A goal four minutes into the second half from McKauly Tulloch helped Harbour View FC to a narrow 1-0 win against Montego Bay United FC in a competitive third-round Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) game at the Compound on Sunday.
It was the second consecutive win for the former four-time RSPL champions following a slump in form which saw them losing four consecutive games before checking the slide with wins to climb steadily away from the relegation zone up to eighth place on 33 points, while Montego Bay United remained third on 50 points after losing for the seventh time in the campaign.
It was a compelling game throughout. Montego Bay United dominated the first half but were still unable to pierce the Harbour View defence. However, in this period, it was Harbour View who created the better scoring chances. John-Ross Edwards came closest to giving Harbour View the lead but his shot bore more power than precision.
With the chasing pack in the relegation battle between eight and 12 continuing to gather momentum by winning, Harbour View also had to keep their rediscovered winning form intact. And for the second half, they returned even more gritty than the first and it paid off.
When Harbour View last defeated Montego Bay United, Tulloch was the scorer. He was at it again. Before the boys from the west could settle into any rhythm of sorts, Tulloch found an opening between opposing defenders, including goalkeeper Jacomeno Barrett, and headed the ball across the line from close-up for what turned out to be the winning goal. Barrett did get a hand to the ball on its way, but there was enough power to force the shot across the line.
Harbour View FC winning coach Ludlow Bernard was most pleased with the result. “Defeating the defending champions is no small measure considering where we are coming from recently with a poor winning form. Yes! It is a positive step. It is a result for which we worked towards achieving during the course of the week leading into the game. There is a renewed commitment to the group and once we can keep our players healthy and focused we will continue to play good football and produce these types of rewarding results.” Roderick Underwood, coach of Montego Bay United, was unavailable for post-match comments.
Harbour View FC — Devon Haughton, Andre Messam, Javain Brown, Nicholas Beckett, Akeem Priestley, Evan Taylor, Rosario Harriott, Kemar Bennett, John-Ross Edwards, McKauly Tulloch, Sean Frazer (Sheldon McKoy 88th)
Subs not used: Christian Kluvi, Ranique Muir, Ajeanie Talbott, Daniel Green, Fabian Grant, Michael Martin
Booked: Priestly (90th)
Montego Bay United FC — Jacomeno Barrett, Orlando McBayne, Kemar Drake, Fabio McCarthy (John Barrett 83rd), Ladale Richie, Dwyane Ambusley, Keniel Kirlew, Ronaldo Rodney (Jermaine Woozencroft 64th), Johann Weatherly (Allan Ottey 59th), Dwayne Gordon, Donovan Carey
Subs not used: David Swaby, Nicholas Stewart, Deshane Beckford, Jourdain Fletcher
Booked: McBayne (60th), Richie (85th), John Barrett (90th)
Referee: Daneon Parchment
Assistant Referees: Stephanie Dale-Yee Sing, Nicholas Anderson
Fourth Official: Odette Hamilton
Match Commissioner: Martin Lyn
Source: The Jamaica Observer