Fruta Conquerors fell agonizingly short of qualifying for the Guyana Football Federation (GFF) Premier League after crushing Pele 4-1 on Sunday in the final fixture of the Georgetown Playoffs at the Tucville Community Centre ground.
Dwayne Lawrence netted a hat trick in the 44th, 62nd and 80th minutes while Eon Alleyne found the back of
the net in the 87th minute. On target for the losers was Royston Dublin in the 76th minute.
With BK Western Tigers and Riddim Squad already through as the number one and two teams, Conquerors needed to win by four goals to prevent Santos FC from claiming the final qualification berth. The Tucville side opened the scoring just before halftime after a profligate finishing display in the final third.
Attacking the goal from the right side of the six yard area, Lawrence cheekily flicked on his right footed effort after collecting a short pass from the right side of the field.
Needing a further three goals to qualify, the wasteful showing in front of the uprights continued for the men in orange. The Tucville giants almost conceded upon the resumption of the second period as Pele was awarded a penalty kick for a rash challenge inside the area.
Stepping up to take the resulting spot kick, captain Shemroy Arthur would be denied as his powerfully struck right footed effort crashed onto the crossbar much to the delight of the Tucville faithful. Conquerors quickly responded as Lawrence, after latching onto a Jermaine Junior defence splitting through pass from the left wing easily finished down the middle of the goal to pull the target to within two. However, substitute striker Dublin would score what would prove to be a crucial goal against the Conquerors unit as he simply placed his right footed strike from within the six yard into the bottom of the net after receiving a right sided cross.
Tucville would quickly answer back four minutes later as Lawrence completed his hat trick through a solo and finish from just outside the 18 yard area to setup what would prove to a nerve wracking final 10 minutes.
Alleyne would make his presence finally felt, cutting the deficit to one with a well placed right footed effort across the body of the goalkeeper to the lower left hand corner to spark wild celebrations in the stands.
With only one goal required and three minutes on the clock, Conquerors began to push everyone forward in desperate pursuit of that ‘golden goal’.
Their efforts however would be thwarted as the official sounded the dreaded final whistle to end a fixture that was a crushing win but in the end a rather disappointing outcome.
In the opening game, BK Western Tigers and Santos FC played to a 1-1 draw. Solomon Austin opened the scoring for the West Ruimveldt side in the ninth minute. Lerone Charles levelled the score in the 34th minute for Santos, sealing what would eventually be a crucial point.