Saint Lucia will have two more matches in the Caribbean Football Union’s inaugural Boys Under-15 Championship, after winning their quarterfinal matchup on Wednesday afternoon.
Playing Grenada at the Raoul Illidge Sports Complex in Philipsburg, Sint Maarten, Saint Lucia lined up with Tarick Sonson in goal; Deshawn Roserie, captain Romario Lendor, Toyan Williams and Jadel Harrow in the back four; Dillon Fannis, Bryant Polius, Djal Augustin and Gabriel Biscette in the midfield; and Linus Clovis and Riquelme Sylvester up front.
Within the first five minutes, Saint Lucia was ahead through Sylvester, and inside the first 15 minutes ‘Lucky’ Clovis doubled the advantage. Lucky struck again to make it 3-0, and Polius netted to send Saint Lucia to the halftime up 4-0.
The score remained unchanged in the second half, but Saint Lucia advanced to Friday’s semifinals. Their likely opponent is Curacao, who whipped Anguilla 7-0. With Antigua and Barbuda losing to Group 1 winners Cayman Islands 3-1, and Dominican Republic earning a 5-1 victory over St Vincent and the Grenadines, Saint Lucia are the last team standing from the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States.
Shayne Paul, the team manager, applauded the youngsters, pointing out that for most of them, it was the first time playing on artificial turf, as opposed to grass. All three of the other teams remaining in the tournament go into the semifinals unbeaten. Saint Lucia lost their opening match to Cayman Islands 2-0.
“The team spirit in the camp is fantastic,” said Shayne. “The kids are really, really motivated, and everything just seems to be going our way. They are working hard, maintaining their calm, and they are playing like professionals. The artificial turf today was a little tough for us, it was the first time for 95% of the team playing on that kind of surface. But the guys just stuck to the task, they played simple and they are growing in confidence.
On Thursday, the team will have a training session, in preparation for Friday’s match. Win or lose, they will play again on Sunday. Should they win, it will be for the title, but even if they come out second best on Friday, they will still play for third place.