Hard Knocks FC began their quest for championship honours in the 2014 Lendore Village Football League with a 3-1 win over Jordan Trace at the Chrissie Terrace Recreation Ground in Enterprise in the second fixture of Sunday’s opening day double-header.

Presenting a star studded line-up featuring the likes of former national strikers Stern John and Hector Sam, Hard Knocks went ahead as early as the sixth minute when speedy forward Kerron Smith beat former Presentation College Chaguanas goalkeeper Anthony County with a neat left-footed finish.

Midfielder Brandon Simpson made it 2-0 twenty minutes later when he picked up a loose ball about 25 metres out and blasted a fierce left-footed drive that flew past County, deflected off the inside of the upright and settled at the back of the net.

Jamal Lucas thought he had given his team a 3-0 advantage when he raced onto a defence-splitting pass in the 39th minute and placed the ball through the legs of the advancing County. But his effort was nullified by the flag of the assistant referee that signalled he was offside.

Second half action saw Jordan Trace being more aggressive offensively but not capitalising on the chances they created.

Kyle David failed to convert in the 54th minute after Glenwill John did well to evade his marker down the left flank and square the ball back to his teammate who was unmarked in front of goal. David, however, managed to hook his effort over the crossbar with only goalkeeper Andre Marchan to beat.

But Glenwill John’s tenacity would eventually lead to Jordan Trace opening their account. He raced into the area in the 62nd minute and was impeded on his way to goal, prompting referee Rodphin Harris to award a penalty. Akim Marshall converted the ensuing spot kick to reduce the deficit.

Any hopes of a comeback were quickly laid to rest in the 72nd minute when Sam reacted quickly to a rebound off County to hit a one-time shot into the back of the net.

In the opening game, Sangre Grande-based Cool It FC had to twice come from behind to earn a 2-2 draw in their battle with 1st Engineering Battalion.