PERENNIAL giants Defence Force showed signs of rounding into Craven A Professional Football League championship form yesterday evening at the Hasely Crawford Stadium.
The Army/Coast Guard combination unit kept the pressure on current leaders W Connection by schooling central outfit Doc's Khelwalaas on the way to an impressive 5-0 victory.
Victory not only helped Army skipper Hutson Charles's unit erase the memory of their 2-1 defeat to W Connection just four days prior but, more importantly, allowed them to close the gap on the southerners atop the eight-team table.
Connection (18 pts), the only unbeaten team in the league, now hold a three point advantage over the Army but have a game in hand. Khelwalaas (9 pts) remained in fourth place.
In a rescheduled sixth-round game yesterday, CL Financial San Juan Jabloteh registered only their second win of the series, shutting out cellar-placed Futgof 2-0.
Full points only lifted the San Juan-based unit to fifth place on the table with eight points though.
At the Stadium: Young Army midfielder Carlos Edwards is certainly coming of age. Now in his third season in the "big leagues" and, on a day when his side certainly needed a morale boosting win, he did not flatter to deceive scoring twice and setting up another for skipper Hutson Charles.
Edwards took over following a fairly even first half, in which a Khelwalaas
defensive blunder provided Army striker Errol Mc Farlane with a lone goal
to break the deadlock at the interval.
Edwards first struck in the 60th minute against the run of play after Khelwalaas had managed the pressure the Army defence in the opening period of the final half.
Collecting a quickly taken right-side free kick from a teammate, Edwards
mesmerised Khelwalaas defenders Louis Johnson and Wendell Harrington with
some fancy footwork on the edge of the penalty area before beating goalie
Kevin Placide at his far post with a powerfully struck right-footer.
His second goal 12 minutes later was also a crisply struck right-footer past Placide's right hand from just inside the penalty which gave the Army a 3-0 cushion.
Seven minutes later Edwards turned provider when he made a swift counter-attack up the right flank and crossed into the six metre box where a free Charles slotted past Placide.
Then, with the Khelwalaas defence in tatters, Army substitute Jason Scotland helped himself to an 88th minute goal.
At the CoE: After a scoreless first half, Jabloteh midfielder Otis Seaton broke the deadlock with a right-footed drive from 25 metres out.
Hector Sam sealed the deal two minutes from time by rounding Futgof keeper Brian James and slotting home after running on to a through ball from Marvin Faustin.
Defence Force 5 (Carlos Edwards 2, Errol McFarlane, Hutson Charles, Jason Scotland) v Khelwalaas 0
CLF San Juan Jabloteh 2 (Otis Seaton 61st 25 metres out, Hector Sam 88th through ball from Faustin dribble around the keeper) v Futgof 0