Lady Booters hapless against a much-improved UP team

A three-goal deficit with just an hour of football left to play was just too much for the Lady Booters to overcome as the resurgent UP Lady Maroons avenged their opening-day defeat to La Salle with a 3-1 win on the last day of the UAAP Women’s Football elimination round.
Despite falling on the wrong end of a 3-0 score line, the Lady Booters could have even scored three goals themselves if not for a mix of bad luck and superb defending by the Lady Maroons. Megan Diaz had a couple of good chances but both attempts were ill-struck. Fellow sophomore Regine Metillo hit the frame of the goal in the dying minutes of the first half—a period when the girls from Diliman made it a lot difficult for DLSU.
If La Salle squandered their chances, the girls from UP did not. Improving drastically after the appointment of Anto Gonzales as their coach, they deservedly took the lead in the 16th minute with Mary Obra putting the ball on the far post of Inna Palacios’ goal as the La Salle keeper went forward and attempted to narrow the shot’s angle. UP was pressing the La Salle back line moments before the first goal and they kept on doing so. Still, the Lady Booters kept on pushing for an equalizer with one of Diaz’s chances coming in between the two UP goals in the first half. The second goal came from Molly Manalansan who fired a scorching shot that went beyond Palacios’ reach.
In the second half, UP and La Salle played end-to-end football but both defences stood firm for the first ten minutes. Unfortunately for the girls in green, UP scored their third via Kali Huff who coolly picked her spot as she was left alone with only Palacios to beat. The Malditas custodian was helpless as the former Poveda standout made no mistake from around 10 yards, putting UP comfortably ahead 3-0.
Five minutes later, the Lady Booters’ persistence on the attacking end rewarded them with a goal. Rookie Nicole Andaya headed the ball in off Diaz’s corner to give her team a glimmer of hope of nabbing at least a draw. But it was not to be the Lady Booters’ day as UP held on to seal a 3-1 win and send Coach Hans Smit’s ladies down to fifth place.
Lady Booters captain Adrianne Yniguez had an emotional day as she played her last 90 minutes with the team she was part of for five years. The only surviving member of DLSU’s last UAAP-winning side, Yniguez has been thankful for her colorful UAAP career. “I can tell everyone that I went through it all. Not all athletes can say that,” tells Yniguez who has been a champion, a beaten finalist twice, and a member of a team that finished at the bottom in her time with the Lady Booters. “I’m bummed to have finished in last place but I am thankful that I can take this with me later on. After football in La Salle, I can say that I’m a much stronger person,” she utters with fulfillment.
Coach Hans Smit, meanwhile, cannot help but express his frustration on his team’s paltry performance this season. This was the first time since the inception of women’s football in the UAAP that the Lady Booters ended in last place. “I’m just glad that it’s over,” said La Salle’s long-time mentor.
Both teams were already knocked out of finals contention prior to kick-off.

Green Booters’ title bid bruised following stumble against UP


Skipper Gio Diamante’s goal in the 24th minute was insufficient for the Green Booters to bag neither their fifth win of the season nor the third straight stalemate as the UP Fighting Maroons bagged three goals in a 1-3 defeat that stalled La Salle’s chances of booking a twice-to-beat berth in the UAAP Season 76 Men’s Football Tournament Sunday morning at the FEU-Diliman Football Field.

One was not enough

The elder Diamante punched his side in front, using his head to guide Jhoguev Ybanez’s cross toward the goal 24 minutes into the match. The lead did not last long for UP’s Fe Baya levelled the game nine minutes after the Davaoeno’s breakthrough goal. It was a see-saw affair until Nicko Villlacin was given marching orders for what seemed to be a soft foul on UP star striker Jinggoy Valmayor in the 74th minute. On another day, Villacin would have been given the benefit of the doubt but it did not prove to be a lucky day for him. Two yellow cards in one game for Villacin, who was also booked for a foul in the first half, reduced the Green Booters to ten men and also gifted the Maroons a chance to go ahead.

Indeed, UP took the lead as Valmayor, a former LSGH wonder kid, made no mistake from 12 yards. In a match of 10 vs 11, defending was made difficult in the latter stages of the game for the Green Booters. Nonetheless, they showed grit by going for an equalizer but the Maroon defense was sturdy enough to hold on. Instead, UP ended up on the scoresheet, capitalizing on a man advantage and erased all doubts of their win after UP’s Aguilar knocked a goal in to cushion the Iskos’ lead right before the final whistle.

Despite the defeat, La Salle goalkeeper Joshua Cruz was not entirely frustrated with the team’s performance. “The team played okay up until the penalty call and that changed our momentum by a lot. [In a situation where we are] a man down and a goal down is pretty hard to come back from. The team played well but we just could not convert until that last minute when they slipped in the last attempt.”

