Ceres-La Salle on verge of UFL double, faces Kaya FC in Cup final

CERES-LA Salle and Kaya FC dispatched their respective semifinal foes in contrasting fashion on Tuesday night to set up a United Football League Cup title match at the Rizal Memorial Stadium.

Ceres tripped Loyola Meralco, 1-0, to move on the verge of a double championship after the Bacolod-based side ruled the league last month.

Kaya, on the other hand, forced extra time and won a penalty shootout against Stallion FC, 5-4, to clinch the second final spot.

The final, which stakes the second ticket to the Asian Football Confederation Cup next year, is set on Friday night.

Orman Okunaiaya’s goal in the 70th minute spelled the difference for Ceres in a nip-and-tuck affair against the Sparks.

“The team showed great commitment to the game plan which we were able to execute until the end,” Ceres coach Ali Go said.

Kaya, though, had to rally from a two-goal second-half deficit to force extra time, before Diego Barrera scored the equalizing goal to forge the shootout.

Nick O’Donnell proved a defensive force, denying Ian Araneta’s penalty attempt as Kaya advanced.

“They (Stallion) sure made it hard for us to get this win,” Kaya manager Paul Tolentino said. “It’s all about that AFC Cup spot. And the only way to get that spot is by winning this tournament.”

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