Sports — 24 December 2015
Leechi strikes again, Police 1-nil over Verdes in PLB finals game 1

BELIZE CITY, Mon. Dec. 21, 2015–Just like he did in game 2 of the semifinals last Sunday against Placencia Assassins at the FFB Stadium, veteran Police United midfielder Orlando “Leechi” Jimenez, himself a former captain of a championship Verdes team, made a halftime entrance into game 1 of the finals against Verdes FC in their home turf at the Norman Broaster Stadium yesterday, and again Leechi delivered the game winning goal, just 5 minutes after action resumed in second half of a hotly contested match. Like the previous Sunday, when his veteran teammate Norman “Tilliman” Pipersburgh/Nunez had lobbed a free kick into that uniquely vulnerable space between the defence line and the goalkeeper, this week it was his brother Danny Jimenez, off a fast run on the right side, who centered perfectly into that soft spot of indecisiveness between defence and goalie, and like a shark smelling blood, Leechi’s accelerating long strides from midfield saw him overtake the bouncing ball and pounce with precision and guile, stroking it past a bewildered Yusef Guerra in goal for Verdes, as dumbstruck Verdes defenders , intent on marking the Police frontline attackers, were one step too slow for the goal scoring instincts of the wily veteran.

Verdes can score, quickly, with proven goal getters like Deon McCaulay and Jarret Davis, and the talented Bredda Thurton is due to find the back of the net, after many close calls following his splendid dribbling. But the Police defence is very stingy, and when they faltered, veteran goalkeeper Jamie Brooks was stellar on Sunday, denying everyone, even Deon McCaulay from the penalty spot at the 75th minute, to protect the 1-nil lead for the Police victory.

Police can’t seem to manufacture goals of late, except when their veteran stars, Orlando “Leechi” Jimenez and the even more veteran Norman “Tilliman” Pipersburgh, are on the pitch. After a scoreless first half, just like last Sunday against Placencia Assassins, Leechi entered the ball game, and five minutes later found a way to score and give his team the victory.

This Sunday in Belmopan, it will be the Grand Finale. Will the Police defence frustrate the Verdes attack again? Can the old veterans pull off a miracle one more time? You got to be at the FFB Stadium this Sunday, December 27, to see it.

Goal – Police – Orlando “Leechi” Jimenez 50’.

Police United FC – #01 Jamie Brooks (goalkeeper), #15 Darien Myers, #18 Frank Lopez, #19 Byron Usher, #12 Trevor “Burger” Lennen (#13 Amin “Tacos” August at 71’), #17 Devon Makin, #11 Byron Chavez (#4 Orlando “Leechi” Jimenez at halftime 45’), #14 Andres Makin, Jr., #16 Danny Jimenez, #8 Carlton “Fubu” Thomas (Norman “Tilliman” Pipersburgh/Nunez at 64’), #10 Harrison “Cafu” Roches. Coach – Hilberto Muschamp.

Verdes FC – #22 Yusef Guerra (goalkeeper), #26 Willian Nascimento, #18 Victor Cruz, #30 Chris Gilharry, #6, Rodney “Shamir” Pacheco, #7 Nahjib Guerra, #10 Jarret Davis, #3 San Mendez (#21 Delroy “Tin Man” Andrews at 66’), #25 Yoras Silva (#8 Ricardo “Cheety” Jimenez at 51’), #24 Gilroy “Bredda” Thurton, #9 Deon McCaulay (#17 Jamil Cano at 76’). Coach – Walter Salazar.

Referee – Irfan Basdemir.

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