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Another Win For St. Lucian Cricketers

    (15 December 2000) - Dominica batted first in their second round Windward Islands under-fifteen match against St. Lucia in Trinidad and Tobago Friday. With a varied bowling attack, St. Lucia pinned their opponents down, limiting them to 76 all out. Ervin Frederick took four for 12.
    St. Lucia, batting first, had scored 143 in their opening match against Grenada. A target of 76 proved too small for the Dominicans to defend. Craig Emmanuel, the St. Lucian skipper, made an unbeaten 21 to lead his side to 76 for 3. He had made 33 in St. Lucia's opening game. Against Dominica, Asa Joseph added 13 not out, but Frederick was man of the match.

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Lucian Connection Running Trinbago Football

    (15 December 2000) - W Connection Football Club, the Trinidad and Tobago Professional Footballl League champions, are favored to take the Lions' share of prizes this weekend at the annual presentation function of the Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation. WCFC have eight St. Lucians on their books, including national captain Earl Jean.
    Stuart Charles-Fevrier, St. Lucia's former technical coordinator and head coach of W Connection, is tipped to win Coach of the Year honours after leading his club to victory in the PFL and FA Trophy this season. 30-year-old midfielder and Connection skipper Reynold Carrington is among the contenders for footballer of the year, and Connection will be a strong contender to win both the senior and junior "Club of the Year" titles.

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Pacesetters/Cantonement Win Mon Repos Volleyball

    (13 December 2000) - Mon Repos' Youth and Sports Council ended its inaugural volleyball tournament National Day on the Patience Multipurpose Court. The team of Pacesetters/Cantonement defeated Ryders 23-23, 25-13, 19-25, 25-18. Seven teams took part in this competition, and the St. Lucia Amateur Volleyball Association has pledged its support for the further development of the sport in the Mon Repos area.
    Early in 2001 SLABA will be embarking on an outreach exercise, designed to spread the game of volleyball islandwide. The national men's team has already done some training in Desrisseaux. Players from that community have been invited to train with the team.

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Big Opening Win For Young Lucian Cricketers

    (14 December 2000) - For the first time ever, the Windward Islands under-fifteen cricket competition (originally slated for Castries) began outside the Windwards today, with St. Lucia facing Grenada and Dominica against St. Vincent and the Grenadines, all in Trinidad and Tobago.
    Led by St. Mary's College batsman Craig Emmanuel, St. Lucia took first knock in their opening game. Emmanuel scored 33 in St. Lucia's innings of 143 from their 50 overs. In the Grenadians' turn at the crease, St. Lucian spinner Twain Walters applied the pressure early and often, aided and abetted by his faster colleagues. Twain ended with 3 for 20 as Grenada were bundled out for 88 in 30.2 overs and St. Lucia picked up the 55-run win.
    Dominica also beat St. Vincent and the Grenadines by 5 wickets in Thursday's opening round of play.

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Into the Semis, St. Lucia

    (14 December 2000) - They say it doesn't matter, as long as it's a W. The St. Lucian team must share those sentiments after a relatively narrow victory over Antigua/Barbuda in this year's Caribbean Netball Association under-sixteen netball championships in Jamaica. Melissa Alfred of Sir Ira Simmons Secondary converted 20 of 31 shots on goal as St. Lucia eked out a 25-19 win, their second consecutive success after defeating Barbados 26-23 on Tuesday.
    With the win over Antigua/Barbuda, St Lucia earned a berth in the semifinal round against Group 'A' winners Trinidad & Tobago. The Sarah Alexander-led St Lucians, with two wins and a loss, ended second in Group 'B' with 10 points, followed by losing 1999 finalists Barbados (seven) and Antigua/Barbuda (one). Jamaica won Group 'B' with a perfect record.

