The Arima North Secondary football ground is a beautiful, scenic spot down a steep, grassy incline and with the majestic northern range as a backdrop.
But the “Westmoorings Tigers” did not travel up the Arima Old Road to enjoy the view.
Another outing and another three points for St Anthony’s College who was simply too well organised and cohesive a unit for the “Dial Dynamos” and ended as a 2-1 winner.
The result preserved St Anthony’s 100 percent Premier Division record and two point lead over second placed St Mary’s College.
Arima scored first through an impressive long ranged effort from Micah Marshall in the 26th minute. But it only seemed to be a matter of time before St Anthony’s would reply; and two second half goals from left back Simon Joseph and forward Kwesi Allen eventually did the trick for the Tigers.
St Anthony’s played the final 22 minutes with 10 players after captain Mawasi Charles was ejected for his second yellow card. And there was one scare in the 82nd minute when Arima defender Anfernee Johnson headed the ball off an opposing upright from a corner kick.
But, at the final whistle, the north zone team would have been pleased with the result and the performance that went with it.
It seems that St Anthony’s problems this season have been generally self-inflicted.
Charles expulsion, which came after a trip on Arima substitute Darnell Charles, was already the third red card for a Tiger from just four outings this season. It seems only a matter of time before a St Anthony’s player is sent off during the pre-match warm up.
There might be more bad news on the way for coach Nigel Grosvenor as Carapichaima East Secondary is understood to be preparing a protest for St Anthony’s use of a possibly suspended player during their mid-week contest.
Trinidad and Tobago national under-17 midfielder Shakeem Patrick was ejected on September 4 against Trinity College East and skipped the subsequent game against St Benedict’s College before featuring in a 5-0 rout of Carapichaima, three days ago.
The problem is that St Anthony’s match against St Benedict’s never kicked off and was awarded to the Tigers for inadequate field markings by the southern school. Carapichaima, according to a source, is arguing that Patrick did not serve his one-match ban and was ineligible to play when the two schools met on Wednesday.
If St Anthony’s continue to put in performances like today, a three point deduction would probably only be a hiccup.
This was not the “beautiful game” mind you. There is no equivalent to former alumni and ex-England Premier League midfielder Carlos “Rolls Royce” Edwards in this St Anthony’s squad. But there are more than a few Wingroads.
Not great to look at; but they would get you where you want to go.
In front of a small crowd on the Arima Old Road, St Anthony’s started brightly and might have scored twice in the opening 20 minutes but for alert defending by Johnson who flung himself in the way of efforts by Joseph and Adriel Kerr.
And, against the run of play, Arima threatened an upset in the 26th minute with a tremendous strike from Marshal. Charles cut out an attempted threaded pass from Arima midfielder Tevin Garcia only for the ball to drop obligingly for Marshal with St Anthony’s goalkeeper Carlton Alfonso well off his line.
Marshal’s controlled, half volley, from 25 yards, was unstoppable. But it was a rare moment of brilliance from the home team.
St Anthony’s was soon on the front foot again and, despite a solid individual performance from Johnson, Arima’s defence rarely looked convincing. Joseph eventually dispatched the equaliser in the 56th minute after receiving the ball with time and space in the Arima area. And, 10 minutes later, the lively Allen completed the recovery with a simple tap in after a clever squared pass from teammate Darius Olliviera.
Charles was sent off soon after while Johnson almost conjured up an equaliser for Arima in the closing minutes. But the host team was not compact or fluent enough to take advantage of its extra player and could easily have conceded more as St Anthony’s finished as a deserved winner.
Carapichaima is likely to make a case for three points from the Tigers, due to Patrick’s involvement on Wednesday, while St Benedict’s has also vowed to appeal its loss to St Anthony’s.
Eventually, though, someone will have to defeat St Anthony’s on a football ground. And not many schools seem capable of that at the moment.
St Anthony’s College (4-2-3-1): 1.Carlton Alfonso (GK); 2.Jared Flament, 23.Mawasi Charles (captain), 15.Nicholas Moyou, 18.Simon Joseph; 4.Isaiah McIntyre, 12.Matthaeus Granger; 25.Shakeem Patrick, 9.Darius Olliveira (19.Andrew Rullow 83), 11.Adriel Kerr (17.Raheem Borde); 10.Kwesi Allen.
Unused substitutes: 22.Oba Augustin (GK), 3.Shaquille Sandy, 5.Keston Herrera, 6.Leon Whyle, 13.Shem Clauzel.
Coach: Nigel Grosvenor
Arima North Secondary (4-4-1-1): 1.Shundell Mayers (GK) (captain); 3.Matthew La Caille, 6.Hakim Baird, 4.Anfernee Johnson, 13.Joshua Alexander; 7.Bryan Williams (12.Darnell Charles 53), 8.Jesse Chuniesingh (14.Justin Garcia 76), 10.Afton Molino, 18.Tevin Garcia; 11.Micah Marshal; 19.Josiah George (5.Cordell Alfred 84).
Unused substitutes: 24.Naheem Williams (GK), 17.Kaiser Didier, 15.Mulick Mitchell, 2.Clarke Osei.
Coach: John Henry
Referee: Gyasi McDonald
SSFL Premier Division results
(Sat Sep 13)
St Anthony’s College 2 (Simon Joseph 56, Kwesi Allen 66), Arima North 1 (Micah Marshal 25) at Arima;
Shiva Boys HC 4 (Marvin Seuradge 9, 31, 76, Quinn rodeny 53), Carapichaima East 0 at Guaracara Park;
St Augustine 1 (Kishawn Marcellin 69), St Benedict’s College 1 (Moriba Des Cartes 64) at St Augustine;
San Juan North 1 (Brent Sam 22), Trinity College East 2 (Tyriq John 10, 50) at San Juan;
Naparima College 2 (Trent Paul 27, Amrit Jildharry 31), East Mucurapo 1 (Kazim Donald 50) at Lewis Street, San Fernando;
St Mary’s College 2 (Chinua Bernard 4, Sebastien Cabral 85), Chaguanas North 0 at St Mary’s;
Fatima College 0, Presentation (San F’do) 2 (Nate Brooks, Levon Bass) at Fatima;
(Wed Sep 17)
St Anthony’s College v Shiva Boys HC, 3.45 pm, St Anthony’s;
Arima North Secondary v St Augustine, 3.45 pm, Arima;
Carapichaima East v San Juan North, 3.45 pm, Carapichaima;
St Benedict’s v Naparima College, 3.45 pm, La Romaine;
Trinity College East v St Mary’s College, 3.45 pm, Trincity;
East Mucurapo v Fatima College, 3.45 pm, Fatima;
Chaguanas North v Presentation San F’do, 3.45 pm, Chaguanas;