Thomas stars as Cavalier blank Moca 3-0
Shaneil Thomas produced an outstanding performance for Cavalier in their Group A Concacaf Caribbean Cup game at Sabina Park last night as he netted a hat-trick to turn back Moca FC of the Dominican Republic 3-0.
Thomas headed home from close range on a quick break midway the first half then added a second early in the second half with a delicate finish before sealing his three-timer from the spot 13 minutes from time.
Cavalier now lead the group with seven points after three matches while Moca are in third-place with three points after two games.
The visitors controlled the possession but found it difficult to create clear-cut chances against a resolute Cavalier defence.
Cavalier, who were more direct in their approach, had a few openings before Thomas latched onto a cross from the right and headed home from three yards in the 24th minute.
The game continued along the same path in the second half with Moca trying to break down their opponents with quick, intricate passes.
However, Cavalier found a second goal on another quick move in the 58th, which ended with Thomas slipping the ball past Odalis Baez in goal.
Moca's best chance fell to Sebastian Valencia in the 73rd minute but he failed to connect cleanly with goalkeeper Vino Barclett at his mercy from six yards.
Three minutes later Thomas stole possession from a defender and was cut down in the area, resulting in a penalty which the former Jamaica College star calmly slotted home from the spot to make it 3-0.
The 21-year-old, who was elated with his first career hat-trick, said he took some time to get going but once he got the first goal all seemed to fall into place.
"The pitch wasn't working well for me. It was wet so the ball kept sliding off my boot. But after I got the first goal everything became natural after that.
"This is my fourth goal in the Caribbean Cup. In the first match I scored a penalty but this is my first career hat-trick and it is the greatest feeling of all," he said