Onrubio game-winner prolongs FEU’s momentum with 2-1 victory
The Far Eastern University Lady Tamaraws are enjoying an undefeated run since the end of the UAAP season, with their latest win coming off collegiate rivals University of the Philippines Lady Maroons.
The Lady Maroons actually led first, after a counterattack led by BG Sta. Clara resulted in a 26th minute goal.
Before the half ended, however, Jovelle Sudaria fired a shot from way outside the box that was too strong for keeper Vanessa Estrada.
After restart, FEU sought the go-ahead goal, and they found it fourteen minutes later when some nifty wing play prompted Mary Lam to sprint forward. Lam struck the ball just inside the box before Estrada could reach her, and it looked like it was on its way into the net when Joyce Onrubia tapped it in for insurance.
FEU actually could have scored more if not for the goalpost getting in the way or their overcooking their shots. Coach Glaiza Artus noted this.
“Yung control, touches inside the box. Kailangan finish talaga sa goal. Actually yung isang problem ay late kasi mag-react sa bola. Like meron kanina na dapat sure goal na pero late kasi nag-react, nag-over pa,” she assessed, with emphasis on her team’s struggles in converting opportunities.
“Hindi kasi mentally ready eh. Alam nila, nasa proper position pero yung action laging late. So ngayon at least kahit papaano improving siya, pero kulang pa rin,” Artus added, hoping the Lady Tamaraws improve further before their last fixture for the round against the Younghusband FA next weekend.
Cadag’s hat-trick, Lustan’s brace power UST over Hiraya FC, 5-1
The University of Santo Tomas Lady Booters were looking to overturn a 1-2 record since the UAAP and they were halfway through the bid after their emphatic win over club team Hiraya FC.
The Lady Booters opened the scoring inside 16 minutes after Shelah Mae Cadag locked on to Hazel Lustan’s long-range delivery.
Seven minutes later it was Lustan’s turn to score after a deft pass from Charisa Lemoran.
Cadag would complete a hat-trick in quick succession minutes before halftime, starting with a top-of-the-box shot in the 41st minute, followed by an unopposed breakaway run two minutes later.
Hiraya FC tried to salvage what they could from a game dominated by their younger and fitter opponents. They managed to pull one back with Natasha Alquiros’ free kick goal some five minutes into the second half.
Tired legs betrayed them, however, as the backline let Lustan pass for another goal in the 83rd minute to end the match 5-1 to UST.
Cadag relished her team’s win, glad that it also meant her team will improve in the standings.
“Mas confident na yung team kaya [aangat]. Pinagisipan po namin na dapat hindi kami magse-settle sa baba. So dapat kailangan step-by-step aangat kami,” she shared.
Not only is she happy that they have offset their losing record since the UAAP, Cadag apparently scored her first ever hat-trick too.
“Kasi iba-iba yung position ko. Actually sinasabi sa akin at sa team ni coach na dapat lahat na position alam kung paano laroin. So yun napagisipan ko na kaya naman lahat laruin. So parang grinab ko yung opportunity [tuwing nasa] wing, striker, defense,” she added, explaining why the feat was such a pleasant surprise for her.
The match was also the ninth game for Hiraya FC, which means they have played their last fixture for the round. They finish the first round with 10 points and are in sixth place.
Six unanswered goals keep La Salle on course for first round sweep
The De La Salle University breezed through yet another match when they faced bottom-dwellers Fuego Espanya.
Kyra Dimaandal, who has an active streak by scoring in every league game she has featured in, drew first blood for La Salle yet again, with a 58-second goal no less.
Two minutes later, DLSU had doubled their lead with a flashy far-post zinger from Nicole Andaya.
The deluge didn’t stop, as the Lady Archers scored their third goal after a further six minutes when goalie Diana Rose Redondo failed to secure the ball, causing Dimaandal to snatch it away before passing to a nearby Kyla Inquig.
La Salle gave Fuego Espanya no room to breathe, as they scored their fourth goal six minutes later, when an overlapping Mary Cristine Duran made a low pass into the box to Chelo Hodges, who easily converted.
