PFL Roundup: Ceres downs Kaya, Stallion holds Meralco to draw
ABS-CBN Sports on Jun 26, 2017 04:41 PM
Stallion Laguna defender Dodong Villareal fouls Phil Younghusband inside the box leading to the penalty for the Meralco Manila striker.
Spanish midfielder Bienvenido Marañon fired a hat-trick as Ceres Negros returned to winning ways with a 3-1 triumph over Kaya FC Makati, while leader Meralco Manila was held to another stalemate last Saturday night in the 2017 Philippines Football League.
Marañon opened the scoring in first half stoppage time and added a couple of goals in the second half as the Busmen bounced back from back to back losses and hiked their tally to seven points from four matches.
Kaya equalized 10 minutes into the second half through Robery Lopez Mendy, before Marañon replied with two goals for the hosts at Panaad Stadium in Bacolod City.
"I’m so happy for the win and the three goals,” said Marañon, who was named Man of the Match. “This game was very hard after two losses, but we fought to win this game, and we deserved the result."
Over at Rizal Memorial Stadium, Meralco dropped points for the second straight match after Stallion Laguna came from behind to snatch a 1-1 draw.
The Sparks took the lead through Phil Younghusband's penalty in the 15th minute, but Laguna levelled at the hour mark when Jess Melliza finished off a quick counterattack.
Despite the draw, Meralco remained in top spot with 17 points from seven matches while Stallion stayed at seventh with three points after a third draw of the season.
"We were expecting our young players to step up but the demands of the game were very high," said Meralco coach Aris Caslib. "Stallion was strong in the middle. They collected the ball in middle and passed to the flanks. They were faster in transition. For us it's a setback."
Kaya lost for a second straight match as it stayed in fourth behind Meralco, JPV Marikina and Global Cebu.
Ceres grabbed the advantage in front of close to 4,000 fans when Marañon's looping effort beat the debuting Ref Cuaresma on the Kaya goal. But the visitors came out with renewed vigor in the second half and Mendy finished off a flowing move for the equalizer in the 55th minute.
The Busmen regained the lead after Marañon converted a spotkick off a foul from Cuaresma before adding a late strike to complete his hattrick that increased his tally to four goals this season.