Glen Cove defeated Garden City for the O-30 title. (FrontRowSoccer.com Photo)
By Michael Lewis
UNIONDALE, N.Y. — If you notice that the Glen Cove Over-30 men’s team exhibits a little more skill and soccer savvy than its opponents, there is a good reason.
The squad has four former members of the Jamaican national team on its roster.
While the Long Island Soccer Football League did not have its full complement of ex-international players for the Joe Goldberg indoor soccer tournament, it did quite well in the competition, capturing the O-30 title for the second consecutive year Sunday.
Glen Cove registered a 2-0 triumph over Garden City.
“This is very special. Every win is special for us, of where we’re coming from,” head coach Dwight Jones said. “We’ve been trying to build this team for quite a while. So, every achievement is special for us.”
Several former Jamaican professional and national team players have moved to the metropolitan area and Long Island after their prime playing days are over.
And that’s good for an 0-30 side like Glen Cove. In fact, they know each other because they have performed with or against each other for years in Jamaica.
“We’re used to playing together from our youth days in Jamaica,” Jones said. “Some of them come back and forth in the summer time to play in the summer leagues, from Brooklyn, Bronx and all over.”
Glen Cove settled things within a span of 124 seconds in the O-30 final.
First, Jerome Robinson boosted Glen Cove into the lead with 16:58 left in the game, firing a free kick around the defensive wall into the lower right corner.
John-Ross Edwards, a former Jamaican international, doubled the margin at 14:54, connecting from the left side. Edwards, 31, played for Harbour View FC in his native country from 2007-17, scoring 21 times in 182 appearances. He has represented the Reggae Boyz four times since 2014.
During the group stage, Glen Cove rolled over the competition with a 6-0-0 mark while outscoring its foes, 22-6. It continued its conquest with a 6-0 victory over Istria in the semifinals before recording yet another clean sheet in the final.
The LISFL O-30 teams have found it difficult to keep up with Jones and Glen Cove over the past couple of years outdoors as the team has enjoyed an undefeated run.
In fact, the Glen Cove O-30’s will open their season against archrival Baisley United, another team that has some talented Jamaican players, at Idlewild Park Field No. 1 Sunday, March 10 at 2 p.m.
“We’re looking forward to the start to the outdoor season,” Jones said.
Given Glen Cove’s track record, the same might not be said by all of its opponents.