by John Reczon Calay
The University of the Philippines secured their semi-final twice-to-beat advantage after cementing their hold at second place with a 2-0 win against University of the East in the UAAP Men’s Football Tournament Sunday at the Ateneo de Manila University pitch.
The Maroons have now accumulated 22 points, five points ahead of University of Santo Tomas which finished the elimination round with 17 points.
UP pressured UE from the opening whistle and found the back of the net in the 11th minute courtesy of team captain Jinggoy Valmayor.
Valmayor continued his aggressiveness and almost scored another goal three minutes later to no avail as the ball hit the crossbar. But Valmayor made up for the let down as he completed a brace in injury time of the first half to put UP ahead with a commanding 2-0 lead.
Valmayor is now the league’s top scorer, accounting for nine goals so far this season.
It was sweet revenge for the Maroons against the Warriors, who defeated them via a similar stand-off in the first round.
UP will play its last game of the elimination round against the defending champion Ateneo in a non-bearing match on Sunday, Feb. 9, at the Far Eastern University-Diliman football field.