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    Stallions put an end to Loyola Sparks' UFL title hopes with second-half fightback

    Jun 10, 2014

    STALLION FC frustrated Loyola Meralco, 3-1, on Tuesday night at the Emperador Stadium to officially eliminate the Sparks from title contention in the United Football League.

    The deposed champions overhauled an early deficit with a swashbuckling second-half showing to pull off the reversal that reduced the title battle to a two-horse race between favorite Global FC and a Kaya FC side that’s just hanging on.

    Junior Gaye, Belinga Blanchard, and Masood Shadideh were all on target for the resurgent Stallions, who extended their undefeated streak to almost three months, a stretch where they compiled six wins and five draws.

    Stallion stayed in fourth spot with 38 points in 22 matches overall.

    It was the second loss in four games for the Sparks, who tumbled to third spot with 43 points and squandered a chance at a double championship after ruling the UFL Cup late last year.

    Using the match as part of their Singapore Cup buildup, the Sparks unlocked the Stallion defense just 12 minutes into the game courtesy of skipper James Younghusband.

    But it was a tale of two halves as Gaye equalized three minutes after intermission, before Blanchard struck the go-ahead goal in the 57th minute. Shadideh added an insurance strike 10 minutes before stoppage time.

    Earlier, Green Archers United solidified their hold of fifth spot with a 1-0 victory over eighth-running Socceroo.

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