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National Ride and Run

    (13 December 2000) - Entrepot, Roadbusters and Sammy Joseph were the big winners Wednesday as the National Cycling Association and Amateur Athletics Association celebrated National Day with events on the Castries city circuit.
    Entrepot Secondary won the women's road relay in 14:29.38 with a team comprising Yana Joseph, Jana Mathurin, Mina Philip and the amazing Levern Spencer. 30 seconds behind them were Survivors, followed by Roadbusters Sparkle and Survive. The latter team comprised junior members of Survivors, (Louise St. Remy, Albina Joseph and the Griffith twins, Shena and Shanette) members between the ages of nine and fifteen. Notably absent, perhaps, were the little ladies of Julian Hilaire's Grass and Tarmat Club.
    Roadbusters' main men's team came better, with Wayne 'Ali' St. Ange, Stuart Albert, John Gaston and Gavin 'Ducky' Lesporis clocking 11:02.41 to beat X-S by five seconds. Plus Stars, featuring Pamenos Ballantyne of St. Vincent and the Grenadines with his compatriot Campbell Richardson and St. Lucians Fabian Felix and Marvin Eristhee, were third by 26 seconds.
    Sammy Joseph won three of the four cycling events on the afternoon, taking the match sprint, 10-lap race and 3-lap race. Haze Pelage won the 5-lap mountain bike race to stop Sammy from taking everything home.

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Assizes For Roy Marshall

    (14 December 2000) - Dominican allrounder Roy Marshall will appear before a judge in St. Lucia next February on a charge of causing grievous bodily harm, after an incident between himself and a local groundsman left the groundsman with a broken arm.
    Wilbert 'Canawi' Frederick allegedly insulted Marshall while the latter was exiting Mindoo Philip Park on Friday, 8 December, the second day of the third-round Windward Islands cricket match between St. Lucia and Dominica. According to eyewitness reports, Marshall responded by striking the groundsman. A scuffle ensued, and Frederick's arm was shattered. Marshall was arrested Saturday morning and charged.
    Thursday morning, represented by Winston Hinkson, Marshall appeared before magistrate Florita Nicholas. After promising to return to St. Lucia in February 2001 so the case could be heard, Marshall was bailed out by Trevor Philip, the acting president of the St. Lucia National Cricket Association. Philip made the gesture following a lengthy consultation with Dominica's cricket authorities. This week, the Windward Islands Cricket Board of Control said it would delay naming the sub-regional team for the 2001 Busta Cup first class competition pending developments in this case.
    As regular readers would know, Dominica handily defeated St. Lucia, emerging 2000 Windwards champs.

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Hard Volleyball Trip For St. Lucia

    (14 December 2000) - For thirteen years, St. Lucia ruled the roost in Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States men's volleyball. Each year, we won, dropping no more than an occasional game or two.
    Then, though, we'd go to the Caribbean Championships. Even if St. Lucia played well, they were always a step (or more) behind territories like Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago, Bahamas and Martinique.
    The thing is that St. Lucia never played any of those territories until it was time for the Caribbean champs. Meanwhile, Barbados went setting and spiking with teams like Cuba and Mexico, Martinique built on their already-strong club system and St. Lucia sort of stood still.
    Well, this weekend, a little over a month after losing the OECS title for the first time, St. Lucia will send its most inexperienced team in a decade to a tournament in Martinique, where the host territory and St. Lucia will play Barbados and Cuba. Under the captaincy of Jason 'Long' Octave, St. Lucia's chances of winning are slim, especially with a true heavyweight like Cuba in the field, but it should be a great learning experience.
    It's also long overdue, but better late than never. The average age of this team is perhaps twenty-three (if that high) with a couple of teenagers among the main players. Having lost several players to retirement and college, it's rebuilding time for the national team. With this trip to Martinique, local authorities appear to be setting a good foundation.

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Dominican Cricketer Jailed in St. Lucia

    (10 December 2000) - Dominica won this year's Windward Islands senior cricket tournament by defeating St. Lucia by eight wickets, and inside three days at Mindoo Philip Park. The most newsworthy incident, however, had nothing and everything to do with the field of play.
    With St. Lucia 95/5 at close of play on the second day, veteran Dominica and Windwards allrounder Roy Marshall got into an altercation with a St. Lucian groundsman. Marshall allegedly broke the guy's hand. Next morning, the Dominican was picked up by the Royal St. Lucia Police Force on an assault and battery charge. He was released the same day, and it was thought that an out-of-court settlement had been arrived at, but the Windward Islands Cricket Board of Control says that charges are still pending. They've therefore delayed naming the Windwards team for January's Busta Cup first-class regional tournament. The team ought to be released shortly, though.
    Of secondary importance, Dominica won by eight wickets, putting up 95/2 after bowling St. Lucia out for a second innings 156. It was the second consecutive heavy loss for St. Lucia at home (their first match, against Grenada at New Queen's Park in St. George's, was rained out) and they were consigned to the bottom of the table on just four points.

