Ceres-Negros FC succumbed to 1-3 defeat against the Davao Aguilas in their opening match of the Copa Paulino Alcantara last September 1 at the Rizal Memorial Stadium.
The Aguilas capitalized on an error-filled performance from the Ceres backline which gifted Davao three goals in the match.
Ceres-Negros dominated possession in the first half which led to many half chances for the busmen. Davao was poised defensively which led to a great tactical battle on the pitch.
The busmen had their best chance in the 36th minute when Blake Powell broke away from the defense and forced patrick Deyto into a fine save. The Aussie had another crack off the rebound but his shot was wide of the target.
The Aguilas took the lead minutes later when a weak backpass by Martin Steuble allowed Matt Hartmann to chip the ball over Roland Muller.
A lovely through ball towards an unmarked Hartman on the wings forced Muller off his line but his clearance bounced off the Davao player and fell to Phil Younghusband who lobbed the ball into the open goal in the 38th minute.
Ceres-Negros earned a lifeline just minutes after the break when a Davao player was adjudged for handball in the box. Powell made no mistake from twelve yards to earn a goal back for the home squad.
Patrick Reichelt had a good chance to equalize in the 70th minute but his header off a Steuble cross went straight to the keeper.
Muller was forced into a fine save minutes later when Hartmann was given a perfect ball on the wings. The Ceres keeper went of his line to deny the second goal of the Davao player.
A fantastic run from Reichelt allowed the winger to cut the ball back to Marañon but the Spaniard curled his shot wide.
The Aguilas secured the victory in the 76th minute when a ball from the back bounced awkwardly on Joshua Dutosme’s head which bounced towards Taj Minniecon who restored their squad’s two-goal cushion.
Negros’ hopes of a comeback was extinguished when Marañon was given a straight red after a retaliation to a Davao player. Ceres-Negros introduced Mike Ott with ten minutes left but the disadvantage was to great to overcome and Davao went away with three points in their first cup match.
“We made many mistakes today which cost us the game,” said Ceres Assistant Ian Treyes. “We have two weeks till the next match so we’ll try to correct our errors before our next assignment.”
Ceres-Negros will meet Stallion Laguna on September 15 for their second cup match. They will again face the Laguna squad on the 19th before completing their assignment versus Davao on the 22nd.
All Ceres-Negros group stage matches will be held at the Rizal Memorial Stadium.