Kamea Mangrobang’s stoppage-time strike lifted University of the Philippines to a 1-0 win over Ateneo de Manila University to take the top of the UAAP Season 85 Women’s Football tournament table, Saturday, Apr. 1, at the UP Diliman Football Field.
With the game hanging by the balance, Mangrobang unleashed a powerful attempt from the right side of outside the box to break the deadlock in the 90+1 minute.
“Hats off to Ateneo,” said coach Anto Gonzales. “They played really well and very solid in defense. As for us in the first half, we didn’t check any objective from our checklist. We were second to the second balls, fifty-fifties. Ateneo wanted it more. We had the lucky goal, but Ateneo deserved at least a point.”
UP now topped the standings before the Holy Week break with 10 points on the back of three wins, one draw, and one defeat.
Mangrobang’s goal allowed the Fighting Maroons’ persistence to pay off as they had most of the possession throughout the match amidst the stingy and compact defense of the Blue Eagles.
Ateneo, though, could have scored earlier had Soleil Schroth’s sniff at goal not hit the crossbar in the second half.
“To be honest, we cannot be happy with the win,” said Gonzales. “We cannot be happy at all. First half we were disconnected.
“Maybe factor also that we put in some new players, tried out a different formation in the hopes of scoring more but players playing out of position — that’s on me. Even then, the effort and the approach regarding the small details and non-negotiables weren’t really present in the first half,” he added.
Ateneo is bottom after it lost its fifth straight match this season.