UAAP: Lady Booters fail to convert on chances, split points with Golden Tigresses, 0-0

The DLSU Lady Booters and the UST Golden Tigresses saw a repeat ending of their first round matchup earlier today as the teams played out to a goalless draw, 0-0, at the Circulo Verde Football Pitch.

Of set pieces and offsides

Both squads matched each other for pace and intensity in the first half. As team captain Kyra Dimaandal explained, “We really go head-to-head. Our strengths fit their (UST) weaknesses, and their strengths, our weaknesses.”

The La Salle side earned a few early corners; Shai Del Campo wrestled for the ball near the box at the 4’ mark, while Sara Castañeda’s corner kick led to a scuffle in front of the goal in the 17th minute. Dimaandal got a foot to the ball but sent the shot straight to the UST goalkeeper.

Set pieces from two more corners and two free kicks for the rest of the first half similarly fell flat for the Green-and-White as the opposing squad was able to steer the ball away from their net. Though chances were plenty, few attempts from either side were of sufficient quality to threaten the back of the net.

Meanwhile, the Golden Tigresses fed the ball quickly to their forwards but were called for offside positions as they broke away from the DLSU defenders.

The Taft-based squad’s best chance of the half came at the 28’ mark, as Dimaandal sprinted down the right flank to beat the defending players on the wings. The team captain crossed the ball to Irish Navaja who let loose a strong strike that arced straight to the crossbar.

Converting and finishing

While it was the Golden Tigresses who had been attempting closer strikes inside the box during the first half, the Lady Booters were not tamed in the second half. The Lasallians kept possession longer and pressed further up the pitch, playing more toward the attacking third and challenging their opponents to crumble inside the box.

The Tomasian side were steadfast in their defensive formation, however, as La Salle’s offense had been unable to find a clear path to the net.

A quick counter-attack from the Taft-based squad moved the ball up close to the net in the 59th minute. Dimaandal was close to the touch, but the UST goalkeeper and final defender crowded out the striker before she could finish off the play.

Finishing was the folly of the squad according to Dimaandal, and their many attempts left the Lasallians frustrated as playing time ran out. Rocelle Mendaño curled high-arcing shots from outside the box in the 75th and 87th minutes, but the ball sailed above the post both times. Dimaandal’s lob, off a Castañeda cross in the 89th minute, was again saved by the keeper, while Del Campo’s low ball in added time was blocked and the striker fell just short of capitalizing on the loose ball.

Gigil,” Dimaandal expressed, “I had a few attempts, I had it (the play) in my mind. I was already imagining how it would go, but it wouldn’t convert the same way.”

“We could’ve done more,” acknowledged Dimaandal. “The possession was there. And in the last few minutes, halata na we could score.” (It was obvious that we could score.)

Nevertheless, the team captain remained confident that the squad, now carrying a 3-3-0 win-draw-loss record, would be able to “dominate” should they face the Golden Tigresses again in the finals. To assure their finals spot, however, the Lady Booters will seek a much-needed win when they square off against the ADMU Lady Eagles on Saturday, May 4, at 3 pm at the same venue.

Erinne Ong

By Erinne Ong

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