Seven minutes more and it was another goal, this time assisted by Irish Navaja, which Dimaandal headed in.
In the 36th minute, Inquig scored the second brace of the match with a lofty effort from the top of the box that nearly grazed the crossbar.
Fuego Espanya barely made it to the other side of the pitch, but found a way to redeem themselves when they denied the Taft squad any more goals in the second half.
This didn’t seem to bother DLSU’s usually meticulous coach much.
“We did what we [could] in the first half only. Second half, I had to make some adjustments so I let the other players in, [gave them] opportunity, gave them playing time. They didn’t do so bad. It’s a good thing that we already put six in the first half because this is a league, we need to score as much as possible, show no mercy because there are no finals or semis,” remarked Hans-Peter Smit.
He said he was aware that Fuego Espanya were going to play a more defensive game in the second half and had instructions ready.
“Nothing to take away from Fuego, they adjusted, I knew they were going to but these players they are just human, so no matter what you say, sometimes they will make mistakes. But it’s okay, no big problem. They proved naman that they can play eh, rusty lang as you can see,” Smit observed, referring to the two weeks La Salle was idle.
“Sometimes in football that’s what happens, you tend to lose patience when you’re completely dominating the match. As you can see [Erika] Turtur never touched the ball, it hardly crossed the halfline. Pero okay lang yan, at least we still got three points. It will be a different story if we didn’t,” a more reserved Smit added.
La Salle will next face Green Archers United FC, who are currently the second-best team in the league. For Smit, it will be an interesting match considering it’s a team he also manages, but he wants his UAAP team to come out on top and keep the sweep alive.
“I want to make a record of sorts for women’s football, I mean we’re what, on an 17 or 18-game winning streak? We haven’t lost since we started the women’s league. So how many teams can say that much about themselves right?”
UST outmuscles UP to close out first round strong, 5-2
The last fixture featured two teams that played back-to-back games, and it was UST that survived the rigors of a tightened schedule, overpowering UP 5-2.
UP went ahead within 22 minutes after BG Sta. Clara was fouled inside the box. Sta. Clara squared up for the spot kick, hit the post but put away the rebound.
UST cancelled out the Lady Maroons’ lead after a free-kick situation was duly converted by Hazel Lustan eight minutes later.
Three minutes into the second half, the Lady Booters from España gained the upper hand after Charisa Lemoran somehow scored with so many defenders descending on her inside the box.
UP fought hard for an equalizer, which they earned through Sta. Clara again after she outran her defenders in the 50th minute.
But UST were determined to get the win, grabbing the lead again after a looping half-volley by Jan Cleofe in the 61st minute from a Lemoran cross.
Eight minutes later, Lemoran and Lustan teamed up to increase their lead by two. Lustan later put the match away with a breakaway goal in injury time.
UST have now won three straight games since losing two and tactician Aging Rubio was pleased with the outcome.
“Masaya lang dahil nakabawi kami dun sa two straight losses namin. Maganda naman yung pinapakita ng mga bata which is yun naman talaga yung goal namin, i-try namin manalo every time na naglaro kami,” she said.
The UAAP finalists are now in third after nine games (15 points) and carry great momentum going into the second round. But Rubio isn’t too concerned with their position yet, instead choosing to take things one game at a time.
“Hindi naman kasi namin pa iniisip yung rankings dahil meron pang second round pero masaya na rin. Ang goal lang talaga is manalo every game pero kung umangat din rankings namin then mas maganda, yun lang yun,” she added.
UP have also played their last match for the first round but have unfortunately dropped into the bottom half of the table in eighth place with 9 points.
The PFF Women’s League continues this weekend at Rizal Memorial Stadium.
On Saturday, July 1, two matches are lined up: FEU (4) vs. TYFA (9) at 8:00 a.m., ADMU (6) vs. Fuego Espanya (10) at 10:30 a.m.
On Sunday, July 2, there will be two games: OutKast FC (5) vs. ADMU (6) at 8:00 a.m., GAU FC (2) vs. DLSU (1) at 10:30 a.m.
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