The DLSU Lady Booters succumbed to the FEU Lady Tamaraw Booters, 0-2, in Game Two of the Women’s Football Finals earlier today at the Moro Lorenzo Football Field. With the loss, the Lady Booters has ended the season at second. The team also ended last season with the same standing.
La Salle ceded the game after Coach Hans Smit’s girls failed to answer back to Lady Tamaraw Barbie Sobredo’s penalty conversion in the 35th minute and Loreta Ladero’s strike in the hour mark.
The two teams played defensively during the first 35 minutes of the match. Attacks from either team were easily cleaned up by the opposing team to keep the game scoreless.
Unfortunately for La Salle, Toni Nolasco was called for a handball inside the box, which resulted to an FEU penalty. The tournament’s best striker, Sobredo, whipped the ball into the net, beating Palacios to give the Lady Tamaraws a, 1-0, lead.
La Salle were unable to find the equalizer before the interval. The closest chance to leveling the match arrived just before halftime. Lady Booter Angel Metillo took a free kick, which bounced in front of FEU Goalkeeper Mae Sullano, but the ball’s ascent was a foot too high to enter the goal.
Fifteen minutes into the second half, Ladero notched FEU’s second with a resemblance of her first goal during last Thursday’s game. Headed away by Miel Ampil, the ball fell to the FEU midfielder who slotted the ball past Palacios.
Smit responded by sending sophomore players Carmela Lizares, Cristina Viray and Ellyca Lacson to bring fresh legs into the game, but the Lady Tamaraws held on to the team’s advantage to win the Women’s Football Championship.
Coach Hans Smit lauded his players, saying, “They’ve overachieved themselves. With all the rookies that I have, understandably and undeniably, we have the weakest roster right now this year as compared to the other teams. Reaching the finals is a very good accomplishment. FEU is really a damn good team. They (Lady Booters) reached the finals; at least they’ve showed that they can do a lot more.”
Rookies Palacios and Nolasco took home individual honors as Best Goalkeeper and Rookie of the Year respectively.
Palacios remarked,“I got a bit scared especially in the first game. It’s my first time to feel the vibe of the UAAP. I’m happy and lucky to play for La Salle and to win second place, at least.”
This year, Team Captain Ampil, Karla Pacificador and Monica Henson will leave the team due to graduation. Smit is proud of his veterans’ efforts in guiding the young team to the grand stage once again.
The mentor added, “They’ve been part of some championship-playing teams and they’ve given their all while they were here in La Salle. You can’t ask for more.”
Team Captain Ampil expressed her fulfillment as a Lady Booter. The 22 year-old Defender is pleased with the performance of her younger teammates. She explained,“Hopefully, throughout the season, they’ve learned to be under pressure and learn how to keep composed with the pressure.”
With the young core brazened with experience, Ampil is confident of her teammates’ chances next season. “I know they can do it (winning the championship). All they have to do is work hard, believe that they can do more,” she ended.
NOTE: Green Booter Gregory Yang also received individual honors in the men’s division as the tournament’s best defender.