GTC, Garapan in tight race


A Garapan Elementary School player, left, tries to keep possession in front of the defense of a Koblerville Elementary School student during their game in the National Elite Academy League last Saturday at the KES Field. (Roselyn B. Monroyo)

Gregorio T. Camacho Elementary School and Garapan Elementary School are neck-and-neck in the team standings in the National Elite Academy League.

GTC has yet to drop a single match in the competition and earned a 2-1-0 win-draw-loss record in the second cycle of matches last Saturday at the Koblerville Elementary School Field for a league-best 7-1-0 overall mark. The Binadu swept the five games in the first cycle of the competition to take the lead in the six-team field.

In the second cycle, GTC got off to a good start after shutting down Oleai Elementary School, 3-0. Up next for GTC was Koblerville and the match ended in a draw, 2-2. The league leader then closed out the weekend event with a close 1-0 triumph over William S. Reyes Elementary School.

With its seven wins and one draw after eight matches, GTC has scored 22 points and 30 goals. It has given up only four goals—the least so far in the league.

Meanwhile, Garapan Elementary School is breathing down GTC’s neck, as the former also notched a pair of wins last Saturday. Garapan wrapped up the second part of the league with a 6-0-1 record and just four points (18) behind GTC in the standings.

The Mallards started last Saturday’s games with a 4-2 victory over Koblerville and followed it up with a 5-0 rout of San Vicente Elementary School. Garapan after seven games has earned 28 goals and yielded eight.

In other results, WSR earlier won over San Vicente, 2-0, and Oleai, 5-0, before losing to GTC to keep the No. 3 spot in the team standings. The Kingfishers hold a 5-0-3 record and have tallied 21 goals and allowed six.

Koblerville moved up to fourth with its 2-2-4 mark as it saved a win last Saturday after outclassing San Vicente, 3-1. The Umang brought their total goal up to 21 and have given up 19 to their opponents. San Vicente dropped to fifth with its 1-1-6 slate and has made only seven goals so far, while yielding 25.

Oleai rounded out the team standings with a dismal 0-0-7 card. It has yet to score a goal in the competition and has surrendered the most goals (45).

Oleai and the five other schools will play in one more set of matches next month before competing in the playoffs to determine the league champion.

The NEA League is part of Northern Mariana Islands Football Association’s grassroots program and focuses on students in the elementary level. Under the program, NMIFA coaches go to schools, eye talents, and train them regularly. Students then form a squad to represent their school in NEA competitions.

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.

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