Stationery Stores defeated Shooting Stars 1-0 in a Nigeria National League match played on Thursday at the Onikan Stadium, Lagos.
Goals from Onwurebe Raphael and Festus Ajah were all the Flaming Flamingoes needed to gain three points over their age-long rivals the Oluyole Warriors.
The game which is the first between both teams in almost two decades saw Stores dominate the early seconds of the tension-soaked encounter but were unable to near the rock solid 3SC defence. Ajah made the first attempt at goal in the fourth minute but his attempt off a corner kick was not enough to threaten Abiodun Akande who was in goal for the Oluyole Warriors.
Few minutes later, Ajah forced Akande to a brilliant safe after his header was punched for a corner kick. Stores' dominance became more intense and they should have taken the lead in the 12thminute as Jegede Olaniyi’s header hit the wood work.
The visitors launched a comeback but their attacking forays were brought under constant check by the Ayo Filano anchored defence. Goalkeeper Akande made another brilliant save midway through the first half after saving Ajah’s shot off a free-kick taken as a result of Gbenga Ogunleye’s foul on Jeje Olaniyi.
Shooting Stars could have gone ahead in the 29th minute but Edem Francis’ penalty rattled the cross bar after Samuel Akinbinu was hacked down in the penalty area of the Flamingoes.
The hosts, however, took the lead on 39 minutes when Onwurebe headed past Akande to send the stadium into frenzied joy.
Stores’ onslaught continued 11 minutes after the restart when Ajah headed past a shell-shocked 3SC, whose defenders could not clear a corner kick taken by the hosts.
Though, Frank Howard made all his changes mid-way into the second half, that could not hand his team a glimmer of hope as Stores stamped their authority in every department of the game.
Stationery Stores are yet to lose a game after three matches in the Nigeria Nationwide League and they now have five points.