Hundreds of Cool & Smooth Empire fans left Antigua Recreation Grounds (ARG) more than a bit disappointed on Sunday night following their team’s 6-0 loss to leaders Asot’s Arcade Parham in the Digicel OBSERVER Media Group Premier Division football competition.
Thousands turned out to witness the anticipated showdown first-hand and had the thirst for goals quenched as Parham clinically put the Gray’s Farm team to rest in the high-energy fixture.
Contesting the feature match of a triple-header, Empire held their own for the first 40 minutes, but lost their bearings with just two minutes of regulation time left in the first half.
Poor marking at the top of the 18 yards box left midfielder Akeem “Leppy” Thomas unmarked to collect a pass from Peter “Big Pete” Byers before sending a side-footed effort bending towards the far upright and into the back of the net. Thomas’ strike came in minute 43.
Parham added a second during injury time when Kerry “Arab” Skepple waited on a Jamie Thomas cross just inside the six yards box to head into the far eastern end of the southern goal, past goalkeeper Randy Nicholas.
The situation worsened for Empire following the interval when defender Terry Andrew, in only his first match of the season, inadvertently put a cross into the back of his own net in minute 57.
Two minutes later, it was 4-0 when Byers scored from an angle just inside the 18 yards box, while Jamie Thomas headed in number five from deep inside the six in minute 89.
Substitute Tevaughn “Peter Reds” Harriette rounded off his team’s scoring when he put home from close range in the second minute of added time.
The victory lifts Parham to 32 points after 16 matches, while Empire dropped to the number four spot on 24 points after 15 matches.
Meanwhile in the day’s second match, Champion Footwear Greenbay Hoppers had the better of Ting All Saints United by a 3-2 margin as the Greenbay men edged onto 26 points from 15 matches.
Rolston “Lexi” Phoenix, Kelly Frederick and George “Sowa” Dublin scored for Hoppers, while Quinton Griffith and Orlando Peters scored for United.
United now find themselves third from bottom and just two points ahead of FBO 2000 Villa Lions and 10 ahead of bottom-of-the-table A&R Smitty.
In the day’s opening contest, LIME Old Road recorded a 2-0 victory over Villa Lions as they jumped into the number two spot with 26 points from 15 fixtures.
Jevon Francis and Teran Williams scored for Old Road in minutes 50 and 60, respectively. Villa remain second from the cellar with 16 points after 16 matches.
The competition continues tomorrow when Sap play Hoppers at 5 pm and Empire play Old Road at 7 pm.