With league-leading FEU and a nothing-to-lose NU team – who recently had their playoff chances wiped out following defeat against the Tamaraws – Cruz and company are definitely aware of the danger the team still has to overcome. “I guess we just have to learn from our mistakes—that’s the important thing. We have a week to fix what we really messed up today,” added Cruz.

Grueling race to the playoffs

La Salle currently shares third place with UST, both having 14 points with the Taft XI narrowly ahead on goal difference. UE is in fifth with only two points behind DLSU and UST at 12. Defending champions Ateneo, resting at the bottom of the standings, are still in the running for a playoff spot but would need to win all three of their remaining matches plus hope that only one among DLSU, UE, and UST would reach 15 points or more for them to make it to the Final Four.

As the team would strive to string a couple of good results for them to qualify for the semi-finals and not just to keep their hopes of snagging a precious twice-to-beat advantage, Cruz deems it important for the team to reignite a philosophy they’ve had last October in Bacolod. “[For us to get] our UNIGames mentality wherein we really wanted to win it, the mentality in which ‘they aren’t going through me’ [and] the ‘I will not surrender’ mentality [prevailed, is vital],” the 20-year old custodian ended with conviction.


Early goal insufficient as UST comeback trips Lady Booters


The DLSU Lady Booters’ campaign suffered a major blow after their second straight defeat in a 3-1 loss to UST Sunday afternoon in the resumption of UAAP Season 76 women’s football tournament at the Moro Lorenzo Field in Ateneo, Quezon City.

Off a throw-in, Cha Guancia found the back of the net in the seventh minute of the match but the UST XI regrouped and just within ten minutes after falling a goal behind, the Tigresses pounced on a couple of lapses by goalkeeper Erika Turtur to swing the advantage to their favour. Both teams were aggressive in attack but chances went either too soft or too wide to alter the score line. UST kept on fending off a series of resurging La Salle attacks before the halftime whistle.

The Lady Booters kept on searching for the much-needed equalizer as Kyla Inquig and Ange Metillo powered shots that were unfortunately stopped by UST’s number one. In the 81st minute, a defensive lapse at the halfway line provided a Tigress an opportunity. She sprinted towards La Salle’s goal before nonchalantly slotting the ball to the right bottom corner of Turtur’s onion bag.

La Salle faced a tougher climb and with just less than nine minutes left, the Lady Booters were left empty-handed once again and had to settle for another frustrating result. Coach Hans Smit could not find the words to describe his disappointment of his team. A possible return of starting goalkeeper Inna Palacios is still unsure but her non-participation in next week’s game was confirmed by Smit. Nonetheless, all is not lost for the Lady Booters who are just four points adrift of a championship slot. The ladies in Green-and-White are due to face rivals Ateneo on the 19th of January, 1:00 pm at the Moro Lorenzo Field.

Undermanned Green Booters earn draw with struggling Ateneo

Despite missing key players, the Green Booters dominated the match against archrivals Ateneo but were unfortunate not to take maximum points following a thrilling 0-0 second round encounter in the ongoing UAAP Season 76 men’s football tournament at Moro Lorenzo Field in Ateneo, Quezon City Sunday afternoon.
The result kept La Salle in third place with 13 points, just two points behind second-ranked UP who also defeated league-leading FEU 3-0 on the same day.
The visiting team had plenty of good chances but was betrayed by poor finishing down the attacking third. Ateneo, meanwhile, also racked up a number of good opportunities but were all quelled by the La Salle defense. Both goalkeepers had stellar outings as they went on to deny every attacking spell produced by either team.
Goal-scoring opportunities were well-scattered throughout the game but a terrific exchange late in the game almost brought one of the competing squads to victory. From just outside the box, Carl Amisola curled a shot wide that had Oracion outstretched in the 79th minute. On a counter-attack four minutes later, Mikko Mabanag almost drilled Ateneo ahead with a shooting chance from just inside 18 yards. Greggy Yang, Gerald Layumas and Jhoguev Ybanez were all there to make sure that the ball would not bother Joshua Cruz. Just a minute after, the Diamante brothers alongside Amisola were threatening to score the breakthrough goal and with the ball landing on Jojo Borromeo, the hosts’ defense successfully cleared the impending danger.
Two minutes from time, Borromeo won a free-kick in a dangerous position. Yang’s ensuing free kick has beaten Oracion but had just sailed a little over the crossbar. Ateneo then went on a quick counter with Yu Murayama winning the ball inside La Salle’s half. Noticing the unmarked Acosta, Murayama slid the ball toward the former but Layumas was just in the right place to cut the pass and send the ball into La Salle’s attacking third. Ateneo’s Mabanag had another go at Cruz’s goal but the La Salle number one recovered the ball after initially spilling it. Fortunately for him, there was no Blue Booter near where the ball went.
Substitute Jose Montelibano had a chance to lurk deep inside Ateneo’s box but his lead pass was cut off by Ateneo. In the last minute, Mabanag’s corner kick was gathered by Cruz and immediately sent the ball to skipper Gio Diamante, who was onside. The elder Diamante gained a couple of steps ahead of his marker before whipping a potential game-winner only for it to sail over the bar. That went on to be the game’s last chance as the referee signalled the end of the game with neither team hitting the score sheet.
Coach Hans Smit was critical of his team’s finishing in the game. Cruz followed up, “We all know that there’s still room for improvement. Hopefully we get to the point that we do our best. We already know what to focus on but I think we need a little more time to work on it.”
Crocked players Nate Alquiros, brothers Al and Sabin Bustamante, and Nace Gonzales were all missing due to injuries and given a day-to-day assessment of their problems, none of them are assured of playing the Green Booters’ next game against UE on Thursday, January 16, 3:00 pm at the FEU-Diliman Field.

