St. Lucian defender Frederick a hat-trick hero in Connection 7-0 rout over Rangers

St. Lucian defender FrederickDIRECTV W Connection topped Round One Match Day One of the Digicel Pro League 2013-14 season in style by overpowering St. Ann’s Rangers in a one-sided 7-0 affair at the Hasely Crawford Stadium.

Connection’s St. Lucian left-back Kurt Frederick was the star of Saturday night, netting a superb second half hat-trick against an everything-gone-terribly-wrong Rangers.

The more than comfortably victory took Connection to the top of the standings with the obviously better goal-difference, ahead of Point Fortin Civic which defeated Police FC 4-1, and Central FC which defeated defending champions Defence Force on Friday night at the Ato Boldon Stadium.

Brazilian midfielder Celio Da Silva Santos opened the scoring for the recently crowned two-time consecutive Digicel Charity Shield winners in the 16th minute for a 1-0 advantage by guiding in a deflected Stefano Rijssel corner past goalkeeper Akel Clarke.

Clarke conceded again in the 34th minute, when Rijssel doubled the Connection advantage, 2-0, with the first of his two goals on the night.

The Surinamese forward had a simple tap in against a hapless Clarke from a squared pass by teammate Jerrel Britto.

Clarke who made a save denying Hashim Arcia in the 13th minute, and watched a Joevin Jones strike fly over-bar in the 39th minute was replaced at the break by debuting Rangers’ coach Gilbert Bateau, father of Trinidad and Tobago and Belgium-based defender Sheldon Bateau.

However the introduction goalkeeper Kern Caesar didn’t solve Rangers’ problems. In fact, it was worse following the break. Even former Connection players Kerron Cummings and Jelani Grosvenor couldn’t save the St. Ann’s club the embarrassment.

Cummings had an attempt gloved behind by goalkeeper Alejandro Figueroa on the hour mark and in the 74th minute the ex-Central FC midfielder struck wide from distance.

It was in the 65th minute that Rangers suffered the first of Frederick’s three items.

The St. Lucian latched onto a long cross inside the area by substitute Neil Benjamin Jr. and blasted a low strike through the legs of goalkeeper Caesar for a 3-0 score.

Rijssel then completed his double by the 69th minute, lifting the score-line 4-0, from inside the area thanks to Benjamin’s involvement on the right.

Another Connection second half introduction Jomal Williams joined in on the fun, slamming home his team’s 5th item in the 75th minute after collection a Benjamin cross.

Team captain and T&T player, Jones, was denied his place on the score-sheet in the 77th minute, after hitting the crossbar to Caesar’s relief.

But ten minutes from time Rangers lost the substitute goalkeeper to a direct red card after pulling down goal-bound Benjamin outside the area.

Rangers’ left-back Caleb Sturge was tucked between the uprights and did commendably well despite conceding a pair of goals as Connection enjoyed the comfortable 7-0 win.

During the play from the resulting free-kick, in the 81st minute, which Sturge made a diving save to deny Jones, the ball was only cleared as far Frederick at the top of the area, and the Connection left-back rifled a low strike just inside the upright. Even a specialist goalie would have had little or no chance against the strike.

Frederick then sealed his hat-trick in the 84th minute by heading past Sturge from a well-placed Jomal Williams chip over the Rangers’ defense.

But Sturge would have left the field a bit of a hero on the night after pulling off two added-on time saves against a Jomal Williams strike and a Benjamin blast.

St. Ann’s Rangers 0—7 W Connection
Celio Da Silva Santos 16’, Stefano Rijssel 34’, 69’, Kurt Frederick 65’, 81’, 84’, Jomal Williams 75’

St. Ann’s Rangers—1. Akel Clarke(G)(22. Kern Caesar(G) 46th minute)(Red Card), 7. Clevon Mc Fee(C), 8. Joel Whiteman, 9. Conrad Smith(27. Jelani Grosvenor 46th minute), 10. Keron Cummings, 11. Jumol Harewood(14. Michael Yaw Darko 55th minute), 13. Caleb Sturge, 19. Akim Ash, 20. Qian Grosvenor, 23. Dwane James, 30. Akel De Freitas

Unused substitutes—2. Marcus Roberts, 4. Jelani Peters, 5. Duran Dilworth, 16. Kennedy Isles

Coach—Gilbert Bateau

W Connection—21. Alejandro Figueroa(G), 10. Joevin Jones(C), 2. Kurt Frederick, 3. Gerard Williams, 4. Daneil Cyrus, 6. Celio Da Silva Santos(28. Yhon Stiven Lopez 71st minute), 14. Hashim Arcia(40. Jomal Williams 60th minute), 19. Leslie Russell, 24. Joao Ananias Jordao Jr, 26. Stefano Rijssell, Jerrel Britto(Neil Benjamin Jr.55th minute)

Unused substitutes—18. Julani Archibald, 7. Silvio Spann, 25. Christian Viveros, 39. Alvin Jones

Coach—Stuart Charles Fevrier