El Salvador's Fernando Castillo (right) celebrates after scoring against Bermuda in a CONCACAF Under-20 Championship match on February 22, 2017, in san Jose, Costa Rica. (Photo: Carlos Borbon/Straffon Images)
SAN JOSE, Costa Rica – El Salvador (2W-0D-0L, 6 points) earned a berth in the classification stage of the 2017 CONCACAF Under-20 Championship with a game to spare after topping Bermuda, 3-1, on Wednesday at the Estadio Nacional.
The top two teams from each of the three groups will progress to the next round. With the first-place Salvadorans having maximum points from two games, only one other team in the Group C can equal or surpass the six-point mark -- either Trinidad & Tobago (0-1-0, 1) or host Costa Rica (0-0-1, 0), which will meet later in the evening.
Like he did against Costa Rica on Sunday, Roberto Dominguez scored El Salvador’s opening goal on a clever play in the 21st minute. From the left side of the box, Marvin Marquez delivered a cross along the ground that Josue Santos dummied through his legs. Dominguez lunged with his right foot at the top of the six-yard box and jabbed the ball past goalkeeper Detre Bell.
Marquez notched a second assist in the 65th minute, when he slipped a feed to Fernando Castillo, who took a touch into the box and fired a right-footed shot into the right side of the net from 16-yards out to make it 2-0.
Two minutes later, Josue Rivera extended El Salvador’s lead, bringing down Castillo’s first-timed cross from the left to drill a right-footed shot off the diving Bell from 14-yards out.
Bermuda struck for a consolation in the 75th minute that could prove to be the goal of the tournament. Osagi Bascome sent a free kick into the right side of the box for Mazhye Burchall. In a fluid movement, the 19-year-old kept the ball in the air with his right foot, turned and snapped off a right-footed shot into the net from nine yards.
Despite the loss, the Bermudians are still in contention for a place in the next round.