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Lucian Netballers Equal U16 Record

    (13 December 2000) - Happy National Day indeed from St. Lucia's under sixteen netballers! Following a big opening game loss Monday night against host territory Jamaica in this year's Caribbean Netball Association age group championships, the St. Lucians beat bogeywomen Barbados 26-23.
    Sir Ira Simmons Secondary attacking player Melissa Alfred made 21 goals off 35 shots and second-year shooter Givianie Lucien of Soufriere made good on five of eight. The defensive duo of Nia Francis (CARE) and captain Sarah Alexander (Clendon Mason Memorial) harried the Barbadians mercilessly, and St. Lucia warmed up just right for their next game, against hapless Antigua Barbuda.

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Kunta Prepares

    (11 December 2000) - National volleyballer Ayinde Kunta Williams is hoping that his second season with Concordia College of New York will be a great deal more productive than his first, when a medical condition forced him to quit early on. In the United States, collegiate volleyball begins in second semester, so Kunta will be back in action next January.
    Last weekend, though, he was in a scratch tournament, alongside members of the Queens College volleyball team and New York's Creole Club. Kunta's team ended winless from four games, although he thought his teammates could have given a greater effort. Still, he says he "learned a lot from each game" a typical quote from this talented but humble young man.
    "I could see that our team was lacking balance, and we had no receivers so that was also a damper. With all of that in mind, though, we still maintained close scores." Kunta's team was beaten by Rhode Island (25-22,25-18) Set Me (25-20, 25-19) and Pro Link (25-22,25-20) a couple of which teams included players from the US national men's team.

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W Connection goes for two

    (December 11, 2000) - St. Lucia's former technical coordinator Stuart Charles Fevrier has taken more than his fair share of blows (not saying he hasn't made errors, but surely not as many as has been made out! Having played in Trinidad & Tobago before his sideline career, he tried to develop a "professional" team in St. Lucia, the ill-fated FC Pioneers. Ironically, it was to TnT that Stuart had to return to find success. As manager of Vibe CT 105 W Connection Football Club in Trinidad's Professional Football League, Stuart won that country's 1999 FA Trophy. In late November this year, his club followed up by winning the PFL title.
    Sunday evening, WCFC were looking for a successful FA Trophy defense and the double against Joe Public, the club owned by Fifa vice-president Austin Jack Warner. Four St. Lucians, including national captain Earl Jean, started for Charles Fevrier. Connection were unfortunate not to earn a first-half advantage, as a return ball from Jean down the right side to Ronaldo (!) saw the Brazilian finding the crossbar with a powerful left-footed shot. It was the best chance of the half.
    Fifteen minutes into the second half, St. Lucian forward Valencius Joseph replaced compatriot Titus 'Titi' Elva. Sheldon Mark came on as well, but it was Joseph who made the difference, drawing Trinidad international Brent Sancho into an infraction within the confines of the eighteen-yard box. Ten minutes from time, Jose Luiz Seabra converted to finally give Connection a lead. It would not last long. With 120 seconds left in regulation, Nigel Pierre whipped his head around to meet an Angus Eve free-kick, finding the back of the net and leveling the scores.
    As the shadows lengthened in the late evening at Gilbert Park, referee Neil Brizan decided to go straight to penalties. For Connection Jean, Francis Lastic, and Valencius Joseph were among the first six kickers, all of whom were successful. The Eastern Lions responded in kind, however, 'til Sancho came up. Connection players were kneeling with hands linked as 'keeper Anthony Clarke got into his stance. Defender Sancho hit low and to Clarke's right, but the custodian guessed right. A big man, he nullified Sancho's shot, and set off a Connection stampede.
    So Stuart Charles Fevrier is a double winner, thanks to a great season from a cosmopolitan roster that comprises eight St. Lucians, five Brazilians and a group of home-based players, all led by a Trinidadian skipper, Reynold Carrington. Charles Fevrier has had consistent support from the owner of W Connection, David John-Williams, a man who has backed his manger to the hilt. Stuart's tactical acumen and man-management have always been questioned in St. Lucia, but he seems to be doing just fine in the twin island republic.

