- May 27, 2022 08:58
The Far Eastern University (FEU) men’s football team dismantled the University of the East (UE), 4-1, to open their season 81 campaign in the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) men’s football tournament, February 17, at the FEU Diliman football field in Quezon City.
After having a rough season last UAAP Season 80, the Tamaraws showed their eagerness to bounce back as they routed UE in their first encounter, courtesy of opening game scorers Jermi Darapan, Gio Pabualan, Dominique Canonigo, and Alex Rayos.
“Our team is covered and patient, and this win made me so happy with how they played. This first game is very important for us to win,” FEU head coach Bobae Park beamed.
Early in the match, both teams started off with a slow-paced scheme and UE was given a chance to get on board but Mar Diano failed to strike a score against FEU. Straight away from that attempt, at the 29th minute mark, rookie Darapan drew the first blood in the match, 1-0.
The heat inside the highly-physical game continues to boil as FEU yielded UE its second chance via a penalty kick, which still missed.
Coming into the 40th minute in the 80-minute-long match, FEU was already in full control with their offense as they dominated UE’s game plan. Despite their dominance, the Tamaraws had to cope up with their undermanned, 16-player line-up.
“Actually, we only have 16 players so I made a plan and I needed more strong men so I had to let Gio Pabualan play in the second half,” Park stated.
As nine minutes passed by into the second half, the former UAAP juniors division Most Valuable Player (MVP), Pabualan, introduced his name in the seniors division after scoring a header to give FEU a 2-0 lead against the Red Warriors.
“Sobrang saya lang kasi kahit na pressured ako bago pumasok sa laro, hindi ko hinayaan i-down ako nung pressure ko. Kumbaga mas iniisip ko [na] excited ako. Tsaka kailangan ko mag-contribute sa team kasi 1-0 is not enough para manalo kami (I just feel so happy even though I am pressured before entering the game. I did not let myself lose over the pressure. Instead, I thought of how excited I am. I really need to contribute because having a score of 1-0 is not really enough for us to win),” Pabualan shared.
On the other side, exactly at the 51st mark, the rookie Champ Marin finally placed UE on the board, 1-2.
As the Red Warriors committed an infraction, the Tamaraws maintained their momentum to score 3-1 after Dominique Canonigo took the advantage from a penalty kick in the 60th mark of the match.
The Tamaraws continued to dominate the Red Warriors as Alex Rayos tallied his name on sheets at the 66th minute mark and provided FEU a breathing room. Moreover, the Red Warriors had multiple chances to strike but goalkeeper Dave Parac have managed to keep the ball in his hands as the last line of defense.
The Tamaraws will be back on the field on February 24 against the Ateneo de Manila University (AdMU) at the same venue.
-Hillary Dana D. Estacio