Great Artina of Maryland County, have bowed off the LFA 3rd Division Regional Playoff after losing their second match at the Antoinette Tubman Stadium in Monrovia to New Hope.
The southeastern champions lost to New Hope of Margibi County 2-1. While New Hope needs a win to meet Muscat FC to get to the next level of the tournament, the Gibi boys beat Lofa and Maryland champions.
In game two at the Antoinette Tubman Stadium, the champions of Monrovia and the Central Region Muscat FC fell to the Champions of North Central Region Karlu FC 2-0 in a match they could have won in the first 30 minutes of the game.
Muscat FC undefeated pace in the ongoing Liberia Football Association (LFA) National Third Division playoff came to an end at the Antoinette Tubman Stadium (ATS) in Central Monrovia. Karlu FC struggled for form as Muscat mounted serious pressure, but the Lofa County Third Division Club was very solid in defense.
Both sides kept spectators biting their fingers and jerking in their seats, but the Lofa County team which has caught the attention of some officials of the county like Representative Eugene Fallah Kpakpar failed to impress at kickoff.
However, goalkeeper Sekou Sheriff could be credited as the man of the match as he made numerous outstanding catches to keep Karlu supporters cheering. Muscat under the guidance of former Fatu FC Coach Obediah Gbeh, had a lion's share of the ball possession, but the physically potent Karlu FC was not deterred by their ability to push the ball around.
Isaac Mardeh's powerful shot was sent out for a corner kick in the 23rd minute. Mardeh collected a Vessilee Subah's pass and wasted no time with a firing shot, but goal keeper Sekou Sheriff denied him the opportunity. Muscat's fight for goal did not materialize up to the end of the first half with Lassana Sonnie failing to send his side ahead in the 44th minute.
Lassana grabbed a Mitchell Bobwilliam's connection from outside the 22-yard, but he dropped the ball straight in the arms of the Karlu shot stopper. The Lofa County well supported club bounced back in the second half, scoring in the 58th minute. Losene Kamara sent Karlu FC ahead from the penalty spot after Amara Kabbah was brought down in the six-yard by Zubah Karmazu.
Muscat came back very strong, but again could not just create a single goal after several glaring chances. Amara Kabbah sealed the win in the 80th minute with a feeble shot. The forceful striker collected a Lassana Sannoh's left wing volley, before sending the ball at the far right of goal keeper Morlik Keita, who was on holiday up to the 80th minute.
The defeat dashed Muscat's hope of securing a place in the second division, meaning they will have to beat New Hope with maximum goals in the last match this Friday. Muscat defeated Great Artina FC of Maryland County and needed just a win to secure a place in the second Division. The victory also means well for Karlu as a win against Great Artina in the last pairing may also determine their second division ambition.