Eats Easy nears sweep


Matansa Football Club’s Gabriel Arkoh, Sr., center, is sandwiched by Eats Easy defenders Panapa Peteru, right, and Kosuke Sato during the second half of their game in the 8×8 NMIFA Masters League 2019 last Sunday at the NMI Soccer Training Center in Koblerville. (Roselyn B. Monroyo)

Eats Easy inched closer to a sweep of the preliminary games in the 8×8 NMIFA Masters League 2019, while Paire battled back from its debut loss in the competition for players in the 35-and-above age group.

Eats Easy notched its second victory in as many games after topping Matansa, 11-6, last Sunday at the NMI Soccer Training Center in Koblerville, while Paire nipped Los Viejos, 5-4, in the other match to enter the win column. Eats Easy, which got its first triumph over Paire, 9-4, will close out its assignment in the round-robin preliminaries this Sunday when it takes on Los Viejos.

Paire, on the other hand, will meet Matansa and results of the last two pair of matches will determine the seeding in the playoffs. The No. 1 finisher will take on the No. 4 squad for the first finals ticket, while the No. 2 and 3 teams will battle in the other semis duel. The semis will be played on Jan. 5 and the winners of the two games will square off for the title on Jan. 12.

Eats Easy moved a win away from getting the top seeding, as it pulled away from Matansa in the second half.

The unbeaten squad collected eight goals in the final 35 minutes of play with Kosuke Sato and Fradel Sedillo teaming up in the assault after firing three goals each. Sato also had three goals in the first half, lifting Eats Easy to a 3-1 halftime edge. He scored in the 11th, 12th, and 24th, while his goals in the second half were recorded in the 36th, 40th, and 56th. Sedillo delivered goals for Eats Easy in the 49th, 61st, and 63rd minute, while Jershwin Angeles’ pair came in the 44th and 70th.

As for Matansa’s side, Dhiraj Chhetri handed the losing squad its lone goal in the first half (20 th minute) and he added one more in the 65th. Jack Phan, Lar Wongpaya, Amzan Khan, and Kamrul Kamrul also lit up the board for Matansa, scoring in the 59th, 67th, 68th, and 70th minute, respectively.

Meanwhile, Trey Dunn towed Paire to the close win after making three goals, while Whit Altizer gave their squad the insurance in the second half.

Dunn handed Paire its first two goals—fifth and 28th minute—but Los Viejo’s Dan Wollak countered with a brace, too—second and 29th—bringing the game back to square one after the first half. Dunn made it three in a row with his goal in the 37th to put Paire back into the driver’s seat, while Yoji Singh’s shot in the 46th minute gave their squad more cushion, 4-2.

A Tyce Mister goal in the 49th minute kept Los Viejos in the game, but Altizer answered five minutes later to secure it for Paire. Los Viejos scored one more goal, but ran out of time to mount a comeback, as its last shot came in the final minute of the 70-minute match.

Paire’s Steve McKagan kicks the ball during the second half of their game against Los Viejos in the 8×8 NMIFA Masters League 2019 last Sunday at the NMI Soccer Training Center in Koblerville. (Roselyn B. Monroyo)

Roselyn Monroyo | Reporter
Roselyn Monroyo is the sports reporter of Saipan Tribune. She has been covering sports competitions for more than two decades. She is a basketball fan and learned to write baseball and football stories when she came to Saipan in 2005.
Disclaimer: Comments are moderated. They will not appear immediately or even on the same day. Comments should be related to the topic. Off-topic comments would be deleted. Profanities are not allowed. Comments that are potentially libelous, inflammatory, or slanderous would be deleted.