Football: Barclays league division one-The Lions hold St Michel to 1-1 draw


Bottom club The Lions are desperate for points and stunned their more illustrious opponents in the first minute of play as Carlos Mondon pounced on a defensive error to race clear. The St Michel defence hesitated awaiting an offside decision that did not come, by which time the young midfielder had struck the ball past goalkeeper Nelson Sopha for a shocking 1-0 lead for the Cascade-based team.

The Lions had their backs to the wall though after their opener as St Michel poured forward to try to redress the balance.

In the 11th minute, Alex Nibourette raced forward to put in a decent cross which Leeroy Corallie missed and Wilnes Brutus should have tucked home from two metres out, but he fired wide.

St Michel continued to push The Lions on the defensive and in the 14th minute, Allen Larue saw his cross-cum-shot graze the crossbar before the danger was cleared.

Two minutes later, Gervais Waye-Hive exploited space to filter a cross which reached Brutus but goalkeeper Jerome Dingwall produced a wonder save to deny him from point-blank range.

Former St Michel goalkeeper Dingwall again kept the reigning league champions at bay in the 19th minute after Nibourette’s cross was only cleared to Corallie who smacked a sweet volley and he was equal to the task.

It looked as if it was going to be one of those frustrating afternoons for St Michel when Dingwall somehow blocked Nelson Laurence’s header with his legs in the 42nd minute after Samuel Henriette had picked him out in a packed penalty area.
On the stroke of half-time, The Lions goalkeeper showed great reflex with a flying save to push into corner St Michel’s Malagasy captain Jimmy Radafison’s fierce long range effort.

In the second period, St Michel were relentless in attack and in the 46th minute, Corallie cut inside two defenders to shoot at goal but the ball flew agonisingly wide.

Just past he hour mark, Dingwall again frustrated St Michel as Waye-Hive’s cross was deflected and appeared to be dropping in goal but he flipped backwards to pluck the ball into safety.

In the 64th minute, St Michel finally broke The Lions’ resistance as Don Anacoura released Waye-Hive whose low shot was deflected into corner. From Waye-Hive’s resultant corner floated at the far post, Brutus rose higher to head into the net to make it 1-1 and save his blushes.

St Michel were now looking to claim their first league win over The Lions this season and in the 76th minute Waye-Hive’s cross created mayhem in their opponents’ penalty box but still the ball failed to roll in .

In the 80th minute, Waye-Hive showed good pace to leave a couple of defenders in his wake and his cut-back fell to Brutus who rifled his shot wide with the goal at his mercy.

St Michel’s last chance came in the 84th minute from a quickly taken free-kick by Laurence to Waye-Hive whose thumping shot was charged down by Dingwall to help his team gain a vital point in their battle against relegation.

R. J-L.

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