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Jade Tree United went up against Environmental Alliance on Monday, March 3 at the PAL center in the first round of the NCC playoffs.
Elated by their second straight year in the playoffs, Jade Tree United traveled to the PAL center with their supporters ready to avenge their loss to EA earlier in the regular season.
Both teams began the match tentatively, preferring to possess the ball and move forward cautiously.
EA made the first real attempt on goal of the match and were rewarded with their first goal of the evening.
Over the next 10 minutes, EA were able to put four more into the JTU net.
Down 5-0, it was Shane Chanpimol who dutifully netted JTU’s first of the night 16 minutes in with a beautiful shot just outside the box. It was with this shot that Jade Tree regained its composure and surged forward with pace and talent.
Only one minute after Chanpimol’s goal, Casey Gallucio caught the ball on a bounce back from Ryan Mann and gracefully knocked one into the old onion bag with relative ease.
Too complete the run of Jade Tree scoring, Tony Coates secured his first goal of his JTU career when he blasted the ball from the half to smash the ball into the back of the EA net.
Scoring three in quick succession, Jade Tree looked to be able to make up the difference and held EA 5-3 at the half.
EA quickly sprang back to life mere minutes into the second half. Despite looking tired, EA added two more to their score before Jade Tree took command and held them at bay.
Alfredo Agra rallied the JTU troops back into action as he whipped one past the EA â€˜keeper to take home his first goal of the season. The ecstatic Agra celebrated by pulling up his shirt to reveal a Cuban Flag panted on his chest in support of his ex-National teammates, who are being held captive after a failed defection attempt last summer.
JTU were given a direct kick on the EA net after Rich Emge was fouled just on the edge of the box. The kick was deflected and JTU continued to scrap to put more points on the board.
The score remained at 7-4 for a stretch until Alex Milne pushed forward, dodging oncoming EA defenders, and handily scoring JTU’s 5th for the night.
At this point, EA seemed to awake from their slumber and get back into the match. As EA hurried down the right side of the pitch, they connected more than once with players in the Jade Tree box to add another 3 goals in quick succession.
But this being the playoffs, Jade Tree refused to quit and fought back heartily in the waning minutes of the match. With every attempt on the EA goal, JTU appeared to be closer to adding a goal or more to their score, but the ball kept going wide of the net or hitting post. The visibly frustrated team pressed on despite all odds and were rewarded with one more goal by Shane Chanpimol, whose volley hit the back of an EA defender, popped up over him and into the EA net just as the final whistle was blown.
As glorious and freaky as it was, it was not enough to save Jade Tree United from being eliminated from the playoffs 10-6.
Manager Darren Walters summed up the season rather simply stating that, “My team has performed above and beyond my expectations as usual. Despite, injuries, low morale, poor refereeing decisions against us, and general fatigue-we managed to finish fifth and make the playoffs. I am extremely proud of how hard all my players worked to make our fourth season our best to date.” Asked how the team will spend the off-season, Walters replied, ”Several key players will be meeting up with their international teams to prepare for the Euros, while others will take a break before returning to JTU training camp in a few weeks.”
Season Record: Fifth Place (4-6-0)
Jade Tree United 2007/2008 Season Statistics & Awards:
Golden Boot: Shane Chanpimol
MVP: Brian Olden (4th year in a row)
Most Saves: Jim Brooks
Most Fouls Against: Rich Emge
Most Fouled Upon: Rich Emge
Best Goal: Jim Brooks / Krista Butler / Tony Coates
Most Heart: Casey Gallucio
Team Spirit Award: Ryan Mann
Shane Chanpimol: 22
Victor Alvarez: 9
Alexander Milne: 9
Rich Emge: 8
Ryan Mann: 7
Casey Gallucio: 3
Darren Walters: 3
Alfredo Agra: 1
Jim Brooks: 1
Krista Butler: 1
Tony Coates: 1
JADE TREE UNITED SOCCER SCARVES STILL AVAILABLE!
The beloved Pride of Delaware, the Jade Tree United soccer team, has finally made available scarves for its supporters and friends of the team and its sponsor, Jade Tree.
The scarves are 100% acrylic knit in the Jade Tree United colors of orange, black and white. Both sides feature the Jade Tree logo, with the front reading “Jade Tree United” and the back reading “Pride of Delaware”.
Strictly limited to 150, these scarves show your support of both the Jade Tree United soccer team and their sponsor, Jade Tree. A great buy for fans of soccer, music or looking good off the pitch. Make sure to get yours today.
Scarves can be found here for the low price of only $18.75. Click on the link to the Jade Tree E-Store below to order yours today!