Kaya FC closes in on Copa semis seat
Olmin Leyba (The Philippine Star) - September 21, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Streaking Kaya FC Iloilo inched closer to a semifinal berth in the PFL Copa Paulino Alcantara semifinals while struggling Ceres Negros FC kept its own bid alive after scoring close victories over separate foes  at the Rizal Memorial Stadium Wednesday.

The Iloilo booters leaned on Alfred Osei’s 75th minute winner to edge JPV Marikina, 1-0, and book their second straight win in Group B, putting themselves in prime position to seize the group’s No. 1 seeding in the Last-4 with one more triumph against Global Cebu on Sunday.

“It was really a tough match,” said Kaya coach Noel Marcaida whose wards pace Group A with six points ahead of Marikina’s three markers and still-winless Cebu. “JPV played an attacking-oriented game. We played well throughout 90 minutes, it’s just that we didn’t get our finishing in the final third. We’re able to control the midfield, got to penetrate the area but for us to win games, we need to get our shots on goal.”  

Over in Group A, the Busmen finally broke through after a 0-2 start in the Cup by hammering a come-from-behind 2-1 victory over Stallion Laguna. 

Blake Powell (56’) opened scoring for Ceres and cancelled out Fitch Arboleda’s 39th minute opener then Manny Ott fired the go-ahead rocket in the 84th as the league champs got a lifeline in their semis bid.

Ceres caught up with Stallion and Davao Aguilas on points but occupies third with an inferior goal difference. The Busmen will try to boost their quest in Saturday’s outing against the Aguilas.

“Hopefully we can continue this all the way to our last game of the eliminations. Everyone is looking to take the two games so that we can qualify for the semis,” said Ceres assistant coach Ian Treyes.

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