AFP plays Meralco to 3-3 draw
MANILA, Philippines - Reigning League and Cup champion Air Force Phoenix scored two goals in injury time as it pulled off a stirring come-from-behind 3-3 draw against a heavily favored Loyola Meralco Sparks in the United Football League at the University of Makati field in Makati City over the weekend.
Air Force rallied from a 1-3 deficit as ace striker James Younghustband was sent off for shoving Ian Bayona, enabling Joebel Bermejo and Ian Araneta to sneak in two goals to salvage a draw.
The loss also leaves Global FC on top of the heap after it posted a 5-1 victory over Kaya FC for 21 points on seven wins against two defeats.
Loyola was stalled at No. 2 with 19 points on six wins, a draw and a loss while Air Force jumped from joint sixth with Green Archers United FC to a share of No. 5 with Army Fritz & Macziol with nine points.
Araneta wound up with two goals, his seventh and eighth in the last four matches to become the second leading scorer in the league with eight, four behind Loyola’s Phil Younghusband, who likewise scored a brace to hike his total to 12 goals.
Earlier, Fil-Spanish Carli de Murga came through with a hat trick to highlight Global FC’s 5-1 conquest of Kaya FC.
De Murga delivered three straight goals that turned a shaky 2-1 lead to a rout that improved Global?s point output to 21 on seven wins against two defeats.
Misagh Bahadoran also played a key role for Global with four assists.
De Murga and Bahadoran were both members of the Phl Azkals team that finished third in the AFC Challenge Cup in Nepal last month.
Kaya FC, backed by LBC, moved down to second place after absorbing a second loss against six triumphs, a record equivalent to 18 points.
It was also the second straight win for playing coach Dan Palami after taking over from Graeme McKinnon. Under the Azkals team manager, Global has scored 10 goals.
Valentine Kama scored the first goal for Global on the sixth minute off a feed by Bahadorna but Kaya striker Eric Dagroh of Ivory Coast responded a few minutes later.
Global, however, regained the lead after forward Izo Elhabbib came through with a goal of his own on the 25th minute, thanks to another nifty cross from Bahadoran.