Sunday, 20 May 2007 11:15 AM

SOCCER: The National Club Championship begins.

Honiara based clubs made their mark in the opening of the National Club Championship yesterday at the Lawson Tama stadium.

Marist humbled the Avaiki Chiefs 11 - 3. Marist welcomed the Avaiki Chiefs to the big league with three quick goals within the first half. Avaiki pressured the Marist defense and were eventually rewarded with a penalty. Joel Konofilia scored from the penalty box, salvaging some pride for the team. Patrick Miniti brought out his two big guns in the second half proving to be catalyst for their runaway win. Jack Samani and Abraham Iniga showed some excellent precision football outclassing the Avaiki team. Marist scored at will courtesy of its two star strikers, goals piled as the Avaiki defense, well controlled at times, could do little to stop the onslaught. The Chiefs managed to score two more goals through Joel Konofilia before the final whistle. Iniga registered five goals, the highest so far in the competition in just one game. With the service of their two class strikers Marist is making their mark as strong contenders for the club championship.

Koloale proved too strong for Auki Kingz winning the game by 5 - 0. A well spirited Auki Kingz side contained a very classy Koloale outfit in the first half ending the half nil all. Floodgates opened in the second half, but the score line did not reflect the pace and determination displayed by the lads from Auki. Auki Kingz started the first half clearly determined to make an impression. They held Koloale within their territory for much of the first half, pressuring the Koloale defence. While possession was on their side, goals did not eventuate as Koloale defended well. Tinoni Ratu and Benjamin Riki came into the game in the second half and ignited the Koloale attack. Ratu and Riki dazzled the crowd with their pin point accuracy and their 'Brazilian-like' flair. Ratu and Iniga showed to the crowd why they are revered both locally and abroad. Ratu scored two goals, while Iniga scored one. The other two goals came from a set up play by Iniga who was at his best. Koloale is making it known to other Honiara based clubs that they mean business.

Isabel champions Kavota FC were far more composed then their Provincial counterparts despite loosing their match 4 - 2. Kavota FC held the much fancied Kossa FC in much of the first half. Kossa managed to score an opening within the first 15 minutes to which Kavota replied in less then 10 minutes. The game was played with great intensity testing the endurance of both teams. Kossa pushed ahead before half time with two quick goals. Kavota FC came out after the break with a greater sense of urgency to score goals. They pushed Kossa and were eventually rewarded with a goal. Their celebrations were short lived as Kossa scored another goal to seal the win. Despite the loss Kavota FC can hold their head high for matching up with arguably one of the best sides in the Honiara DJ
League.