Steven Anotado struck the lone goal as University of Santo Tomas (UST) stunned defending champion Ateneo De Manila University, 1-0, to nab the solo lead in the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) Season 80 men’s football tournament on Sunday at the Rizal Memorial Football Stadium in Manila.
Anotado scored the match-winner deep in the second half as the Golden Booters leaped atop the eight-team table with 10 points on an improved 3-1-0 win-draw-loss record.
It was Anotado’s first goal after two years of nursing two anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries.
Both squads had their chances in the first half but Ateneo goalkeeper AJ Arcilla and UST custodian Zaldy Abraham came up with saves to keep a scoreless stalemate.
A nip-and-tuck affair ensued following the restart until veteran striker Anotado received a fine through ball from AJ Pasion then drained the eventual game-winning goal in the 76th minute.
The Blue Booters suffered their second loss though they stayed at No. 4 with six points built on two wins.
Meanwhile, Far Eastern University (FEU) frustrated University of the Philippines (UP) as they battled to a 1-1 draw.
Tamaraw Booters’ winger Donggyu Jung scored in the 75th to negate the early strike of Maroon Booters’ forward Jeremiah Borlongan.
With the result, FEU hiked its tally to two points on No. 7 while erstwhile leading UP dropped to No. 2 with 10 points and an inferior goal difference against UST.
In the day’s opening game, National University (NU) posted its breakthrough win at the expense of the tough-luck Adamson University, 1-0.
Team skipper Patrick Valenzuela notched the lone goal in the 37th to power the Bulldogs to their first victory in four outings.
With the win, NU joined idle University of the East at No. 5 with identical four points and minus two-goal difference.
The Soaring Falcons remained winless in four outings.