Cayman Athletic holds off Roma United

It was a competitive affair at the Annex.

Cayman Athletic SC celebrated a 3-1 win over Roma United at the Annex Sunday, 15 October to start their 2017/18 CIFA Premier League off on the right foot.

The first chance came to Athletic in the 7th minute when a corner kick made its way toward goal but bounced off the woodwork and safely back into play. After 20 minutes of play a stunning one-time shot by Almando Forrester from about 20 yards out burned the back of the net to give Cayman Athletic a 1-0 lead. Forrester nearly doubled his tally four minutes later when his left-footed shot was just wide of the mark.

For a moment, Athletic players thought they had another but the assistant referee signaled offside. Just after half-an-hour of play, Roma was granted a free kick just outside the top of the 18-yard box after Zavian Williams was taken down but Athletic keeper Albertini Holness would not be bothered as the direct shot was way high.


Almando Forrester celebrates Cayman Athletic’s opening goal.


Few serious chances were created and the teams would go to the changing room with Athletic holding 1-0 lead and Roma eager to turn things around.

The crowd came to life as Carson Fagan, returning “home” to Athletic after time with Scholars International, blasted one from about 36 yards out three minutes into the second half. It was a chance, a really good chance but the shot hit the cross bar. Fagan likely saying to his teammates that though he may be the “old man” on the pitch, he still has it.

Turning to the bench, on came last season’s top scorer in the U17 Boys League in the form of Rico Bodden, who instantly impressed with his clever footwork and speed. After a give-and-go with Christopher Ebanks in the 66th, 19 minutes after coming on, Bodden did what he came to do and beat Adwen Simpson to double the lead.

Roma picked up the tempo and pressed to not let the game get away from them. Holness was called upon to prove why he’s Cayman Athletic’s first-choice between the pipes and made three saves in successive possessions.


CASC’s Jorronie McLean takes the ball from Roma’s Delano Mitchell (12).


As the game wore on, on came another young forward for Athletic. Cody Ebanks in his Premier League debut was eager to show that at 16, he belongs with the men. Barely working up a sweat five minutes after entering the game, here came his chance with Christopher Ebanks again providing the set-up as Athletic took a 3-0 lead.

“It was fantastic…the ball was played to the wing, he drew a majority of the players to the left side and he crossed it in on the ground and I just tapped it in,” young Cody said, adding that with a taste of scoring he want to do more of that as the season progresses (and stake his claim for a spot when the National U20 Men’s Team roster is trimmed ahead of CFU World Cup Qualifying next summer).

By the time Zavaian Williams scored for Roma in the 79th, fatigue was setting in and opportunities to pull back were getting slimmer. In the end, Cayman Athletic took a 3-1 win and the all-important three points in the league that sees team face each other once for the regular season.

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