Haiti score the double at CFU Under-14 Challenge Series

Published on 29 August 2021

Haiti girls captured the Caribbean Football Union Girls’ Under 14 Challenge Series title. (Photo: CFU Media)

SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic (August 29, 2021)—Let’s hear it for Haiti, which lifted the boys’ and girls’ CFU Under-14 Challenge Series in the finals played at Feliz Sanchez Olympic Stadium on August 29, 2020. Puerto Rico went home runners-up in both competitions.

Haiti’s girls defeat Puerto Rico 1-0

The CFU 2021 Girls U14 Challenge Series Tier 1 final saw Haiti tackle Puerto Rico. Puerto Rico started the brighter of the two teams and created a few half chances in the first 15 minutes of the match.

Haiti began getting a foothold in the match through probing runs by star player Loudjina Etienne and Aslie Laguerre.  Puerto Rico settled in and defended with great organization and looking to play on the counter attack.  Haiti used their speed and athleticism to try unlock the Puerto Rican defense but to no avail, leading to a 0-0 half time score.

Haiti began the second half on the front foot, and Etienne and Pierreline Nazon tried to put the Puerto Rican back line under pressure early.  Skipper Chesnaida Nicolas saw her left footed shot from distance sail agonizingly wide of goal. 

Haiti began moving the ball quickly and committing bodies forward, continuously raiding the Puerto Rican half, resulting in the best chance of the match to that point in the 41st minute.

Nazon ran onto a pass in the penalty area but shot directly at Adrienne Cardona to make a regulation save.  Etienne again popped up around the Puerto Rican penalty area, but shot wide a minute later. 

Etienne was not to be denied and her goal came in the 45th minute.  She slotted home from close range after some good running by Nehamie Sain-Vilus. Sain-Vilus dribbled past two Puerto Rican defenders to set up Etienne to give Haiti a one goal lead. 

The goal seemed to deflate the Puerto Rican team, and Haiti continued to apply the pressure looking to extend their lead. Etienne had a golden opportunity to double her tally in the dying stages of the match with a 1v1 chance, but Cardona pulled of a great save with the Haitian forward bearing down on goal. 

The match ended 1-0 giving Haiti the 2021 CFU Girls Challenge Series title.

Moments after watching their female counterparts do battle, Haiti faced off against Puerto Rico in the Tier 1 Final in the 2021 CFU u14 Boys Challenge Series. 

Haiti’s Boys defeat Puerto Rico 3-1

Moments after watching their female counterparts do battle and win, Haiti’s boys faced off against Puerto Rico in the Tier 1 final in the 2021 CFU Under-14 Boys Challenge Series. 

Haiti began the more enterprising of the teams and made the opening minutes of the match uncomfortable for the young Puerto Ricans.

Much of the early running for Haiti came from Christerson Jean, Schneilorens Lebrun and Denickson Dajolly.  It was Dajolly who should have given Haiti the lead in the 9th minute, but he could not take advantage of an errant pass out of the back by Puerto Rico. He hit his side-footed shot well wide of the target. 

Haiti continued to dominate the early possession with quick passing and continued to put their opponents under pressure.  Dajolly’s pace and power proved to be unsettling and forced a reflex save from Sebastian Roman in goal for Puerto Rico.

Puerto Rico dropped bodies behind the ball and started to play on the counter attack, but each attempt was handled comfortably by the Haitian defense.

Jean came close to giving his team the lead, using some neat footwork to create space at the top of the penalty area, but his top corner effort narrowly missed the goal.  Haiti had a penalty appeal turned down in the closing moments of the second half, which should have yielded a spot kick for Haiti.  The first half ended with team deadlocked nil all.

The half time break did little to diminish the appetite of the young Haitians, and they began the second stanza much the same way they ended the first. However, this time, Puerto Rico matched them for intensity and purpose in the early moments of the second half. 

The deadlock was finally broken in the 42nd minute via a long-distance effort by Jean. Picking up the ball deep in the Puerto Rican half of the field, Jean shifted his marker and sent a curling right footed effort to the left of a diving Roman.

Haiti’s second goal was not far behind.  In what could easily be described as the goal of the tournament, Lebrun latched on to a deft back heal pass from Jean in the 45th minute and sent a powerful left-footed shot into the roof of the net from 18 yards out, beating Roman all ends up.

Puerto Rico came close to pulling a goal back in the 62nd minute, but a tip-save by GK from a Carlos Ayala free kick just outside the area kept Puerto Rico off the score board.

Substitute Juan Agosto pulled Puerto Rico back in the match in the 65th minute, scoring from close range after Haiti failed to deal with a corner kick.

Any ideas of Puerto Rico pressing for the win was short lived as only a minute later Lebrun returned the favor in setting up Jean for his second of the match to put Haiti up 3 goals to 1 and effectively putting the result beyond doubt.  An injury time goal by Lebrun was the icing on the cake—this time with some excellent footwork to get the ball onto his favored left foot and again beating Roman from distance. 

The result meant that the Young Haitians completed the double in this edition of the CFU U14 Challenge Series following the girls 1-0 triumph of their Puerto Rican counterparts earlier in the day.

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