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Tough Challenge For Lucian Netballers

    St. Lucia open their campaign on Monday in Group "B" against host territory Jamaica, but Eastern Caribbean netball giants St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) open their defence of the Caribbean under-16 netball title in a Group "A" game against Grenada on Sunday. SVG, with four players returning from their 1999 championship-winning team, tackle the Grenadians in the feature game of a triple header at the National Stadium courts.
    Jamaica, the 1998 champions, open the one-week tournament against Antigua and Barbuda in Group "B", and Trinidad and Tobago meet the Cayman Islands (Group "A") in earlier games. Dominica join SVG, Grenada, Cayman Islands and Trinidad and Tobago in Group "A", while the Group "B" listing is completed by Barbados.
    According to St. Lucia's manager, Carol Whilby-Maxwell, the Sarah Alexander-led St. Lucians are in the tougher group. She thinks, however, that starting well is important. "If we can get results against Jamaica and Barbados, I think we can win this competition. We have three young women [Alexander, Portia Lewis and Givanie Lucien] back from last year. Their leadership and experience will be very important to us."

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Dominicans Take The Upper Hand

    With the match in the balance, Dominica showed a great deal of determination and application to surpass St. Lucia's first innings total on the second day of their third-round Windward Islands cricket tournament fixture at Mindoo Philip Park in Castries.
    Resuming overnight on 49 for 3 in response to the St. Lucian score of 217, Dominica lost an early wicket to Gros Islet pacer Wendell Roberts, but the loss of a wicket meant the arrival at the crease of Dominican vice-captain Roy Marshall. The veteran Windwards allrounder (69) set up a partnership of 161 runs with his skipper, Balty Watt (109) and Dominica eventually were dismissed for 281, 64 runs ahead. Wicketkeeper Wayne Philip ended with 36, and Mon Repos' under-nineteen spinner Gairy Mathurin was unlucky not to get more than 3 for 65 from his 25 overs.
    The St. Lucians could hardly have expected as good a start as they had in the first innings, the opening partnership realizing 97 runs before vice-captain Greg Wilson went. Still, the Dominicans would not have expected five St. Lucian wickets to go for just 94 runs, either. That was what happened, though, and at stumps on day two St. Lucia are clinging to a thirty run lead. Captain Alton Crafton will be hoping his allrounders (Mathurin, Darren Sammy) can get going in partnership with under-nineteen captain Sergio Fedee, but this looks like another St. Lucian loss.

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Volleython 2000 Saturday At Vigie

    The St. Lucia Volleyball Association will be hosting its first volleyball  marathon on 9 December, 2000 at the Vigie Multipurpose Sports Complex, with scores of serious and casual players, including administrators, coaches and officials expected to take part. Also making an appearance ought to be members of various schools' volleyball teams, preparing for interscholastic competition in February 2001.
    Eight consecutive hours of volleyball will be played from 2pm Saturday, with patrons demonstrating their support for the national men's team by sponsoring a "set" during the afternoon's play. The national men's team, members of which will also be participating in the event, is leaving for a tournament in Martinique next weekend, where they'll be coming up against teams like Barbados, Cuba and the Bahamas.
    The national men's team, after dominating the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) championship since its inception nearly a decade and a half ago, lost to Dominica in the finals this year. The first-ever loss for St. Lucia in this competition marked a period of transition for the game here, with a number of veteran players retiring from volleyball at international level. The future, though, is now. The next generation of St. Lucian volleyball is finding its collective feet.

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Battle-Tested Lucians For Caribbean Netball

