Reggae Girlz drub Cuba 12-1
T op striker Khadija ‘Bunny’ Shaw and head coach Hue Menzies were absent but the Jamaica Reggae Girlz still made light work of Cuba in their opening Group B Concacaf first-round Olympic qualifier at the National Stadium last night. The Girlz dismissed their regional neighbours 12-1 with Cheyna Matthews leading the way with four goals, Tiffany Cameron also netted a brace for the host.
Assistant coach Lorne Donaldson said with the majority of the players only arriving on Sunday, their main focus was to get the win and avoid injuries.
“We expected victory. We worked hard in the first 25 minutes and that put the game out of reach, so after that we just relaxed,” he said.
“Our job as coaches is to manage these players as we had players coming from Europe on Sunday night, so we told them to relax because we wanted to avoid injuries,” he added. Jamaica went ahead from as early as the third minute, when Daneisha Blackwood converted from the penalty spot.
Minutes later Trudi Carter broke away and fired past the Cuban custodian to put the hosts 2-0 up.
Matthews got her first when she broke through and rounded the goalkeeper before slotting home after 20 minutes. Eleven minutes later she added her second and Jamaica’s fourth when she fired home from 12 yards. Cameron rounded off an impressive first-half when she turned home a cross from six yards out.
Eight minutes into the second half Cameron added her second to push the score to 6-0.
But Cuba got a surprising goal two minutes later when Yoana Calderon Gonzalez beat goalkeeper ChrisAnn Chambers with a weak shot at her near post.
Matthews sealed her hat-trick in the 63rd minute following some very unselfish play from her teammates inside the area to make it 7-1 and the Washington Spirit attacker continued her rampage in the 69th minute, easily slotting past the goalkeeper to make it 8-1. Reilly Patterson made it 9-1 in the 72nd and Torania Clarke made it 10-1 with a crisp low strike from the edge of the box in the 78th.
An own goal from Yarisleidy Mena Novo made it 11-1, before Dominique Bond Flasza sealed the 12-1 win with a spectacular strike from 25 yards.