MANILA, Philippines – Defending champion Far Eastern University (FEU) handed De La Salle University its first loss of the UAAP Season 78 men’s football tournament with a 1-0 victory late Sunday at the McKinley Hill Stadium.
It was the Green Archers’ first loss after opening the season with five wins and two draws.
One of the favorites for the Rookie of the Year trophy, FEU’s Rico Andes hiked his total to a tournament-best seven goals by nailing the match-winner in the 72nd minute.
La Salle’s defeat also allowed University of Santo Tomas (UST) to leap to the top of the table after the Growling Tigers eked out a 3-3 draw with University of the Philippines (UP) in the first match.
Substitute Jayson Rafol’s goal in the 88th minute bailed out the Growling Tigers, who now have a league-best 18 points ahead of the Green Archers’ 17.
“Even if it’s a draw, for us it’s a win already,” said UST coach Marjo Allado.
The Fighting Maroons led 2-0 on early goals by JB Borlongan and Sebastian Patangan, before Darwin Busmion struck in the 25th and 28th minute for the Tigers to level.
Daniel Gadia gave back the lead in the 71st minute, only for Rafol to score the equalizer minutes from time.
FEU is now in solo third place with 14 points, while UP is at fourth place with 12.
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