MIMAROPA booters stay unbeaten after 7-2 drubbing of Northern Mindanao
LAGUNA, Philippines – Opening their title-defense bid with close wins over Bicol and CARAGA, defending titlists MIMAROPA finally found their championship form as they hammered Northern Mindanao, 7-2, in the continuation of the Palarong Pambansa Secondary Football tournament, Tuesday, May 6, at the Laguna State Polytechnic University in Sta. Cruz.
MIMAROPA – whose core comes from Palawan – relied once more to their Romblon-based recruits as Ramil Feliciano registered a hat trick and Jhonered Folaron added a goal of his own to tow the 2012 Palaro champions to the top of Bracket A to get ahead of everybody else to the quarterfinal round.
“We really target to be number one in our bracket to have a good morale coming into the quarterfinals,” Michael June Salmo told Rappler shortly after the game.
Salmo’s wards started their hunt for another title on the wrong foot as they scraped past Bicol Region, 1-nil, before giving up two second half goals in their 3-2 squeaker over CARAGA on Monday.
But for the first-time Palarong Pambansa coach, their first two games were just part of a dry run.
“We were still gasping for air in our first few matches but I can now say that we are getting there.”
Polaron, who scored MIMAROPA’s second against CARAGA, drilled in what could be the fastest goal in the tournament as he zigzagged through their foes’ defense to put his squad on top just moments after kickoff.
With Northern Mindanao still in shock, Feliciano added another goal in the third while Leon Hagedorn made it 3-nil just 17 minutes into the match.
Patrick Valenzuela and Bruno Jumo also scored for MIMAROPA but Northern Mindanao, who opened their 2014 campaign with a 5-2 win over CARAGA, found consolation through John Bengay’s second half brace.
MIMAROPA will be entering the quarterfinals without suspension as they are yet to earn a card in the tournament.
“I told them to stick to defense but watch out for cards. Give no nonsense fouls,” Salmo said.
Today’s other results
Calabarzon 4 – 2 CAR
Western Visayas 11 – 0 ARMM