PLAY ACTION: The Bahamas women’s national soccer team lost 6-1 to Grenada last night in their opening game of the Concacaf Gold Cup at the Thomas A Robinson National Stadium. Photo: Moise Amisial/Tribune Staff
#By TENAJH SWEETING
#Tribune Sports Reporter
#THE Bahamas’ senior women’s national football team went down 6-1 to Grenada in game one of the Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) Women’s Road to Gold Cup.
#Team Bahamas got their feet wet for the first time in three decades on home soil at the Thomas A Robinson stadium last night against the away team, who returned to the international level for their second consecutive year.
#The home team’s relatively young club applied strong defensive pressure in the first half but the experience of Grenada trumped them in the second period, leading to their first loss of the competition.
#Ricqea Bain, head coach of the senior women’s national team, talked about the way they played in their first time back on the soccer scene after 30 years.
#“We started the game a little nervous. This is our first international match as a senior team, we began the knock the ball around, [and] knock the nerves off. Unfortunately, the other team was able to secure the match but we were able to score our first international goal,” she said.
#The head coach added that despite the loss the team made some strides in executing passes through the midfield, finishing a goal and are looking not only to score more goals in Grenada but also work on development.
#Team Grenada has been preparing for their second appearance in the Concacaf competition since February and they showcased their experience in the opening game.
#The now 1-0 team was the first to strike in the initial half. Within the first 12 minutes of game one, Grenada’s Nia Thompson launched the ball to the back of the net to connect on her first of two goals in the game.
#Shortly before the culmination of the first half, Demitra Mcclure of Team Bahamas retaliated at the 44:00 segment of the game. She got the step on her defender and darted the ball past Grenada’s goalkeeper Keoana Salandy to follow up a goal scored by Grenada’s forward Roneisha Frank. Mcclure scored the lone goal for the home team and made the score 2-1 going into the break.
#Jake Rennie, head coach of Grenada, talked about the difference in gameplay between the two teams in the first and second half.
#“I think we could have done much better but then again it is our first game in a long time. It was okay we were able to come out 2-1 in the first half and the second half was much better, we changed the pace of the game, moved the ball around a little, got chances we scored and took it away from The Bahamas,” Rennie said.
#Although the coach was happy with the win he felt his team came out a bit flat to start the game, but they picked it up in the second half.
#In the second half, the visiting Group C team scored the majority of their goals toward the tail end of the game.
#Thompson collected her second goal of the game at the 74:00 juncture to push the Grenada lead to 3-1. A mere two minutes later, Brianna Capron was issued a red card for a hard foul to a Grenada player at the 76:00 mark.
#The away team remained unphased and midfielder Malia Ramdhanny got in on the scoring action three minutes later and advanced the score to 4-1. With the clock winding down, Team Bahamas’ chances to score dwindled while Grenada kept the momentum going.
#Game one wrapped up with the latter earning two more goals from midfielder Ronniellia Bubb and forward Abigail Williams in the game’s final moments.
#Despite the tough opening game loss, Team Bahamas will have the chance to redeem themselves in their away match against Grenada 4pm this Sunday, September 24.
#The senior women’s team is playing out of League C and Group C along with Grenada and the US Virgin Islands.
#The group’s winner will advance to play the victor of Group B to determine which lone team will advance to the Gold Cup.