MASERU — Two late goals by Ralekoti Mokhahlane handed LCS 2-0 win over pacesetters, Bantu.
Bantu drops to second position behind Lioli who beat Joy 3-0 in the other league match played in Teyateyaneng yesterday.
The loss was the second successive for the Caswell Moru’s side which lost to LDF a fortnight ago.
Before that 1-0 loss to the army side Bantu had gone for a 13-match unbeaten run.
Bantu suffered a huge blow five minutes before half time when star defender Thapelo Mokhehle was given a red card for retaliating against crude tackle from Lieta Lehloka.
Reduced to ten men, Bantu had to spend the last 50 minutes of the game defending.
Matters were already bad in that the Mafeteng side had gone into the match without the services of the injured duo of their top goal scorer, Litšepe Marabe and top striker Dlomo Monaphathi.
Mpho Matsinyane, given a rare start in the absence of Monaphathi, was the main culprit in front of goals as the lanky striker blew away a number of good goal scoring chances created by his team.
Perhaps encouraged by their one-man advantage, LCS came back with renewed vigour after a goalless first half.
Bantu introduced youngster, Teboho Molotsi who came in for Thabiso Mahapi as they searched for the opening goal.
Fullback Mohapi Ntobo and Mosiuoa Boseka playing in defensive roles were also sacrificed for attacking players in search of goals
The changes did not have any impact as the Correctional Services side gained the upper hand and looked the better team until the end of the game.
Bantu goal keeper, Daniel Jousse, pulled a good save from a Tšeliso Khali’s shot to keep his team in the game on the 60th minute.
Veteran attacking midfielder, Thulo Rachobe, was introduced in the last 15 minutes and immediately made an impact as the Correctional side looked the more dangerous of the two teams towards the end.
But the match looked headed for a goalless draw when in the 86th minute Bantu lost concentration in defence and allowed LCS playmaker, Mokhahlane to score the opening goal from a close range.
The midfield maestro was at it again two minutes later when he notched his second goal of the match.
Bantu captain, Tlali Maile, told the Sunday Express in the post match interviews that the red card to Thapelo Mokhele in the first half of the game gave LCS the upper hand.
“We suffered a red card very early in the game and from there we struggled to keep pace with the defending league champions,” Maile said.
“We won’t give up on the championship because we still have a game in hand.
Maile said the absence of Monaphathi and their top goal scorer, Marabe also worked negatively against them.
“They are two quality regular players in the team and their absence played a big part today,” said Maile.
“It’s not over until it is over and we will fight until the last day of the championship,” he said.
Elsewhere, Lioli registered a 3-0 win over Joy to move to the top of the Vodacom premier league table with a two point advantage over Bantu.