Someone asked me how my blog and newspaper column came to be titled "Bleachers Brew". It's like this, it's an amalgam of sorts of two things: The bleachers area in the stadium/arena where I used to sit when I would watch baseball, football, and basketball games and Miles Davis' great jazz album Bitches Brew. That's how it got culled together. I originally planned on calling it "The View from the Big Chair" that is a nod to Tears For Fear's second album, Songs from the Big Chair. So there.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

UP pips FEU for UAAP Men’s Football lead as UST falls

UP's Jinggoy Valmayor gets ready to unload for his first goal of the UAAP football season.

UP pips FEU for UAAP Men’s Football lead as UST falls
by rick olivares pic by brosi gonzales

February 9, 2012
Ateneo de Manila University

For the University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons, the world is all right again. Jinggoy Valmayor rediscovered his scoring touch. They beat the Far Eastern University Tamaraws 1-nil in a tough match that saw the Morayta-squad reduced to 10 men yet dominate the second half with a relentless barrage of shots on goal. And they are now on top of the standings after seven games after short-handed UST lost to La Salle, 1-0.

In the 29th minute, UP midfielder Jay Eusebio was poised to go one-on-one with FEU defender Noli Chavez but the latter tried to close him down. What ensued was a violent collision that knocked both players to the pitch with Eusebio taking the worst of it. Referee Rey Bitaga cautioned Chavez and sent him off after he was shown a yellow card earlier (along with Valmayor for trash talking).

The reed thin Eusebio was taken out for some medical treatment but it didn’t take too long before he asked back in. And right on cue, he fed Valmayor with a nifty pass that split two FEU defenders. A little 1v1 and Valmayor ditched central back Maurice de Leon then blasted a shot past Tamaraws keeper Ronnie Aguisanda for his first goal of the season.

It has been a frustrating season for the sophomore striker of the Maroons after an incredible rookie season that saw him net nine goals aside from bagging the top scorer and rookie of the year plums in the UAAP.

“At last!” celebrated UP coach Anto Gonzales with a fist pump following Valmayor’s goal. It was UP’s second successive win following their late win over Ateneo last weekend and a win over FEU would see them in the driver’s seat for the first time all season.

Despite being down to 10 men, the Tamaraws fought valiantly and actually owned the second half. The rookie-laded FEU squad took nine shots on goal but none could get past UP keeper Tyrone Caballes who was simply superb this day. FEU’s best chance to draw level was in the 50th minute when top striker Jon Melliza took a through ball from Eric Giganto and beat every UP defender but fired wide left.

Melliza also had a brilliantly struck free kick from 25 yards out parried away by Caballes in the 85th minute to preserve UP’s lead.

The day was also a first for the hapless University of the East Red Warriors who claimed the luckless Ateneo Blue Eagles as its first victim of the season. UE’s Fitch Florence Arboleda scored on a penalty shot in the 77th minute to give his side not only their first win of the season but also their first goal of the tournament. Ateneo outplayed UP last week but conceded a late penalty to the Fighting Maroons last week that nemesis Ayi Aryee translated into a goal. This time around, it was UE’s turn to capitalize of Ateneo’s series of late game blunders.

In the second match of the triple-header, La Salle also won its second straight match after Gio Diamante scored (also on a penalty after a poor tackle from behind by UST central back Ronald Batisla-Ong). It was Batisla-Ong’s second boner in as many weeks. In their final match of the first round against UP, Batisla-Ong’s clumsy back pass led to a Green Archers goal. Without striker Ojay Clarino who was suspended following a straight red card in their match last week against an FEU player, UST struggled to get decent shots on goal. The Growling Tigers’ loss coupled with UP’s win saw them fall to second place while La Salle moved up to third place.

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