The top team of the United Football League (UFL), Ceres-La Salle, kept their powerhouse performance intact with a 7-0 win against UST FC on Saturday, August 15, at the Rizal Memorial Football Stadium. With the win, Ceres-La Salle grabs the third quarter finals spot in the UFL Cup
The Tigers pounced on the chance during the initial minutes of the match, as they took control of the ball. A foul occurred for Ceres forward Ceres Marañon, which gave way to a chance goal for UST, by Fidel Kue. His kick however, flew over the net. UST remained composed at the eighth minute, even when Ceres tredged through to their side; with their defenders hovering over Ceres’ attacks. It wasn’t long until the away team masterfully made their first goal. Coming from a corner kick by Jeffrey Christiaens to an assist from Patrick Reichelt, Ceres forward Bienvenido Marañon then tapped the ball into net with ease.
The first goal of the match gave Ceres an added boost to attack further, which shook UST defense on the alert. Open chances were given to Ceres through their corner kicks starting at the 14th minute; but it did not faze UST goalkeeper Jose Zaldy Abraham from keeping their stronghold intact from such attacks. What followed was UST fighting through the Ceres offense at the 20th minute, which opened up space for defender Ronald Batisla-Ong to shoot a long ball, only for the shot to go over the net.
The Bacolod-based squad may have slightly struggled to get easy shots from UST; but they broke through and extended their lead in the first half at the 42nd minute thanks to Marañon, through a string of passes coming from Reichelt. The whistle for the first half was sounded, and the score was 2-0.
The second half was the start of Ceres’ scoring onslaught, but the Tigers knew better than to surrender. First of which, came from striker Lee Jeong Woo, who took advantage of a miscommunication between custodian Abraham and his teammate, and gently tapped in the ball for Ceres, 3-0. While the team from España were recovering from the mishap. Lee then decided to make a brace, and charged his way through for another goal for Ceres. Forward Steven Anotado took the initiative and made attempts to a counter. However, it was a struggle to post a goal for UST due to Ceres’ tough defensive line.
The away team picked up the pace and moved in close to goal territory. Despite Abraham’s strong defensive efforts, The team from Bacolod utilized their assisted plays to grab two more goals from Reichelt, off passes from Okunaiya and Lee starting at the 61st minute. At the 75th minute, Ceres rallied around the opponent’s side of the turf; however their shots were either close attempts, or parried by the Tiger defense.
Unfortunately, the final goal of the match deterred the fiery chain of goals, as it was an unintentional own goal inside the UST net. Ceres were relentless with their attempts, but UST battled it out when Abraham footsaved a shot from Ceres defender Jalsor Soriano at the 90th minute. After injury time, the match concluded with a 7-0 in favor of Ceres.
The Negrense team will face the winner between Green Archers United (GAU) FC and Agila FC that will be held on August 18, Tuesday.
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