Stephan Shrock and Jeffrey Christiaens combined forces in the endgame to lift Ceres Negros FC past Global Cebu FC, 1-nil, in their return to the Philippines Football League (PFL) on Saturday at the Panaad Park and Stadium in Bacolod City.
Shrock weaved his football magic as he sent a splendid cross from the right side to the box before a lurking Christiaens ran into the ball and hit the lone goal in the 83rd minute.
With the win, Ceres Negros picked up the three points in its second game and upped its record to 1-1-0 win-draw-loss for a total of four points.
Global Cebu, which came from a dismal exit in the Asia Football Confederation (AFC) Cup, continued to struggle as it absorbed its first loss in the inaugural season though it remained on the second place for the moment with seven points on a 2-1-1 card.
Fresh off their historic win in the AFC Cup, the Busmen bucked a shaky start as Iain Ramsay persisted on attacking the left flank and sending dangerous crosses to the middle but Bienvenido Marañon was rusty on his headers.
Global’s Patrick Deyto showed flashes of his goalkeeping brilliance beginning in the 28th minute as he came up with three huge saves in a span of three minutes.
The Cebuanos then displayed their counter-attacking prowess with Misagh Bahadoran dishing out a fine layoff to Shu Sasaki, who launched the ball just inches wide the left post as the two powerhouse teams settled for a goalless first half.
Ramsay led again the offensive for the Negrenses as he stole the ball from Wesley dos Santos then found himself wide open but Deyto once more pull off a superb save in the 50th.
Just as when it appeared that the Visayan clasico would not live up to its billing, Shrock substituted for Omid Nazari in the 62nd before collaborating with Christiaens for the match-winner.
PFL action continues today as Kaya FC-Makati hosts Stallion Laguna FC at 4 p.m. at the University of Makati Football Stadium even as JPV Marikina tackles Ilocos United FC at the same time at the Biñan Football Stadium in Laguna.