Kanoa vs Shirley’s in finale


Kanoa Football Club’s Sharmaine Francisco, right, tries to prevent a Southern United FC player from stealing the ball during the second half of their semis game in the girls U15 division of the 2017 NMIFA Fall Youth League at the Francisco M. Sablan Middle School Field last Saturday. (Roselyn B. Monroyo)

Shirley’s Football Club and Kanoa FC took separate routes to the finals of the girls U15 division of the 2017 NMIFA Fall Youth League.

Kanoa FC eased its way to the title match against Shirley’s after dominating Southern United FC, 5-1 in the second semis game at the Francisco M. Sablan Middle School Field last Saturday. In the first Final Four tiff, Shirley’s labored a 3-2 victory over MP United FC to remain on track for its sixth straight division championship. Shirley’s and Kanoa will dispute the U15 crown this Saturday at 1pm.

Katherine Magat drilled the go-ahead goal for Shirley’s in the 57th minute, completing the come-from-behind win after the squad faced a 1-2 deficit at the break.

MP United threatened to hand Shirley’s its first loss this season after getting one goal each from Fiona Marielle Bucalig and Maury Zon Tybaco. Bucalig broke the ice for MP United with her conversion in the 19th minute, while a goal from Therize Millare six minutes later forced the first deadlock of the game. Tybaco then found the back of the net a minute before the first half wrapped up to put MP United on top anew.

MP United’s stay in the driver’s seat did not last long as Lillian Podziewski got into the board in the 49th minute for the second standoff, while eight minutes later Magat gave Shirley’s its first taste of the lead. The defending champion went on to keep its advantage, hanging tough on defense to foil MP United’s bid for an upset.

In the second semis game, Kanoa left Southern United no room to operate and set up a surprise victory by hitting its target early. Sharmaine Francisco drew first blood for Kanoa with her shot in the 12th minute, while Paulyn Grace Joyce made it a 2-0 lead in the 23rd minute.

Another goal from Francisco just two minutes into the second half widened the gap, 3-0, while Joyce also got her second goal in the 40th minute before Southern United finally lit up the board in the 55th to avert a shutout loss. Joyce went on to complete a hat trick with her shot in the 69th minute.

MP United 4, TanHoldings 0

MP United formalized its claim to the boys U17 division title after beating TanHoldings last Saturday at the Hopwood Middle School Field.

MP United improved to an 8-1-0 win-draw-loss record with one game left in the season. The eventual champion is ahead by three victories against TanHoldings (5-2-2) and two over Matansa (6-0-3).

Dai Podziewski, Oliver Lee, Anthony Fruit, and Johan Pohl scored in MP United’s eighth win.

Matansa 7, NDA 2
Matansa routed the National Development Academy to move back to the No. 2 spot in the team standings.

Louie Calayag scored three goals, while Lolobeyong Benito added two, and Brandon Delos Reyes and Jeffrey Seo chipped in one each. NDA (2-0-7) drew its pair of goals from Ryan Relucio and Gillian Villagomez.

Kanoa 5, Paire 1
Kanoa got its second victory after topping Paire.

Ian Maniago registered two goals for Kanoa (2-1-6), which got one apiece from Merrick Toves, Jim Maniago, and Kirt Andon. Rex De Jose posted the lone goal for Paire (2-0-7).

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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