Sports — 15 March 2013
BDF on top at Week 5 of PLB Closing Season

Week 6 clash of security forces:
Police vs BDF at MCC

Already Week 5 is history, and the race is hotter than ever in the 2012-2013 Closing Season of the Premier League of Belize, as, for the first time this season, defending champion Belmopan Bandits have been knocked out of their top position in the standings. Belize Defence Force (BDF), who drew twice with 1-1 scores against the Bandits in the Opening Season, handed the Bandits their only defeat a week ago, 2-nil, in this Closing Season, and now trail the Bandits by only 1 point in the aggregate race for the coveted Champions League berth. (See standings at bottom.) No team is undefeated so far in this Closing Season, and all have made their mark in the win column.

Some teams may have been affected more than others in Week 4 and Week 5 games because of the absences of their U-20 National Team players who left on Sunday, March 3, to represent Belize at the Central American Games in Costa Rica. Perhaps, most affected were F.C. Belize (John King, Avian Crawford and Khambrel Blease) and Belmopan Bandits (Denmark Casey, Jr., David Madrid and Edmund Pandy, Jr.), but they should all be back in time for hostilities this weekend.

Only 1 game was played this past Saturday night, March 9, and it was at the Marshalleck Stadium in Benque Viejo, where visiting Police United FC pulled out a 1-nil win over home squad Verdes FC, on a second half goal by Evan Mariano (65’).

On Sunday afternoon, here at the MCC Grounds it was a 0-0 stalemate between the two teams most short-staffed by the C.A. Games, as neither F.C. Belize nor Belmopan Bandits could split the uprights. Meanwhile, out west at the Norman Broaster Stadium in San Ignacio, BDF took a commanding 3-nil lead, before visiting FC San Felipe Barcelona managed a last minute consolation goal. Shaking the net for BDF were Byron Usher (36’), Vallan Symms (69’ PK) and Shane “Chucky” Flores (87’); while San Felipe’s lone tally was by Oscar Acevedo (90’). And down south in Placencia, home standing Placencia Assassins was held to a 1-1 draw by visiting San Ignacio United. Ashley Torres (17’) put the Assassins in front in first half, but Carlos Vasquez (70’) got the second half equalizer for the visitors.

Leading “goaleadors”

Tied for the top goal scorer position at Week 5 of the Closing Season are Paul Nunez (BDF), Jerome “Jarro” James (Belmopan Bandits) and Deris “Colombia” Benavides (FC San Felipe Barcelona) with 3 goals apiece. Eight (8) players have 2 goals each: Norman “Tilliman” Nunez (F.C. Belize), Shane “Chucky” Flores (BDF), David Trapp (Belmopan Bandits), Clifton West (San Felipe Barcelona), Alexander “Pleck” Peters (Placencia Assassins), Evan Mariano (Police United FC), Daniel “Danny” Jimenez (Police United FC), and Leonard Valdez (San Ignacio United FC).

Upcoming Week 6 schedule:
Saturday, March 16
7:30 p.m. – Belmopan Bandits vs Placencia Assassins FC – Isidoro Beaton Stadium
Sunday, March 17
3:30 p.m. – FC San Felipe Barcelona vs Verdes FC – People’s Stadium
3:30 p.m. – San Ignacio United FC vs F.C. Belize – Norman Broaster Stadium
4:00 p.m. – Police United FC vs Belize Defence Force FC – MCC Grounds

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