Sittingbourne U18 v Ramsgate U18
Woodstock April 30th, 2017
As the Sittingbourne players walked out of the dressing room alongside today’s rivals, Ramsgate, they knew that only a win would see them crowned as winners of the U18 Kent Youth League, Premier Division South.
They came out of the blocks quickly and within two minutes, they were off to a flying start. The ball came in from the left, Taylor Naessens flicked it on and the captain, Jardel Bunda-Kamara, pushed it into the bottom right of the goal, well beyond the reach of the rooted Ramsgate keeper.
Buoyed by the early goal, Sittingbourne kept up the pressure and limited Ramsgate to some opportunist strikes and a few on-target but tame shots that were easily dealt with by Billy Johnson, the keeper.
Twenty-five minutes into the match and the Brickies got another to give them a healthy two goal cushion. Again the ball came in from the left but this time it was low and hard. Jared Trespaderne got his boot firmly behind the ball and sent a thundering volley fizzing into the net, once again in the bottom right hand corner. The keeper had dived but it was more of a token gesture as the ball was well past him before he could even move.
The second goal had an effect on both sides. Ramsgate, although not out of it by any means seemed to lose a little of their aggression whereas Sittingbourne tried to take full advantage with Bunda-Kamara and Trespaderne both coming close, the Ramsgate defence was resolute in stopping any more goals going in.
After the break the Brickies maintained the pressure with a succession of cross-field passes, balls diagonally through the defence and even a couple of mazy runs by Jake Embery trying to find a way through the Ramsgate back line, only to find that they were defending in numbers and the direct route to goal was always blocked.
Sittingbourne’s constant pressure almost paid off when the Ramsgate keeper made a great save, the ball came straight back out to near the penalty spot where a gaggle of players all tried to either clear it or score. Eventually, the situation was saved by the keeper who managed to fall on the ball just as one of their players went down injured allowing everybody to catch their breath after a manic couple of minutes.
Later in the half, their goalie was tested again, this time for speed when he just managed to get to the ball first, once at the right fore-corner of his box when Sami Meziane would have been through and less than four minutes later, a route one ball to the right of the penalty box almost saw Trespaderne get his second.
However another goal was not to be had and the Brickies eventually settled for a very creditable final score of 2-0.
All through the match, the determination and desire to be champions was there for all to see and Sittingbourne U18’s, as Champions of the league, deserve all the accolades they can get.
Well done, lads!
1. Billy Johnson
2. Jardel Bunda-Kamara (c)
5. Edward Bensley
6. Harrison Hatful
7. Harry Collins
8. Taylor Naessens
9. Jake Embery
10. Bradley Schafer
11. Rafe Brown
12. Sami Meziane
15. Ryan Catmull
16. Connor Wilkins
17. Jared Trespaderne
Photographs courtesey of Jace Media