Sports — 19 October 2012
Bandits (North) and Assassins (South) remain Zone leaders at PLB Week 8

With the completion of Week 8 and only 1 more out-of-zone weekend of games remaining in the Premier League of Belize Opening Tournament 2012-2013, defending champions Placencia Assassins remain at the top of the South Zone, and Belmopan Bandits maintain their grip as leaders in the North, both posting victories in another exciting weekend of Premier League football. (See standings below.)

There were 4 Saturday night games this past weekend. At the Isidoro Beaton Stadium in Belmopan, Police United bounced back from an early 1-nil deficit to register a 3-1 victory over visiting FC San Felipe Barcelona. Their winning streak is now 6. Josue Accevedo put San Felipe in front at the 15th minute, but Police responded with goals from Amin August (24 min), Evan Mariano (36 min) and Daniel Jimenez (50 min).

Meanwhile, farther west at the Norman Broaster Stadium in San Ignacio, Zone leaders Belmopan Bandits rode into town and grabbed a 2-1 win over struggling San Ignacio United. Shaking the net for the Bandits were David Trapp (31 min) and Denmark Casey, Jr. (47 min); while Carlos Vasquez got the sole tally for the San Ignacio home squad.

Still farther west, at the Marshalleck Stadium in Benque Viejo, home-standing Verdes FC got a first-half strike from Julian Maldonado (35 min) and they made it stand up for the 1-0 win over visiting F.C. Belize, who have now lost 2 in a row.

The other Saturday night affair was down south at the Michael Ashcroft Stadium in Independence, where home based Paradise/Freedom Fighters led twice, but could not silence the artillery of a determined Belize Defence Force. Freedom Fighters goals came from Leonard Valdez (16 min) and Alexander “Pleck” Peters (45+ min), but each time the army responded, with goals coming from Harrison Tasher (20 min), Luis Mendez (64 min) and Richard Jimenez (82 min), to come away with the 3-2 BDF win.

Both Sunday games were shutouts. Down south at the Placencia Football Field, the defending champions, Placencia Assassins got a goal in each half, from Dellon Torres (34 min) and Collin Westby (50 min), to secure the 2-0 victory over visiting Juventus of Orange Walk.

Here at the MCC Grounds in Belize City, it was R.G. City Boys United delivering a convincing 3-nil win over San Pedro Seadogs, with all goals coming in the first half and involving the dribbling theatrics of rising star Gilroy “Bredda” Thurton, who, though he didn’t score, had a hand in all 3 goals. First to shake the net for City Boys was left midfielder Jason “Paxon” Young (7 min), a left-foot volley from a cross goal lob by Bredda. Super striker Deon McCaulay then converted from the penalty spot (31 min PK) after Bredda was taken down; and Deon struck again (38 min), a right-foot rocket from just outside the eighteen, following another cross goal lob by Bredda from the right side.

There are some big games scheduled for this weekend, notably the long anticipated security forces clash – BDF vs Police United, and two “touches” teams – F.C. Belize vs Placencia Assassins, both on Sunday; but Saturday night’s encounter between favorites Belmopan Bandits and 4th ranked R.G. City Boys United is quite interesting. While the Zone leading Bandits are an acknowledged power-house, they will need to have an answer for the little Bredda, as well as for goleador Deon McCaulay, who has struck twice in consecutive games.

Week 9 schedule:
Saturday, October 20
7:30 p.m. – Belmopan Bandits vs R.G. City Boys United – Isidoro Beaton Stadium
Sunday, October 21
2:30 p.m. – San Pedro Sea Dogs vs San Ignacio United – Ambergris Stadium
3:30 p.m. – FC San Felipe Barcelona vs Paradise/Freedom Fighters – San Felipe Football Field
4:00 p.m. – Belize Defense Force vs Police United FC – Norman Broaster Stadium
4:00 p.m. – F.C. Belize vs Placencia Assassins – MCC Grounds
4:00 p.m. – Juventus vs Verdes FC – Louisiana Football Field

(NOTE: A PLB release today said the starting time on Sunday at Ambergris Stadium has been changed from 3:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. “due to change of time in various travelling outlets (boat and airplane).)

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