Guatemala's Francisco Spross Cifuentes (left), in action against Bermuda in a CONCACAF Under-15 Championship semifinal match on August 23, 2013, at the Truman Bodden Sports Complex in George Town, Cayman Islands.
GEORGE TOWN, Cayman Islands – Guatemala and Honduras will meet in the CONCACAF Under-15 Championship final after winning tightly contested semifinal encounters Friday at the Truman Bodden Sports Complex.
The Guatemalans rallied from a one-goal deficit to overcome Bermuda 4-3 on penalty kicks following a 1-1 draw.
Jordan Lambe gave the Bermudians a 33rd minute lead, but Guatemala leveled in the 49th through Francisco Spross Cifuentes, who scored in his fifth consecutive game. It was only the second goal conceded by Bermuda in the competition.
The game went penalty kicks, where the Central American side converted on all four of its attempts, while Bermuda hit its first two and then missed its last two.
“I am very proud of my team,” said Guatemala head coach Juan Manuel Funes. “It was a good match and I’m looking forward to the final.”
In that championship match, Guatemala will square off against Honduras, a 2-1 winner over rival El Salvador. Honduran second-half substitute Italo Ramos got a brace, bookending a Josue Melendez tally. Ramos, who also scored two goals in Honduras’ last group game against Curacao, netted in the 47th and 62nd minutes. Melendez struck in the 61st for his third tally of the competition.
“I feel very special, but although I scored the goals, I must give credit to my team-mates,” said Ramos afterwards. “I worked very hard when I came on as substitute and I am thankful to be rewarded.”
The Guatemala-Honduras tournament finale will take place Sunday, 8:00 p.m. local, also at the Truman Bodden Sports Complex. Bermuda and El Salvador will meet in the match for third place two hours earlier.
2013 CONCACAF Under-15 Championship
Semifinal Man of the Match winners
Esteban Velasquez (Guatemala)
Italo Ramos (Honduras)