The Trinidad Guardian / Former T&T youth player Dwight Quintero arrived off the bench to score twice on his Defence Force FC debut to complete a 7-2 blowout of MIC-IT St Ann’s Rangers in the first game of Monday’s First Citizens Cup 2018 double-header at Ato Boldon Stadium on Monday night.
The win improved coach Marvin Gordon’s Tetron Boys’ grip at the top of Immortelle Group with six points after two games, three points ahead of Central FC (3 points, 1 game) which it faces on Friday.
Club Sando (1 game) and San Juan Jabloteh (2 games) are with one point each after a keenly contested but 0-0 stalemate the second game of Monday’s doubleheader.
The top two teams at the end of group play advances to the semi-finals on July 13. The final will be contested on July 20.
Jabari Mayers had cancelled out a Dylon King goal to level the bottom-positioned Rangers (0 points, 2 games) in the first half, but not even a wonderful second-half Saleem Henry finish was enough to avoid the Adrian Romain coached-side a heavy defeat on a cold and wet night in Couva.
Justin Garcia, Brent Sam, Devorn Jorsling, and Reon Moore, who ended with a goal and three assists, all hit the back of the Rangers net in the second half before substitute Quintero, a 24-year-old ex-Central, W Connection and North East Stars forward, ensuring a comfortable win with a double separated by Henry’s goal.
It was the sort of performance Gordon had anticipated of his bolstered squad, with the exception of allowing two goals at the back.
“I’m looking forward to more goals (against Rangers) than tonight (against Jabloteh),” Gordon had said after his Tetron Boys trashed the San Juan club 4-0 on June 10. “I took a look at them (Rangers) and I don’t think they have much to offer. I think we should get some more goals against Rangers.”
King took his tally to three goals in the tournament by making up for two early wasted chances when he curled a right-footer beyond Rangers goalkeeper Cleon John on 20 minutes to give Defence Force a 1-0 lead after skipping a challenge from defender Renaldo Alexander, one of five changes made by Romain from his starting line-up in their 2-0 loss to Central on 10 June.
Quintero, who five years ago on Oct. 18, 2013, equalised against Defence Force in the final of the First Citizens Cup for Central FC went on celebrating their maiden trophy, would get to his double on the other end to complete a 7-2 rout when he flicked a wonderfully-worked Sam cross into the back of the Rangers net with seven minutes left.
Defence Force will resume play on Friday against Central in the first game of another double-header at Ato Boldon Stadium from 6.30 pm before Police FC and W Connection battle each other in a top-of-the-table Abercrombie Group clash from 8.30 pm.
FIRST CITIZENS CUP RESU
Defence Force FC 7 (Dylon King 20′, Justin Garcia 52′, Brent Sam 56′, Devorn Jorsling 59′, Reon Moore 62′, Dwight Quintero 63′, 83′) v MIC-IT St. Ann’s Rangers 2 (Jabari Mayers 38′, Saleem Henry 65′), at Ato Boldon Stadium;
Club Sando 0 v San Juan Jabloteh 0, at Ato Boldon Stadium.
On Saturday W Connection 2 (Kennedy Hinkson 25′, Marcus Joseph 83′) v North East Stars 0, at Ato Boldon Stadium; Morvant Caledonia United 1 (Kareem Joseph 90’+3 pen.) v Point Fortin Civic 2 (Judah Garcia 66′, Justin Sadoo 75′), 6 pm at Ato Boldon Stadium.