Sunset FC beats Brac FC, stays in premier league

Sunset players celebrate their fourth goal of the night.

Sunset FC will remain in the Cayman Premier League for the 2017/18 season after winning the CIFA Playoff last Saturday, 3 June.

The game under the lights at the Annex featured Sunset FC, which finished seventh in the premier league, versus Cayman Brac FC, which ended the season second in the CIFA First Division.

The players had hardly worked up a sweat when Gavin Reynolds got in behind the Cayman Brac defence, pulled the goalkeeper out of position and tapped the ball into the net to give Sunset a 1-0 lead, which they would never surrender.

Cayman Brac had its chances but struggled to penetrate the Sunset defence and when they did, finding the target proved problematic.

Sunset captain Tom Chipchase

As the half neared, Paul Young streaked up-field, weaved between defenders and drilled his shot low and to the right of Devaughn Carter and into the back of the Brac net to double Sunset’s lead in the 43rd minute.

There was a decent chance to pull one back for the boys from the sister island in the 47th but Ebo Eccleston’s shot was tipped over the crossbar by Sunset netminder Lee Parry. That would be as close as it would be for any sort of a comeback. Captain Tom Chipchase fired one home in the 54th to make it 3-0 and the game was all but over.

Sunset controlled the ball in dominating fashion, and while they’ve not been among the Cayman Premier League’s best this season, their steady play showed the gulf that can exist between top-flight teams and those in the division below.

Chipchase played the role of creator when he connected with Darien Montague for the finish in the 85th minute. In the second minute of stoppage time, a fifth goal when Young scored his second and, like his singing namesake, left Brac FC feeling like he took a part of them with him as he went away from the field.

“I think 5-nil speaks for itself. I think the guys were superb,” said coach Gareth Thacker. “We didn’t know how the Brac were going to play but they were up for it and 5-nil shows that we were up for it and we were the better team.”

Manager Dennis Rowe said the loss of a few players including Ed Crockett and Neil Randell, both to ACL injuries, as well as Casey Berlin impacted the team’s performance but credited the guys for the heart they showed in the face of that adversity.

“During the season, the guys stuck to training, showed up week in-week out, showed what they were capable of and in the last two months of the season we’ve got six or seven wins. You can see by the looks on their faces what it means to them [to avoid relegation],” he said.

George Town SC earned automatic promotion to the Cayman Premier League after winning the CIFA First Division, while Cayman Athletic will be relegated after finishing bottom of the table in the top-flight.

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