GK), 30.Rickyl Morris, 32.Joshua Sylvester, 38.Jamil Young.
Coach: Gilbert Bateau
Referee: Crystal Sobers
Pro League results
(Friday January 10)
W Connection 2 (Neil Benjamin 31, Gerard Williams 69 pen), Police FC 1 (Elijah Belgrave 14) at Hasely Crawford Stadium;
Central FC 1 (Jason Marcano 42), Caledonia AIA 1 (Densill Theobald 55 pen) at Hasely Crawford
(Saturday January 11)
San Juan Jabloteh 1 (Kerry Baptiste 52), St Ann’s Rangers 0 at Larry Gomes;
Point Fortin Civic 0, North East Stars 0 at Mahaica Oval.[standings league_id=1 template=extend logo=true]