Fielding a strong and rested team, Jade Tree United was fit and ready for their match against Christiana FC on Thursday, January 19.

With a late start time of 10:15PM keeping both teams up well past their bed times, the match started rather dully with both teams sluggish to start.

As the pace quickened, CFC brought the ball forward with a variety of plays. Within the first five minutes, CFC got on the board with a deadly and direct shot on JTU’s goal.

JTU then forced its way forward, attempting to keep possession and drive towards the Christiana net. Unfortunately, a series of passing miscues kept the ball at the feet of CFC and the team was able to push through the Jade Tree defenses, taking chance after chance at the net, though without any luck.

The score stood at 0-1 for most of the first half, until the final few minutes when CFC shocked JTU with a series of well put together plays that eventually put them up 0-5.

Reinvigorated, Jade Tree took to the second half with greater heart and intensity. The team began working its way up field and visibly communicating to each other. As the play continued to develop into something more cohesive and threatening, this created opportunities for Jade Tree’s Mike Hoffman, Mike Reed, Tim Owen, Casey Gallucio, Victor Alvarez and several other players to make attempts on goal individually or in pairs.

Christiana responded to JTU’s play by becoming more aggressive, resulting in several direct kicks for Jade Tree in a short span of minutes. However, Jade Tree could not convert these chances into goals.

Midway through, JTU ‘keeper Brian Olden sustained a foot injury while making a save. Jim Brooks, who was on the field in a defensive role, then substituted Olden for the remainder of the game.

Eventually, CFC was penalized after a player violently hurled himself at JTU’s Mike Reed, who folded to the ground. Luckily, Reed was dazed but OK and the referee had no choice but to send the offending Christiana player off the pitch.

As the match marched towards its finish, CFC and JTU continued to push each other, but it was Christiana who continued to get the better of Jade Tree and the match ended with the dismal loss of Jade Tree United 0-8 to Christina FC.

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