ANAMBRA 4-1 EBONYI
Holy Name Secondary School, Anambra practically saved the best for last after they smashed Community Secondary School, Ndaburu, Ebenyi, Ebonyi 4-1 in the first match of the third day of event at the Copa Coca Cola U15 Regional Playoffs held at the Owerri City College pitch on Thursday.
Before Thursday match, Anambra had been held to two consecutive draws by Abia and Rivers respectively but they were in killer mood to record their first win of the competition after they were put in the driver’s seat by Chiemere Udemuzue before Stephen Offor added two goals and Eze Ugochukwu with the fourth goal.
It was a rampant display by the Anambra representatives who probably were told that they could still nick the ticket with an emphatic win against hapless Ebonyi side who lost all their three matches and scored a meager two goal from three matches including the consolation goal against Anambra scored by Nworu Chidiebere.
Anambra finished their Owerri centre account with five points from three matches while Ebonyi went back home empty handed with no point from three matches. They conceded a whopping nine goal and netted two from the three games played.
ABIA 1-1 RIVERS
The final game of the Copa Coca Cola U15 Regional Playoffs Owerri Centre pitted Abia’s Ibeku High School with Community Secondary School, Amadi Ama, Rivers. It was an explosive encounter with both teams giving their all in their bid to record an outright win which will confirm them as the centre’s representatives at the national playoffs in Lagos later in the year.
Abia started the better of the two and it was no surprise they raced into a surprise lead after the referee spotted an infringement in the 18 yard box of Rivers close to the end of the first half. Onuoha Nwachukwu who has been among the star players of the competition in Owerri stepped forward and buried the ball to the bottom left corner of the Rivers’ goalkeeper, Ibinabo Gabriel who had no answer to it.
The goal conceded by Rivers gingered them up and they soon woke up from their slumber and started dictating the pace of the game but Abia held on to ensure that they took an halftime lead that could cement a ticket to the national finals in Lagos if they could maintain the ascendancy in the second half.
Abia, who came with the youngest squad to the competition, were still very forceful at the start of the second half but they were undone by poor marksmanship and the decisive and calm saves of Ibinabo in goal for Rivers who ensured they didn’t concede another goal. Abia’s lack of initiative in the goal area of Rivers handed their foes a lifeline and they began playing with more composure and finesse hoping to get an equalizer first before negotiating the match-winner and they started bombarding Abia will long balls lunge into their vital area.
Rivers’ wave of ceaseless incursions will later pay off when they were awarded their own penalty after the referee spotted a hand ball in the Abia’s vital area and Israel Achibong, who is the younger brother of Godwin Achibong who has scored vital goals for his team, was called upon to draw his team level with an expertly delivered shot to the bottom left corner of Abia’s goalkeeper Onyebuchi Kingsley.
Both teams scampered thereafter to get the match-winner that will guarantee them the ticket but there was no sufficient time as the centre referee signaled the end of the match with scores stood at 1-1 apiece.