UAAP 81 Football: UST defeats NU in bittersweet season-ender

Santino Honasan on May 02, 2019 05:39 PM
UAAP 81 Football: UST defeats NU in bittersweet season-ender
Conrado Dimacali Jr. scores twice to power UST to a season-ending win over NU.

University of Santo Tomas ended their UAAP Season 81 Men's Football Tournament campaign with a 2-1 win over National University, Thursday afternoon at the FEU Diliman Football Field in Quezon City. 

Conrado Dimacali Jr. put the Growling Tigers ahead late in the first half, scoring off a penalty kick in the 43rd minute. 

The UST striker remained on point in the second half, as he found the back of the net once again, making good on a Glen Ramos pass and finishing from at the top of the box for the brace and the 2-0 lead in the 63rd minute. 

NU was able to avoid a shutout in the final match of the elimination round, with Lemark Unabia pulling one back in the 66th minute. 

The Bulldogs hoped to be able to pull even and end the season on a high note, but ultmately could not convert as UST held on for the win. 

It was a bittersweet victory for last season's finalists, as De La Salle University's 1-0 win over Far Eastern University earlier in the afternoon eliminated them from playoff contention. 

A DLSU loss would have sent the Growling Tigers back into the semifinals, while a DLSU draw would have forced a playoff for the remaining Final Four spot. 

"Siyempre, masakit para sa players," said UST head coach Marjo Allado. "Siyempre, finalist ka last year, pero hindi naman namin control yung game ni FEU [and DLSU] kanina, kasi dapat may playoff, but kasalanan din namin yun, first off all, from the staff. Siguro may pinag-kulang din kami dun sa mga draws namin, so hindi namin masisisi yung players doon." 

"I-aanalyze namin kung paano namin na-handle yung season," Allado added. 

UST ends the season in the 5th seed with 23 points off 6 wins, 5 draws, and 3 losses, just one point shy of a possible post-season berth. 

NU finishes with  2 wins, 4 draws, and 8 losses for 10 points. 

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