• Thursday Jun 01, 2017

    Jamaica’s Lawrence inspired by late grandmother, excels for NYRB

    Jamaica international Kemar Lawrence (white jersey) has started in each of his 56 games for the New York Red Bulls in Major League Soccer. (Photo: Mexsport)

    HARRISON, N.J. — Everything that Kemar Lawrence accomplishes on the soccer field, he does for Norma Seymour, his late grandmother.

    Seymour passed away in March at 60. Since then, the Jamaica international has played the best soccer of his three-year career with Major League Soccer’s New York Red Bulls.

    “I have so much anger lately,” said Lawrence, who set up the winning goal in Saturday’s 2-1 victory over the New England Revolution. “I just have to come on game days and express it on the field. Game days you get away from all of that.”

    Lawrence called Seymour his best friend.

    “You can never just put it away,” the defender remarked. “My grandma was my rock, my best friend. She was a person I spoke about every day. It’s weird some days that she’s just not around.

    “Every day I miss her. There still is a space in my life. I pray every day and I just ask God to fill that spot with some joy for me.”

    Lawrence excelled at both ends of the pitch against New England. When he wasn’t dashing down the left flank sending crosses into the area, he was running down the likes of forward Kei Kamara.

    “Kemar has been if not our best player, then one of our best players,” remarked head coach Jesse Marsch. “He’s playing the best he’s ever played.”

    Given his fabulous form, Lawrence is likely in line for a spot on Jamaica’s CONCACAF Gold Cup roster in July.

    “I’m trying to make it to the finals and win this time,” he said of the Reggae Boyz, the 2015 runner-up to Mexico. “I’m away as long as possible.”

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