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Thu 23 May 2024

QUEENS OF THE TURF: FEU beats DLSU anew, gets 12th UAAP crown

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Far Eastern University (FEU) reaffirmed its excellence on the football turf anew, stamping their class against De La Salle University, 2-1, in extra time in their second UAAP women’s football final match since the pandemic held Friday at the Rizal Memorial Stadium.

Central defender Jonella Albiño hit the miraculous game winner—a free kick 30 yards away from the goal—in the 112th minute to avoid keep the game away from a penalty shootout.

As the Lady Archers ran out of gas toward the end, the Lady Tamaraws have broken the tie against their Taft arch rivals, getting their 12th crown in this tournament, a cup ahead of La Salle.

“Hindi lang naman ako ito. Yung teammates ko, yung buong team, nag-tulong-tulong kami para sa championship na ito,” Albiño said after the game, deflecting individual credit the way she blocked numerous passes to opposing strikers all season long.

“Ayun ang spot talaga ni Albiño. Yun ang favorite nya. So pina-practice nya yun talaga. Kung may foul sa area na yun, si Albiño ang kukuha nyan,” said FEU manager Let Dimzon of her prized defender.

“Siya ang co-captain ko. After me, siya. Pero para sakin, siya ang pinakamagaling sa lahat,” praised season Most Valuable Player Dionesa Tolentin.

Before Albiño’s goal, the Lady Tamaraws began to mount their comeback late in the first half, with beating La Sallian midfielder TJ Isulat on the 1v1 in the right flank for the equalizer in the 45th minute.

La Salle had the first crack of the goal, scoring off a quick buildup with Lyka Teves assisting to speedster Mari Layacan, who scored in the 17th minute.

It was a defensive tit-for-tat prior in the second half going to extra time, with FEU impeccable in reading La Salle’s passing lanes and in marking their strikers while the Lady Tamaraws’ offense got stifled by the Lady Archers’ midfield pressing.

“Nung una, losing hope na talaga ako e,” commented Dimzon. “Wala yung play namin. Walang-wala yung passing namin. Pero I’m happy kasi ang players ko nagtatrabaho nang husto. Every time na naiiskoran kami, hindi talaga sila natatapos dun, laging bumabawi.”

“Ayaw naming mawala ang title e, so kahit sabihin mo na may mga lapses kami, tinatrabaho talaga ng mga player,” she added

National player Tolentin added the Golden Boot in her trophy case, while La Salle forward Shai Del Campo was given the Golden Ball as the best midfielder.

University of the Philippines’ Coline Acelo and Jennifer Baroin repeated as Golden Glove and Best Defender, respectively.

Ateneo de Manila likewise achieved their second consecutive Sportsmanship Award.

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