The Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA) daCosta Cup schoolboy football season gets under way today with the opening match, a Zone B clash between defending champions Rusea’s High and Herbert Morrison Technical at the Montego Bay Sports Complex.
But apart from Rusea’s who else are likely to stand tall at the end of the season and who will be punching above their weight in 2012? The Gleaner looks at the contenders.
Position last season: Champions (defeated STETHS in the final)
Key players: Toreto Gregory, Anthony Walker, Richard Trench, Keano Williams, Demar Dohman, Ohigy Bowlyn. Zone B: Along with Frome Technical, Cambridge High, Green Island, Herbert Morrison and Merlene Ottey.
Coach’s view (Emerson Henry): “We want make it to the inter-zone round; anything beyond that will be bonus. We remain confident however.”
ST ELIZABETH TECHNICAL HIGH
Position last season: Runner-up (lost in final) to Rusea’s. Key players: Romario Thompson, Jason Jacobs and Danjay Smith.
Zone E: Along with Balaclava, Black River, Lacovia, Maggotty High and Munro.
Coach’s view (Omar Wedderburn): “It is fair to say we expect to make it back to the final.
Last year Rusea’s got the better of us, this year we think we can win it all and defend our Ben Francis KO title. We have a strong unit.Ó PETERSFIELD HIGH
Position last season: Beaten quarter-finalists Key players: Nicholas Dillon, Tavar Whyte, Andre Vassell and brothers Roniel and Akeem Whyte.
Zone D: Along with Godfrey Stewart, Grange Hill, Manning’s and Little London. Coach’s view (Machel Woolery): “We are aiming to go a step further than the quarter-finals. Making the semi-finals would be ideal for us and anything after that would be even better. Our squad looks good and will spring a few surprises.
PAUL BOGLE HIGH
Position last season: Beaten daCosta Cup semi-finalists. Players to watch: Oswayne Bogle, Jaheme Duncan, Alvas Powell, Dashawn Stanton, Sergeni Frankson and Lawrence Scott. Zone ): Along with Morant Bay High, Seaforth High, St. Thomas, Yallahs and Robert Lightbourne. Coach’s view (Richard Williams): “Hoping to make the semi-finals this year; anything less would be regarded as failure.”
Position last year: Semi-finalists. Players to watch: Ricardo Dennis (striker), Graham Brown, Malik Palmer, Alex Brown and Dane reid. Returning players to watch: Noel Johnson, Newton Henry, Kamal Henry and Donovan Morgan. Zone M: Along with Denbigh High, Foga Road High, Garvey Maceo, Bustamante High and Porus.
Coach’s view (Patrick ‘Jackie’ Walters): “It will difficult but we want to build on each game to win our zone and advance to the inter-zone round. We have the quality to go all the way once the players mature as a team during the season.”