Clinical Ceres Negros prevail over spirited Davao Aguilas in Pana-ad

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Ceres Negros proved to be the better team in the second half after a scintillating first half saw both sides almost even in definitely one of the best matches ever this PFL season.

The first half has been a showcase of good football from both sides with Ceres showing their trademark possession and short passes while Davao threatening with their quick counterattack.

Ceres got the first taste of a real in the chance 11th minute as OJ Porteria was able to latch on to a great pass as he latched on to Manny Ott for the goal but it was disallowed as linesman ruled it out as an offside.

In the 23rd minute Bienvenido Maranon seemed to have got one in the bag as he was able to smartly dink the ball to evade the Davao Aguilas defense only to find the ball go teasingly wide.

In the 27th minute Davao Aguilas could have scored if not for Jeffrey Christiaens being at the right place at the right time in front of goal to clear a shot with Doblas already beaten.

Davao could have had a legitimate case for a penalty in the 34th minute but it wasn’t called despite the visitors’ appeals. On the other end Ceres went on the attack but a cross just precariously sailed across Davao Aguilas goalmouth.

A few minutes after it was Davao’s turn to provide a scary spell for Ceres, with Odawara seeing goal only for Martin Steuble to intervene at the last moment to clear the shot.

Phil Younghusband then followed a shot of his own in the 38th minute but his attempt went straight into Doblas.

Ceres then retaliated with their own enterprising runs towards Davao’s final third with a golden chance being presented to OJ Porteria only to see his shot deflected wide for a corner.

Just a moment after the breakthrough came as Rota fouled Maranon inside the box for the referee to award Ceres a spot kick. OJ Porteria was the one who took the attempt as he was able to successfully convert to give Ceres a slim lead heading into the halftime break.

In the second half, Ceres seemed to have switched another gear as the hosts continued to give Davao problems in dealing their lightning runs from the flanks.

Maranon was able to carve out a clever attempt in the 51st minute producing a dink that fully beat Davao keeper Ronilo Bayan only for the ball to sail frustratingly wide of the far post.

Six minutes after, it was Mike Ott’s turn to provide the threat but his shot from an angle was well saved.

What followed was another end to end stuff as both teams traded runs and attempts, with James Younghusband unleashing a rasping shot from outside the box only to go way off the mark.

But come the hour was the man of the hour as a clinical finish by Maranon off a well crafted service from Nazari doubled Ceres’ lead.

At this point Ceres were able to stamp their authority as eight minutes later, Bienvenido got his second goal of the match with Porteria the provider to give the hosts an unassailable 3-0 lead.

Phil Younghusband could have gotten a consolation goal late in the game but his spectacular volley went agonisingly over the bar.

The win puts Ceres Negros on top of the league standings leapfrogging Kaya Iloilo after the latter fell to a 3-1 beating against cellar-dwellers Global Cebu.

Ceres vs Davao result table

Ceres Negros will next visit Stallion Laguna on May 26 while Davao Aguilas will face Kaya Iloilo once again in an away fixture on June 2.

Related article: Global Cebu seize win against 9-man Kaya Iloilo

Photo credit: Philippines Football League