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Home Sports BPFL semifinals end Saturday night ? after that, the Big Dance!

BPFL semifinals end Saturday night ? after that, the Big Dance!



The table may be set and we know who?s going to it, but the playoffs are still rolling on to the finish to make it official. This Saturday night, June 24th, Sagitun has Griga United at home in Independence. A source close to the Sagitun club told Amandala that they will more than likely play their bench in an effort to protect key players from injuries heading into the championship series next week.


Sagitun defeated Griga in the opener of the 2004 playoffs in Dangriga on June 20th,and if Griga should win this game, the only effect would be on home field advantage, because the championship bound teams, Sagitun and Gatorade Juventus, are tied at nine points each.


Last Saturday night in Belmopan, Hilly Muschamp, the Sagitun captain, took everything upon his shoulders and single-handedly took charge of his team in crunch time to come out with a convincing win over the Builders Hardware Bandits. In the late stages of that game, everything went through the captain for his approval. In his approval, he stamped ?win at all cost? and they did go on to win the game, 5?2.


Sagitun has been playing with a whole lot of emotion since defeating Griga United in a penalty shoot out in the first game of the 2004 playoffs. Last weekend?s unfortunate traffic accident that involved two of the Sagitun players, Gabriel Ramos and David ?Ratt? Torres, certainly added more passion and emotion to the positive results of that game.


Sagitun?s defense has been solid all year round in comparison to their offense, which has sputtered a little bit, forcing Hilly Muschamp in quite a few games to move up from his defensive position into the forward line. Those moves have produced wins.


Gatorade Juventus will play their final playoff game at Belmopan?s Isidoro Beaton Stadium against Builders? Hardware Bandits. Both the Bandits and Juventus lost their last game. Juventus lost to Griga United, 3-2, at the Carl Ramos Stadium last weekend and the Bandits lost to Sagitun, 5?2, at home.


When Juventus visited the Bandits March 20th2004, Juventus won that game, 2?1, and in the rematch in Shugga City, the teams played to a 3?3 tie. Juventus started the regular season on a tear, winning their first three games. Who snapped their win streak? Sagitun. The first loss was 3?2 at the People?s Stadium.and in the rematch down south in the banana belt May 15th2004, Juventus lost again, 2-0. After those two losses, Juventus? only wins came over the Calcutta Bulls, and a 1-0 win over Griga United.


According to reports out of Orange Walk Town, the Juventus? losses came when they were experiencing managerial problems and had a couple of key players suffering from injuries. But our Northern sources also said that they have since corrected those problems as they enter the championship.


To appreciate Juventus? style of play, you would have to watch the game from a perch above field level, and you would literally see the ball moving from one point to the next with a few long passes across the field. That has kept them rolling to where they are today.


Though unconfirmed, there may be a controversy brewing in the Juventus camp. It is reported that Juventus? franchise owner Dan Fabro was allegedly asked by Juventus head coach, Jorge Nunez, and goalkeeper/manager Giovanni Rodriguez to come on board for the rest of the playoffs, so that they, Nunez and Rodriguez, could concentrate on the issues on the field and not have to be concerned about managerial matters.


It is said, however, that Giovanni Rodriguez is refuting ever having spoken to Dan Fabro about coming back to help. According to other media reports, it is also said that the Orange Walk people are unappreciative of the idea of having Fabro back with the team. At press time, we were unable to contact Dan Fabro for comment.


Juventus has both playoff top guns on their team – Daniel Thomas and Oliver ?Lionheart? Hendricks. They have four goals apiece. Sagitun?s Francis ?Carcass? Arzu and Kenton ?Goalvez? Galvez got three goals, along with Deris ?Colombia? Benavides of the Bandits. Griga United?s rookie Ryan Simpson, Sagitun captain Hilly Muschamp and his midfielder, Mark ?Kelo? Leslie, all have two goals apiece.


In any case, all gunners are seeing game this weekend. For Juventus and Sagitun it means home field advantage, and for the Bandits and Griga, it?s all about pride. Juventus is headed to Belmopan for Saturday night?s game and Sagitun is waiting for Griga United to take the short ride down South, also Saturday night at 7:30. A win for either team gives them the home field advantage in the championship series.

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