NEWEST acquisition Spanish striker Bienvenido Marañon dazzled with a hat trick as Bacolod Ceres-La Salle FC stunned multi-titled Loyola-Meralco Sparks, 6-1 in the resumption of the second round of United Football League (UFL) last Saturday at the Rizal Memorial Stadium in Manila.
The Sparks drew first blood on Bradley Grayson’s early goal in the 18th minute against goalie Michael Casas. Ceres FC and Azkals’ Fil-German midfielder Patrick Reichelt beat Loyola’s keeper Tomas Trigo for the equalizer in the 25th minute.
Three minutes later, the Sparks were caught with a handball violation allowing Marañon to double Bacolod's goal advantage. Not done yet, Marañon fired another shot past Loyola’s custodian for a 3-1 lead at the break.
In the second half, Reichelt broke from Sparks’ defense in the 57th minute to extend Ceres’ lead to 4-1. Marañon showed who is new in town and nailed his third and Ceres’ fifth goal in the game.
Despite the huge advantage, the Transporters continued to play tough offensively and Fil-Belgian midfielder Jeffrey Christaens completed the scoring rally in the 85th minute.
Both sides played almost equal offensively with Ceres firing 15 attempts (11 on target), the Sparks had 16 goal tries (nine on goals).
Loyola also forced seven corners against a pair from Ceres which played more aggressive as evidenced by five offside calls and committing more fouls, 17-15.
Earlier, football fans witnessed a high-scoring game as the Green Archers United routed Pachanga Diliman FC, 9-5.
Mendy Lopez led the Archers with four goals (21’, 22’, 27’ and 62’) ,Jesus Melliza added in the 45th and 81st minutes while Jimuel Ariola, Robert Canedo and Tating Pasilan Jr. had one each.
Jinggoy Valmayor and Hamed Haji Mahdi scored two goals each as Hossein Doustdarsefidmazgi added a goal for Pachanga. (HGD)