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NU, La Salle salvage draws to remain in first place

MANILA, Philippines – National University (NU) and De La Salle University salvaged draws in their respective matches to remain tied for first place in the UAAP Season 78 men’s football tournament Thursday at the Moro Lorenzo Field.

Skipper Paolo Salenga scored the equalizer in the 58th minute as the 10-men Bulldogs held defending champion Far Eastern University (FEU) to a 2-2 draw.

The Green Archers, meanwhile, halved a point with University of Santo Tomas (UST) after a 1-1 stalemate.

READ: Catching up with UAAP Football stars Paolo Bugas and Paolo Salenga

NU opened the scoring with a Chima Uzoka goal, as FEU keeper Ray Joyel was not solid in his save at the post off a Salenga free kick in the fifth minute.

Eric Giganto then struck from a corner kick in the 21st minute, allowing FEU to level. Rookie Rico Andes netted his third goal of the season in the 36th minute to give the Tamaraws a 2-1 lead.

The Bulldogs went down to 10 men in the final 45 minutes after Uzoka was sent off in added time of the first half for hitting Bugas. But NU made an adjustment at the start of the second half when goalkeeper Chris Perocho took over in the post form Elijah Aban.

Salenga found the back of the net inside the box from a Patrick Valenzuela assists for his third goal of the season to tie the match at 2-2.

After winning their first two matches of the season, the Green Archers had trouble with the Growling Tigers. UST led 1-0 after a 17th minute goal from John de Castro off a header by Dionisio Busmion.

La Salle equalized just before halftime after Jose Montelibano scored after Greggy Yang headed the ball to him following a cross by Jed Diamante.

La Salle and NU remain tied for first place with seven points, while FEU and UST are tied for third and fourth with five points.

For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website.

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