Meralco blanks Army; Kaya, Nomads prevailBy Cedelf P. Tupas
Philippine Daily Inquirer
LOYOLA Meralco bounced back with a 4-0 drubbing of Army Fritz and Macziol Sunday night to trim Global’s lead at the top of the United Football League, even as Kaya and Nomads Auction Manila hammered out tough victories.
Phil Younghusband fired a hat-trick at the University of Makati field as the Sparks ripped Army and claimed a ninth win that boosted their tally to 28 points.
Kaya tightened its grip of third spot following a 2-0 triumph over Green Archers United, while Nomads remained out of relegation trouble by edging Navy Red Juice, 1-0.
Badly needing bite in its attack, Kaya found unlikely heroes in leftback Nicolas Bolzico and substitute Junior Muñoz, who scored a goal in each half.
The lanky Bolzico unleashed an exquisite strike from a tight angle that caught Martin Villaflor off his line and found the top corner in the 28th minute, before Muñoz wrapped up the win with a 72nd-minute goal.
Kaya now has 27 points heading into a crucial clash with fourth-ranked Stallion on Wednesday.
Younghusband struck from close range after his older brother James’ strike was stopped by Ed Sacapano in the 41st minute.
Davide Cortina doubled the tally before Phil Younghusband struck two more in the 74th and 79th minutes to complete his hat-trick.
It was a resounding response for the Sparks, who absorbed only their second loss to Pasargad, 3-4, last Thursday.
Army dropped to eighth spot after falling to its third straight loss.
French striker Toullec Loic scored from close range in the fourth minute as Nomads grabbed their third win in 11 matches to climb to sixth spot behind Air Force on goal difference.
It was Navy’s 10th loss of the season, dimming its chances of staying in the first division. The last-placed team in the top-flight will be relegated to the second division next season.