Lady Jags top group with 6-1 drubbing of Suriname

Suriname goalkeeper Nathalie Benjamine (red) punches the ball clear during a cornerkick against Guyana in their group-E clash in the CONCACAF Women’s Qualifiers at the National Track and Field Center, Leonora last evening. (Orlando Charles photo)

Guyana climbed atop group-E in the CONCACAF Women’s Qualifiers, crushing traditional foe Suriname 6-1 yesterday at the National Track and Field Centre, Leonora.

It was a record setting victory for the Guyanese, who maintained their unbeaten record against the Dutch nation, eclipsing their best 2-0 margin of victory.

However, the fourth ever meeting of the nations can be described as a game of two halves. For the opening 38 minutes, Suriname was the better team, monopolizing possession and carving out several chances.

Golden Girls-Guyana’s goalscorers from left to right, Brianne Desa, Tiandi Smith, Sydney Cummings, Caliagh Copeland and Brittany Persaud. (Orlando Charles photo)

Xaviera Somowidjojo was a standout player for the Dutch during this period. Despite being the smallest player on the field, the combative centre-half commanded the backline with aplomb and denied Guyana on several instances.

Suriname eventually took the deserved lead under fortuitous circumstances in the 38th minute through Sabrina Rigters.

Poor goalkeeping was at fault for the concession, as a tame shot from 27 yards out in the center of the field, trickled past the goalkeeper, who reacted poorly.

The goal silenced the small crowd that descended on the venue. Similar to their first match with Bermuda, Guyana responded immediately to level proceedings, as Brittney Persaud scored in the 40th minute.

The burly Persaud uncorked a curling free-kick from just outside the right of the penalty box into the right corner.

Mariam El-Masri (no.10) of Guyana seen tussling with Stephany Hanenberg of Suriname at the National Track and Field Center, Leonora in the CONCACAF Women’s Qualifiers last evening. (Orlando Charles photo)

Left winger Brianne Desa then handed Guyana the lead in the 45th minute, lashing a powerful strike into the roof of the net, after a botched clearance following a left side cross, fell into her path.

The Dutch nation simply fell apart mentally and physically in the second half. Their defending was evident of a shell-shocked unit, as they conceded three goals in the space of nine minutes.

Caliagh Copeland made it 3-1 in the 58th minute, with a header into the left corner, after a left side cross from Desa was deflected into her path.

Sydney Cummings got into the scoring act in the 65th minute, bundling the ball into left corner following a goalmouth scramble.

The blitz was completed two minutes onward, as Persaud recorded a double, slotting a left foot shot into the back of the net, after a missed headed clearance by a defender fell in her path.

The scoreline could have easily ballooned further in the final moments, as the home side was guilty of wasting several opportunities.

Local lass Tiandi Smith capped off the win in the 88th minute, racing onto a lobbed pass before finishing past the advancing goalkeeper inside the center of the box.

With the win, the Lady Jaguars move onto four points and secure the top spot over Bermuda due to their superior goal differential.  They will now oppose third placed Barbados in their final fixture tomorrow at the same venue from 19:00hrs.

Suriname, who are without a point, will tackle Bermuda who squeaked past Barbados 3-2 in the earlier fixture.

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