Ateneo booters mount huge comeback to send UST to second straight loss

Santino Honasan on Apr 02, 2016 06:21 PM
Ateneo booters mount huge comeback to stun UST
Emilio Acosta (9) scored a brace to help Ateneo come back from two goals down and stun UST, 4-2, Saturday afternoon at the McKinley Hill Stadium.

Emilio Acosta scored a brace late in the second half to help complete Ateneo ‘s comeback, as they stunned University of Santo Tomas, 4-2, Saturday afternoon at the McKinley Hill Stadium in Taguig.

Fresh off their first loss of the season, the UST Tigers needed to bounce back, and it looked as if they were doing just that in the early moments of the matchup.

UST struck early, thanks to a fifth minute conversion from rookie AJ Pasion, while another conversion form Renz Gumban made it a 2-0 UST lead in just fifteen minutes of action.

With an eternity of football to go, the Katipunan side began to mount a comeback, which started with a tip from Xavier Alcuaz off an Ateneo corner kick in the 24th minute to pull one back by halftime.

It was all Ateneo from that point, as rookie striker Jarvey Gayoso's free kick set up Julian Roxas, who found the back of the net from an equalizer in the 56th minute to knot things up at two goals apiece.

Gayoso had a couple of clean attempts that could have put Ateneo up midway through the second half, until the Blue Eagles finally broke the stalemate courtesy of an Acosta conversion in the 72nd minute off a corner kick from skipper Mikko Mabanag.

The final blow came once again from Acosta, who received an assist from Gayoso to complete the brace at the 83rd minute, putting Ateneo ahead, four goals to two.

The Growling Tigers had no answer left as they fell to their second straight loss of the season, while Ateneo picked up their third straight win.

“It feels so good to win like that!” Mabanag told ABS-CBN Sports after the match. “Winning as a team, that’s the emphasis here. We didn’t play individually, we played as a team. Tulong-tulong kami sa loob.”

While the Blue Eagles are currently carrying a ton of momentum, team captain Mabanag insists that he wants the team to take it one game at a time, something that he’s said many times during the season.

“Syempre the momentum is there, the momentum is going up, pero like what I said, and I’ll be consistent with this, one game at a time. Step by step, hindi pepwedeng padalos-dalos. Kasi once we think about the win kaagad, the top four, the final four, we’re gonna lose focus in the next game.”

The Blue Eagles leapfrog into second place as of posting, with 18 points and +10 on goal difference. UST and UP also have 18 points each, but are behind Ateneo on goals. 

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