    (7 December 2000) - Ten young women (along with a couple of older ones) flew out of St. Lucia Thursday afternoon for the third Caribbean Under-Sixteen Netball Championships in Jamaica. Last year, in Barbados, when Windwards neighbours St. Vincent & the Grenadines won it all, St. Lucia finished third. This year, under coach Donna-Lynn Joseph, they're aiming to go at least one better.
    Team manager Carol Whilby-Maxwell, for whom this tournament in Jamaica will be a homecoming, says that St. Lucia's girls can win it all. "Ironically, our first game is against Jamaica (on the 11th) and we're in a tough zone that also includes Barbados. But I think if we can maybe get past Jamaica and beat Barbados, we could win this tournament."
    Leading the way for St. Lucia will be three players who were with the team last year. Clendon Mason Memorial's dynamic defensive presence, Sarah Alexander is the captain. She's joined in defence by Nia Francis of CARE, whose sister Shinelle just missed out on the age requirement for this tournament. Shooter Acadia Julien of Castries Comprehensive returns from last year's team, as does centre Miriam Augustin from St. Joseph's Convent.
    These kids were all among the top performers not only in this year's under-sixteen schools' tournament, but in the under-nineteen version as well. Versatile Silvrena Preville teamed up with Augustin at SJC for a share of the junior title, splitting with St. Lucia teammates Melissa Alfred and Portia Lewis of Sir Ira Simmons Secondary, the former a shooting star, the latter a centre-court phenom who'll perhaps come off the bench for the national team. Alfred and Lewis also were on Sir Ira's senior championship team.

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Auguste Hanging Tough

    (7 December 2000) - He said the rims were tight, and double-teams were coming fast and furious.  Yet he's not making excuses. 24-year-old St. Lucian forward Ewan Auguste enjoyed an All-American year with Division II Washburn University of Topeka, KS last year. This year he's a marked man, but he's still managing to average nearly thirteen points as a senior.
    With the touches rare against the University of Missouri-St. Louis on Wednesday evening, Ewan scored "only" eight points, but he led his team in rebounding (eight again) adding a steal and an assist for good measure. More important, his team earned a hard-fought road win, 65-63, justifying their status as the number five team in Division II by running their record to 4-1.

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St. Lucia Starts Well, But Late

    (7 December 2000) - Third round action began Thursday in the 2000 Windward Islands cricket championship, with St. Lucia facing tournament leaders Dominica at Mindoo Philip Park in Castries.
    Cellar-dwellers St. Lucia need this game to restore some pride after a rained out opening fixture against Grenada and a nine-wicket home loss to St. Vincent and the Grenadines so far. If St. Lucia wins this four-day game, they could act as spoilers in this competition, allowing the winner of the St. Vincent-Grenada match to walk away with this year's title.
    Put in to bat, St. Lucia got off to a running start, captain and vice-captain Alton Crafton (Gros Islet) and Greg Wilson (Central Castries) putting on 97 for the first wicket, before Wilson (35) went shortly after lunch. Thereafter, only a partnership between the skipper and his under-nineteen counterpart Sergio Fedee prevented the procession back to the pavilion.
    Crafton led all scorers with 85, a knock in which he regularly dispatched the spin duo of Roy Marshall and Shane Shillingford to the boundaries and beyond. After all, with a slightly heavy outfield impeding St. Lucia's ability to score runs along the ground, one might as well clear the ropes. Once Crafton and Fedee (34) went it was the turn of John Eugene, who's been on a tear this year. Not this game, though, as he was sent back for one. Libert Serieux, the Mon Repos opener who replaced Danny Harris (a pair against SVG) hit a lusty 31, with two fours and two sixes, but himself, wicketkeeper Alderman Lesmond (2) and allrounder Darren Sammy (2) all went rather to easily as St. Lucia fell for 217 a good score, but not what one might have expected.
    Dominica, with a spin-dominated attack, went through their overs quickly. The St. Lucian innings took 83 overs, and Dominica started their reply shortly after tea. They were quickly off the mark, but so were St. Lucia's bowlers, Gros Islet speedster Wendell Roberts and Mon Repos' under-nineteen allrounder Gairy Mathurin each grabbing wickets to leave their opponents 49-3 at the close, Balty Watt and Ray Casimir

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Young St. Lucians Off To Twin Isles

