Reigning Premier League champions Barbados Defence Force Sports Programme (BDFSP) had a good run tonight, but it wasn’t enough to keep last year’s Capelli SuperCup runners up Ellerton at bay.
The two top-flight teams ended their 94-minute game 3-3.
BDFSP were out hot and heavy, showing their skill and speed, drawing first blood in the 15th minute, with a superb finish off the boots of Akeem Hill. Eleven minutes later, Omani Leacock bent his ball up and over the wall into the back of the net, after the soldiers were awarded a free-kick.
While Ellerton continued to probe and search, the BDFSP continued to dispossess and double team Captain Shakille Belle much to his frustration. But two minutes after the half-hour mark, Shaquan Clarke pulled one back for Ellerton at the back post after goalie Kishmar Primus was unable to stop the ball.
The soldiers would have none of it and T’Shane “Bullet” Lorde curled the ball into the back of the net a mere three minutes later to put his side up. As the teams continued tit for tat, Clarke secured his brace two minutes later, following a clinical error by the BDFSP.
Moments before referee Rudy Arthur signaled the end of the first half, Belle slotted the ball to the left of Primus to find the equalizer.
In the second half, while both teams created excellent chances, they both failed to capitalize on them and parted as equals at the end of the game.
In the opening encounter, Paradise thwarted the St Andrew Lions 4-1, sending them back to their base cowering in the corner.
With many changes on their side in Mario Harte, Tito Beckles and the addition of two Trinidadians forward Shakiel Henry and defender Dwight Pope, the St Andrew side was no match for the Yellow Submarines.
Captain Armando “Sugar” Lashley was first out the blocks when he pocketed for his side as early as the seventh minute, while Henry secured his first goal in the 39th minute before Lashley came back to register his brace off a cross from Harte four minutes later.
Even with the inclusion of Vincentian Emerald “Monkey” George and former Wales’ prolific forward Arantees Lawrence, they were unable to pull one back.
Similar to the second game, moments before the whistle was blown to signal the end of half time, Henry tapped the ball home to secure his brace in his debut match.
In the second half, the Lions came back rejuvenated, but Shakir Skeete’s shot on target whistled past the far post, denying the Lions another goal. However, Chapman secured a consolation goal from distance in the 64th minute, just outside the 18-yard box, to leave Paradise’s goalkeeper Jason Boxhill flat on his face and give his team a consolation goal.
Meanwhile, in the nightcap game, last year’s Capelli SuperCup and Knock-Out Champions Weymouth Wales sent the UWI Blackbirds home with a 1-0 loss.
Operating under a new Head Coach in Renaldo “Pee Wee” Gilkes and with squad changes in Liam Brathwaite, Chai Lloyd and Mario Williams, UWI’s youthful team was no match for Wales’ experience.
In the seventh minute, Shaquille Stewart caught the ball after it was switched from Williams and Ray Snaggs on the right, before finishing exquisitely to leaves UWI’s keeper and newcomer Shaquon Phillips flat on his face.
And while the game continued without any more goals, two major chances were not taken advantage of by UWI’s Niall Reid-Stephen. He missed his mark in the 88th minute when his shot on target, from distance, slid past the far post, and he failed to convert a penalty in the fading minute of the game.