UAAP: Lady Booters settle for draw versus Lady Tamaraws, will play Fighting Maroons for second Finals spot

The DLSU Lady Booters were unable to retake the number one spot on the UAAP Season 85 Women’s Football tournament table after drawing the FEU Lady Tamaraws, 1-all, in a high-octane second-round matchup between the two sides. 

It was Maria Layacan who struck first for La Salle in the 45th minute shortly before Dionesa Tolentino’s worldie equalized in the first minute of injury time before the halftime break.

One foot through the door

Looking to set the date for a rematch between the two sides in the Finals, the squad from Taft immediately threatened FEU within their box after a scramble resulted from Chenny Deñoso’s early corner kick.

Defending with five in the midfield, La Salle managed to funnel away FEU’s advances with ease early on, as they looked for gaps within the Tamaraw backline. The Green and White looked to play Layacan on the right shoulder in an attempt to pester FEU shot stopper Jessa Lehayan, who exhibited her safe hands on the lob through balls that came her way. The Lady Booters felt the absence of Lyka Teves on a tactical decision—who, holding a yellow card, came off the bench later—as the attackers failed to connect with the ball in the final third.

Approaching the 40’ mark, FEU delivered a deadly ball across the DLSU goal for what was the biggest chance to break the deadlock, but the slight mistiming on the cross saw the ball sail behind Alexandrea Gumilao’s posts—allowing the threat to subside. FEU continued to threaten DLSU by pushing the ball forward, but they failed to create any clear-cut chances before La Salle caught the squad from Diliman on the counter.

Layacan managed to receive the ball behind the Lady Tamaraws’ backline before she drew first blood for DLSU in the waning minutes of the opening half with a clinical finish in the 45th minute. It seemed as if DLSU was through for the Finals, with the team and crowd exploding alike, but FEU immediately leveled the scoreline after a stunning volley from the middle third of the pitch was made by Tolentino as they entered added-time.


Despite seeing their lead disappear almost immediately, DLSU continued to look threatening. In the 51st minute, Samantha Toledo had an opportunity to break the second deadlock, but the threat was turned into nothing more than a goal kick. It was at the 56-minute mark where Teves had a chance with a free kick for DLSU, but her long-distance effort resulted in an easy save for FEU’s Lehayan.

Needing a win to secure a rematch between the two sides in the Finals, La Salle was far from willing to settle for a tie, with the Green and White eleven keeping a full head of steam. In the 67th minute, a menacing dribble by Layacan penetrated the FEU box but was snuffed out. Maye Mendaño had a free kick chance of her own in the 73rd minute, but it was another easy stop for the Lady Tamaraws.

The Lady Booters were unable to put up a rally toward the tail-end of UAAP Season 85 and will have to take on the UP Fighting Maroons once again in a playoff at 5 pm next Saturday, May 13, for the second spot in the Finals—to standoff against the FEU Lady Tamaraws. La Salle has yet to beat UP this season, suffering a 1-0 loss in Round One before drawing 1-all in Round Two.

Diego Manzano

By Diego Manzano

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