Rendezvous and Barbados Defence Force Sports Programme (BDFSP) were the last two teams to secure spots in the quaterfinal round of the Banks Beer- sponsored Barbados Football Association’s Knockout Champions Cup last night.
Playing at the Wildey, St Michael AstroTurf, the soldiers who are also the defending titlists, defeated Ellerton Football Club 3-0 to advance to the last eight. The match was officiated by FIFA referee Adrian Skeete.
Shaquille Stewart netted an early goal in the 22nd minute of play to give his side the lead and the score sheet remained that way until the half-time whistle. Then in the second half Ellerton showed more purpose and stepped up in search of the equalizer. But BDFSP’s top notch defenders Ricardo Morris, a national player, and Kemar Chase, allowed very little to pass their way. And on the rare occasion when Ellerton managed to breach their defensive fortress, goalkeeper Dario Weir was there to make any necessary save.
When the game resumed in the second-half, the BDFSP made further inroads on the under-pressure Ellerton defenders and scored to make it 2-0 in the 48th minute. BDFSP captain Romario Harewood, also a national midfielder, showed his class when he took on Shaquan Clarke and Rinaldo Phillips down the left flank and squared the ball to Raheim Sargeant who nailed it from inside the 18-yard box past Ellerton custodian Jamar Brewster.
Sargeant was in action once again in the 85th minute with a cross to substitute Omani Leacock who had enough room to take a shot and buried it past keeper Brewster.
In the final minute of play Sargeant could have made it 4-0 when the soldiers created another brilliant set piece that found Sargeant once more in the middle and as expected he took a shot that flew just past the top of the goal bars and had Ellerton goalkeeper Brewster scrambling to cover the trajectory of the ball. A few seconds later referee Skeete blew the whistle to end the game.
In the other game played Rendezvous manhandled Bagatelle 6-0 to book their spot. Less than two minutes into the game and Carl Joseph broke through Bagatelle’s defence and almost scored past custodian Mario Albert who left his mark and missed the ball completely. But thanks to good defending from Akeil Payne Rendezvous were unable to score.
Bagatelle then gave Rendezvous the perfect opportunity to take the lead when Shomario Stevenson brought down Emerald George inside the box and conceded a penalty. It was a decision that many thought was a bit too harsh from referee Jamar Springer. Keon Atkins stepped up to take the shot and booted it easily past Bagatelle goalkeeper Albert.
George is very fast down the flanks and he was able to create another goal- scoring opportunity when he made a pass to Romano Snagg inside the 18-yard box and the midfielder coming off of injury nailed it past Albert in the 39th minute.
Dwayne Stanford joined the feast and netted another goal in the 39th minute to make it 3-0 before half time. Then in the second half, Snagg in the 75th, George in the 84th and Carl Joseph in the 90th sealed what was a convincing win for Rendezvous.
Last night’s demise of Ellerton and Bagatelle meant this year’s Champions Cup will have no giant-killing acts from teams from the lower divisions in the business end of the competition.
The quarterfinalists are Rendezvous, Barbados Defence Force Sports Programme, Weymouth Wales, Paradise, Pinelands, Notre Dame, UWI and Brittons Hill.