    (5 December 2000) - An inexperienced squad will represent St. Lucia in this year's Windward Islands under-fifteen cricket tournament. Of four young men from last year's squad still eligible for selection to this year's edition, three made the final cut. Craig Emmanuel of St. Mary's College is a tall, stylish batsman who was a Windwards age group selectee last year, and he leads the St. Lucia team. His deputy is Ron Edwards of Entrepot Secondary.
    Satish Singh, the multi-talented all-rounder from St. Mary's, will be called upon for leadership as well. Middle order batsman Alex Antoine (Roseau Combined) didn't play last year, but he accompanied the team and he'll be called upon as one of the main contributors with the bat.
    Left arm pacer Jervon St. Ville and his Corinth Secondary schoolmate Mervin Charles will be dangerous, and the Grande Riviere Senior Primary duo of Mervin Peter and Fieran Mathurin impressed during the year. Team manager is Fergus Louis (Corinth Secondary) and Brian Calixte has been named once again as the coach of this young side.
    Here's the interesting thing: the Windwards tournament is being held in Trinidad & Tobago, instead of St. Lucia as originally intended. Word from the Windward Islands Cricket Board of Control and National Cricket Association is that the sponsorship is coming from the twin island republic, and the sponsors want the tournament there. Fergus Louis is philosophical about it: "Hey, my feeling is that we're just happy to be playing cricket. If we're playing cricket and it's in Trinidad, I think our guys will be just as happy."

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Cellar For St. Lucia

    (5 December 2000) After two rounds of play in this year's Windward Islands cricket competition, St. Lucia is occupying the bottom spot on this four-team food chain, with Dominica on top.
    Monday afternoon, at Mindoo Philip Park, St. Lucia lost to St. Vincent and the Grenadines by nine wickets on what was essentially the third day (officially the fourth, but the first day was rained out) of their four-day second-round encounter. The St. Lucians had had no play in their first-round match against Grenada at Queen's Park in St. George's.
    Put in to bat, St. Lucia scored all of 96 runs in their first innings, a score to which SVG replied with 151. Deighton Butler made 40 and Orlando Jackson 39 batting in the lower order for the Vincentians, but they might have been curtailed but for an injury to Gros Islet paceman Joseph Hall. Once he was gone off to Victoria Hospital, his partner Wendell Roberts (4-31) soldiered on gamely, but St. Lucia conceded a 55-run first innings lead.
    They began poorly Sunday evening, did St. Lucia, losing captain Alton Crafton and under-nineteen national skipper Sergio Fedee (lbw 3) before stumps. After night watchman Edmund Smith went for nineteen Monday morning, and opener Greg Wilson for 33, the result was as good as decided. Vieux Fort's Windward Islands batsman Danny Harris completed a pair, and even though John Eugene led all scorers with 35, St. Lucia fared little better than in their first innings, making 105 for a lead of just fifty. Orlando Jackson had taken five wickets for 28 runs with his leg spin.
    Veteran batsman Dawnley Joseph made an unbeaten 32 as St. Vincent erased their target with just one wicket down. With the win, they're third in the standings. Dominica lost big to Grenada at home, but they remain a point ahead with one round of matches remaining. If Dominica take full points against St. Lucia this weekend at Mindoo Philip Park, the Dominicans will pick up this year's Windward Islands championship.

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Vieux Fort Does It Again

    (5 December 2000) - With goals from captain Iranja Arthur (his eighth this season) fellow midfielder Placidus Jn Baptiste and forward Cowan Mathurin (the leading scorer with 14 of his team's 36 goals) Vieux Fort Comprehensive ran away with the 2000 schools' under-nineteen football championship. Their defeat of Bocage Secondary at the Vigie Playing Field was surprisingly hard-fought, with defending champions Vieux Fort ahead by just that Arthur goal at halftime.
    Their second score was fluky, what appeared to be a Jn Baptiste pass going through the legs of the Bocage custodian as he bent over to scoop it up. The third goal, though, was lovely, a corner kick struck high and nodded down by Mathurin on the opposite post. All in all, Vieux Fort dominated play and well deserved their successful title defense.
    Last week, Micoud beat Entrepot Secondary on penalties for the under sixteen schools' football title.

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Run, St. Lucians, In Run Barbados

    (4 December 2000) - A sextet of St. Lucians contested various races as part of the Run Barbados road-running series last weekend. Former winner Victor Ledgers ended third in the half-marathon with a time of 1:14:33 (the course was long, so times were a bit slower than would be expected) with Wayne St. Ange of Roadbusters five places and nearly seven minutes back, and Anthony Neptune (18th, 1:29:56) rounding out the St. Lucian participation in a race won by Benedict Ballantyne of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
    Benedict's brother, Pamenos, won the marathon. Roadbusters coach and former public relations officer of the Amateur Athletics Association, Anthony Debeauville was also entered in that event. Juliana Actie was the first Caribbean woman across the finish line in the 10K, ending fourth overall.

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