DESPERATE to stay in top flight next season, Philippine Army momentarily created breathing room from direct relegation Saturday night by stunning Nomads, 3-0, in the United Football League at the Emperador Stadium in Taguig.
Long been languishing at the bottom of the 10-team field, the Troopers finally dislodged military rival Air Force from ninth spot after Meliton Pelayo, Boogie Margarse, and Erwin Silvestre each scored a goal apiece.
The last-placed team at the end of the tournament gets demoted to Division 2, although the ninth-ranked squad is also in danger of getting relegated as it faces the Division 2 runner up in a two-game series for a place in Division 1.
Pelayo opened the scoring three minutes into the game, before Margarse, the former national team mainstay, followed suit in the 40th minute.
Silvestre completed the surprising rout against the struggling Nomads with his strike nine minutes after the restart.
Nomads remained in eigth place with 13 points.