SAN ANTONIO, Texas – Jamaica (1W-2D-0L, 5 points) and El Salvador (1-1-1, 4) sealed places in the 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup quarterfinals after playing to a 1-1 draw on Sunday at the Alamodome.
The result guaranteed the Jamaicans a top two finish in Group C, while El Salvador can finish no worse than as one of the top-two, third-place sides from the three-group competition. Jamaica can still finish first in the group, but Mexico (1-1-0, 4) would need to lose to last-place Curacao (0-0-2, 0) later in the evening.
El Salvador took a 1-0 lead in the 15th minute, when Ruben Mayorquin picked up possession on the left wing and – while shifting towards the middle – slipped a splendid pass to Nelson Bonilla, who was unmarked at the upper-left of the box. The forward raced closer to the net, held off a Damion Lowe challenge and beat goalkeeper Andre Blake with a left-shot from four-yards out into the far-side netting.
In the 39th minute, with his Jamaican side down 1-0, defender Alvas Powell ventured down the right wing in a bid to create something offensively. After gaining separation, he whipped in a cross that Romario Williams was able to reach. His effort, however, was denied by El Salvador goalkeeper Derby Carrillo at the right post.
The Reggae Boyz equalized in the 64th minute as Darren Mattocks converted from the penalty after Narciso Orellana was judged to have handled Je-Vaughn Watson’s right-footed attempt. It was Mattocks’ fourth goal in his last five Gold Cup games, extending his team record.
Jamaica, the 2015 runner-up, is now unbeaten in seven of its last eight games in the competition. El Salvador earned a quarterfinal berth for the fifth time in 10 attempts.