By Jerome S. Galunan Jr.
Defending champion Ceres-La Salle Football Club blanked San Beda FC, 6-nil, yesterday and refused to yield any goal to complete their 2-0 win-loss run in the just-concluded Group A Qualifier of the Philippine Football Federation (PFF)-Smart National Club Championship 2014 played at the North Football Field, Talisay City.
The home squad came out to be too much for visiting Rizal FA’s San Beda side with three goals in the first half led by Fil-Spanish Carlie de Murga’s 19th minute goal.
San Carlos City’s Jayson Panhay scored his first of two in the 28th minute to give Ceres their second goal in the match as veteran forward Adrián Gallardo broke San Beda’s defense to nail the champion’s third goal in the 34th minute.
Playing with high level football, Panhay scored his second goal with two minutes past the resumption of the match to further extend Ceres’ advantage to 4-nil.
The visitors continued to struggle on their defense as they failed to stop the raging Ceres’ attacks. Gallardo struck his second goal in the 54th minute and Kim Sang min sealed the match three minutes later.
On Saturday, the Ceres side demolished the Dipolog, 15-nil.
The Bacolod-based club headed by Korean mentor Cha Soungyooung is bannered by team captain Fil-Spanish defender Juani Guirado, co-skipper and goalkeeper Michael Casas, second choice keeper Bago City-native Eduard Sacapaño, Fil-Ams forward Nate Burkey and defender Jason Sabio, Fil-Belgian wingers Jeffrey Christaeans and Angelo Marasigan, Fil-German midfielders Manny Ott and Patrick Reichelt, Fil-Italian twins Marvin and Marwin Angeles, Talisay City’s Camelo Tacusalme and Jalsor Soriano, San Carlos City’s Arnie Pasinabo Jr., Lemuel Unabia and J Baguioro, as well as foreign reinforcements Irish-Nigerian Orman Okunaiya, German Kevin Capolei, and Koreans Jin ho Kim, Kyum-Son Cho and Yong Chan Son.
“With the win, Ceres FC will advance to the national elimination as the Top team of Group A,” said Paulline Javelona, Group A Qualifier General Coordinator and Negros Occidental Football Association Secretary-General.
In other qualifying matches, Stallion FC topped Group B as M’lang FC made it in Group C.
“We will be waiting for the results of Groups D and E since their matches will start on October 1-3. Edging the Group D is Erco FC of Cebu FA while for Group E is Laos FC from Leyte FA,” described Javelona.
The top teams in the qualifying tournaments will join the top three teams in the 2014 UFL First Division led by defending champion Global FC, Loyola and Kaya FC to complete the eight teams in the national elimination.
The eight teams will then be divided into two groups with top two teams advancing to the crossover semifinals while the winners enter the championship match.
Supervising the Group A Qualifying include: NOFA’s General Coordinator Paulline Javelona and Tournament Commissioner Mike Batales, PFF’s Match Commissioner Bert Honasan and Referees’ Assessor Dennis Estaniel, and referees Steve Supresencia, Kent Guboyan, Joemarie Dignadice and Francia Encalgado./
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