Ceres-Negros FC came from a goal down in the second half to secure a 2-1 win over Kaya FC Iloilo last July 10 at the PFF Training Center in Carmona Cavite. Bienvenido Maranon scored a brace while Stephan Schrock took the Man of the match honors with two assists. Jovin Bedic scored the lone goal for the Iloilo squad.
It was Kaya who had the first chance after earning corner after an errant backpass. The ball from the corner landed to Alfred Osei whose volley was blocked by Super. Masa Omura followed up with a shot of his own but Roland Muller did well to collect.
Schrock had the first chance for Ceres-Negros in the 11th minute but his try from outside was collected by Michael Casas. Things got testy minutes later in the middle of the pitch which forced to referee to call the first of four cooling breaks in the match. Super and Mintah were booked by referee Jordan Mintah just before the break.
Another controversial sequence in the 18th prompted Ceres-Negros to complain to the referee. Mintah handled the ball in the Ceres box but only a goal kick was given.
Both teams struggled in the first half because very harsh conditions resulting to sluggish play and less chances for the rivals. Things picked up near the end when Arnel Amita was called for a foul on OJ Porteria. The substitute was sent off after a clarification from the fourth official.
Ceres had their clearest chance in the 45th minute with Maranon but his header sailed a yard wide of the post. Porteria had his own chance moments later but his attempt went straight to the keeper.
A deflected Schrock cross missed Maranon but Mike Ott recovered with his own attempt but Cases tapped it out to safety. The referee blew the halftime whistle with the rivals still scoreless after the break.
Kaya Iloilo turned the game on its head minutes into the second half with a lovely goal from Jovin Bedic. The Kaya attacker broke free from his marker to volley in a left footer to the far post.
The Busmen tried to recover immediately but Maranons attempt off the turn was read well by the keeper. Ott had a chance of his own in the 56th minute but his attempt sailed over the bar.
The Negros squad piled the pressure but the Iloilo representatives did very well to quell the onslaught. It was in the 68th minute when the busmen broke through after Schrock sliced into the Kaya defense to draw out Casas before crossing into Maranon who cleverly nudged the ball to the back of the net for the equalizer.
Ott almost put Ceres-Negros ahead after he headed in a Schrock cross but it went straight to the keeper. They were not denied the next time after Maranon headed in another deep cross from Schrock to wrest back the lead from the Iloilo squad.
The Azkals captain broke free again from the defense before whipping another cross for Maranon but Jalsor Soriano cleared the danger. A free kick just outside the box allowed Mintah a header but his attempt bounced off the woodwork.
A counter from Ceres-Negros saw Schrock tripped inside the box but the referee waved off calls for a penalty. Both teams tried to conjure some chances in the end but Ceres-Negros held on for the 2-1 victory.
The win put Ceres-Negros at the number one spot with 16 points, level with Kaya Iloilo, but with a better goal difference and win over the second placed team. The Busmen will play its next match on Saturday against the Airmen also in Carmona.