Kanoa -1, Matansa remain on top


A Kanoa Football Club-1 player breaks free from his defender during the first half of their game against Matansa in the co-ed U12 division of the 2017 NMIFA Fall Youth League last Saturday at the Hopwood Middle School Field. (Roselyn B. Monroyo)

Kanoa Football Club-1 and Matansa are still at the forefront of their respective divisions in the 2017 NMIFA Fall Youth League after downing separate opponents last Saturday.

In the co-ed U12 age group, Kanoa-1 topped Matansa FC at the Hopwood Middle School Field, 5-3, to earn a 5-0-1 win-draw-loss record. Kanoa-1 leads MP United FC (4-1-1), TanHoldings FC (3-0-2), Matansa (2-0-4), Paire FC (2-0-4), and Kanoa-2 (1-0-5).

After facing a 1-2 deficit at halftime, Kanoa-1 turned the tables on Matansa in the second half to foil the latter’s bid for an upset. Andrew Sablan knocked in two of Kanoa-1’s four goals in the final 30 minutes of the match, scoring his first in the 33rd minute and the second in the 55th. Sean Gil and Markus Toves drilled the two other goals for Kanoa-1 with the former finding the back of the net in the 48th minute and latter doing the same five minutes later.

Jim Kurt Maniago posted Kanoa-1’s lone goal in the first half, making the equalizer in the 28th minute. Six minutes earlier, Jin Xin Wen handed Matansa its first goal, while Chanyang Woo scored the second in the 24th minute to give their team the 2-1 advantage at the break.

Three minutes into the resumption of the match, Sablan’s first goal knotted the count before Matansa reclaimed the lead, 3-2, off Nazzir Altamirano’s goal in the 45th minute. That was the last time Matansa was on top, as Kanoa-1 countered with three goals in the ensuing plays.

In other results in the division, MP United and Paire prevailed in their respective matches.

MP United defeated TanHoldings, 9-5, to remain in the race for the division title. MP United is just a win behind Kanoa-1. Each squad has four games left in the double-round robin tournament, which will be decided by the top finisher in the team standings.

Richard Castro powered MP United past TanHoldings after firing four goals. Evan Mendiola and Andrew Chung added two goals each to back up Castro, while Jereme Quimzon tallied one.

Dylan Mister duplicated Mendiola and Chung’s brace to lead Paire to a 4-3 triumph over Kanoa-2. Mister scored in the 20th and 37th minute with his last goal providing insurance to Paire as the team built a 4-2 lead.

Ethan Taisacan and Miles Timmons scored the two other goals for Paire, while Lowell Lumauag nailed a pair for Kanoa-2, which got its other goal from Minsoo Kwon.

Matansa 7, Paire 3

Age group leader Matansa kept its distance against MP United after beating Paire in the final game last Saturday at the Koblerville Elementary School Field.

Matansa now has a 4-1-0 card, a victory ahead of MP United (3-2-0). Shirley’s (3-1-1), TanHoldings (1-2-2), Kanoa (1-0-4), and Paire (0-5-7) complete the rankings.

Lolobeyong Benito stood out in Matansa’s easy win over Paire after scoring five goals. He had a hat trick right at the end of the first half, which wrapped up with Matansa on top, 4-1. Alex Christian Achas registered the other goal for Matansa in the first frame, while Jon Villagomez was the lone Paire player to hit the board in the opening half.

MP United 3, TanHoldings 3
MP United missed joining Matansa at the No. 1 spot in the team standings after settling for a draw against TanHoldings.

Taka Borja drilled the equalizer for TanHoldings in the second half, while Reginald Pascual and Oliver Fajardo logged the two other goals for the squad. Richard Steele, Rohan Basnet, and Dylan Kim were the scorers for MP United.

Shirley’s 6, Kanoa 2
Shirley’s kept MP United and Matansa within striking distance after downing Kanoa.

After a deadlock at the break, 2-2, Shirley’s went all out in the second half to match MP United’s third win and move one victory away from tying Matansa. Rakib Hassan, Rommel Mendoza, Daniel DUenas, and Nicolasi Hernandez scored for Shirley’s in the second half. Duenas and Mendoza also hit the board in the first half, allowing Shirley’s to match Kanoa’s output. Kanoa got an own goal in the opening half, while its second goal came from Merrick Toves.

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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