Green Booters take down Blue Booters, streak hits three


When all hope seems lost, never doubt the power of the Animo.

The DLSU Green Booters stunned the Ateneo Blue Booters, the defending men’s football champions, in their 2-1 win last December 15 at the FEU Diliman Football Field.

“I’m happy with the result. I think that the team played well. We were dominating the game both the first and second half,” said Joshua Cruz after the game.

After trailing 0-1, the Green Booters finally notched their first goal and the equalizer as Gelo Diamente punched in at the 78th minute to knot the score at 1-1.

“We kept pushing and pressuring Ateneo. The chances came and finally the goal came after a lot of shots,” shared Diamante.

Ateneo would later employ a series of attacks and tactics but the La Salle defense was enough to deny them of scoring a goal.

As time was running low, both teams played with a more sense of urgency as they exchanged as series of strong but neither of which failed to score.

However, La Salle would break the dry spell as Alfredo Bustamante scored a goal at the 94th minute off Greggy Yang’s free kick to seal the deal for the Green Booters.

“Before Yang took that freekick, I was already thinking of ways how I could put the ball in,” Bustamante added about his goal.

With this win, the Green Booters now ride a three-game winning streak but the team will face its tough challenge yet as they’re set to face the still undefeated FEU Tamaraws this coming Friday, December 20, at the FEU Diliman football field.


Green Booters slip, Lady Booters gain ground on opening week

The DLSU Football Teams had contrasting starts in this season’s UAAP Football Tournament as the men dropped points in the 0-2 defeat to UST while the women edged past UP, 2-1. Both games were held at the FEU-Diliman Football Field in Quezon City.

Saturday was a bad day for Coach Hans Smit and the Green Booters as ace striker Gelo Diamante was ruled out because of dengue. Furthermore, they were on the wrong end of a 2-0 result. Jogi Celiz capitalized on the defensive lapse of DLSU in the fourth minute of the match to put the Gold-and-Black ahead, 1-0. La Salle then dominated the proceedings but was not able to find an equalizing goal by halftime.

Things were similar in the second half. Jojo Borromeo and Nathan Alquiros produced opportunities with Alquiros’ striking the woodwork a couple of times. Unfortunately, Patrick O’Neill’s shot in the 81st minute went beyond DLSU goalkeeper Joshua Cruz to double UST’s advantage. There was still time for La Salle to snatch a result but the Thomasian defense stood firm to deny the DLSU XI any chances of spoiling their win.

The following day, Smit’s lady wards drew a 2-1 victory over relentless UP. Things started beautifully for last year’s first runners-up. Rookie forward Kyra Dimaandal pounced on the rebound off a saved attempt by Cha Guancia. The lead did not get to last by halftime though as UP’s Kali Navea-Huff poked the ball in. It appeared that Inna Palacios already had control of the ball but the sophomore goalkeeper lost grip after colliding with two UP players. Nonetheless, the referee saw no malicious contact; thus ruling the goal legal.

In the second half, Erika Turtur stepped up her game as she replaced Palacios. The Davaoena keeper was alert in stopping a number of UP shots all throughout the half. The same can be said of the UP defense, which clamped down La Salle’s attacking spells. It all boiled down to a 91st minute free kick by Negrense Ange Metillo. After failing to register a goal last season, the ace midfielder struck a wonderfully-arched, game-winning shot to give the Lady Booters the lead with just three minutes left.

The two teams will look for nothing but three points in the upcoming midweek clashes. The Green Booters would aim to bounce back against an improved UE side on Tuesday while the Lady Booters are in the quest of their second win when they square off with rivals UST. Both games have 3PM kickoffs and will be held at FEU-Diliman.