Ateneo makes men’s football finals vs UP
ATENEO de Manila won a penalty shootout over archrival De La Salle, 5-4, on Thursday to advance to the Season 78 University Athletic Association of the Philippines men’s football final at the Rizal Memorial Stadium.
Carlo Liay and goalkeeper JP Oracion were the biggest Blue Eagles in the shootout after the crucial Final Four duel ended in a 1-1 standoff.
The Blue Eagles will face the University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons in the final at 3 p.m. on Thursday, also at the Rizal Memorial Stadium.
Liay, a former Rookie of the Year, gave Ateneo the lead, 5-4, and Oracion, a substitute late in extra time, had a brilliant save against Jose Montelibano, which sent the Green Archers packing.
It will be the first Finals meeting between the two Katipunan rivals since the 2012-2013 season, when the Blue Eagles swept the Fighting Maroons in two games—both decided on penalties.
“UP is organized in defending and attacking. We need to play our best on Thursday,” said Coach JP Merida, who was a part of the Ateneo squad that booked a “three-peat” from 2004-2006.
The Blue Eagles are gunning for their seventh title, while the Maroons are seeking their 17th championship, their first since the 2011-12 season.