Jamaica fight back to draw El Salvador, lock up 2nd in group

AP Photo/Eric Gay
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Jamaica’s passage into the quarterfinals of the 2017 Gold Cup had already been secured — and it’s a good thing — a full 24 hours before their Group C finale against El Salvador, but the Reggae Boyz entered the Alamodome in San Antonio, Tex., with plenty still at stake.

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After falling behind to Nelson Bonilla’s opening goal in the 15th minute, Winfried Schafer’s battled, and labored, for the remaining 75 minutes.

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50 minutes would pass before the equalizer arrived, rescued on a penalty kick converted by Darren Mattocks. The draw is enough to elevate El Salvador into one of two best-place third-place slots, and secure their place in the quarterfinals, alongside Jamaica, Mexico and five other nations.

Up next for El Salvador, it’s a quarterfinal matchup with the U.S. national team on Wednesday, in Philadelphia, Penn. As for Jamaica, their next opponent will be determined by the outcome of Mexico’s finale against Curacao later on Sunday. A Mexican win or (scoring) draw would clinch top spot for El Tri, setting up Jamaica versus Canada; a Mexican loss would hand the group to Jamaica, and they would face Honduras.