NEW YORK, Mar 12, CMC – Jamaica-born Guam international, Shane Malcolm, netted a hat-trick while Reggae Boy Deshorn Brown struck twice, to lead a Caribbean scoring spree, on the opening weekend of the United Soccer League.
Playing at the Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California, the 27-year-old Malcolm scored once in the first half and added a brace in the second, as his Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC thrashed LA Galaxy II, 4-1.
He opened the scoring in the 10th minute when he nodded in at the near post, after Mike Seth had also headed Alexander Molano’s corner across the face of goal.
Malcolm added a second three minutes into the second half with a composed finish past advancing goalkeeper Justin vom Steeg before rounding off his scoring in the 76th minute, when he tapped in from close range following Molano’s squared pass from the touchline.
In El Paso, Texas, Brown covered himself in glory as he fired OKC Energy FC to a 3-1 victory over El Paso Locomotive at Southwest University Park.
The 28-year-old forward struck as early as the first minute when he collected Trinidadian Mekeil Williams’s long ball from midfield, fought off two defenders to slot a left-footed finish past goalkeeper Logan Ketterer.
Derek Gebhard equalised for the hosts to leave the scores level at half-time only for Brown to put OKC ahead again in the 54th minute, latching onto Jamaican Owayne Gordon’s long throw-in to beat Ketterer from the right side of the box.
Trinidadian Cordell Cato secured the points nine minutes from time when he peeled away from his marker just inside the 18-yard box and produced a clinical finish.
At the Greater Nevada Field in Reno, the Jamaican pair of Brian Brown and Michael Seaton both got on the scoresheet as Reno 1868 and FC Orange County battled to a 2-2 stalemate.
Following a goalless first half, Brown got the opener in the 63rd minute for Reno before Lino Mfeka doubled the lead five minutes later. However, Seaton pulled one back for Orange County in the 77th, leaving Aodhan Quinn to snatch the injury-time leveller.
In San Antonio, Jamaican Junior Flemmings scored one and set up another but it was fellow countryman Jason Johnson’s injury time strike which helped Phoenix Rising come from behind to grab a thrilling 3-3 draw against the hosts at Toyota Field.
Flemmings netted in the 22nd minute to cancel out Ever Guzman’s ninth minute strike, and then set up Adam Jahn in the 43rd to lock the scores 2-2 at half-time, after Turks and Caicos Islands’ Billy Forbes had put San Antonio ahead again in the 40th.
A Jahn own goal seemed to have won it for San Antonio until Johnson struck deep in injury-time with a powerful close range header from Jamaican Kevon Lambert’s right-sided cross.