Chicos United wins game but loses title
A technical boo-boo handed San Roque Football Club (SRFC) the crown in the Ladies Open of the 9th Thirsty Football Cup yesterday at the University of San Carlos-Technological Center (USC-TC) field.
The Zagu-sponsored SRFC lost to Chicos United of Cagayan de Oro, 3-2, via penalty shootout in the finals after the regulation match ended in a 1-all draw.
But after the awarding, organizers found out that Chicos United used an unlisted player during its games after coach Pocholo Lanza failed to list Jessa Marie Sumagpao in the team’s official lineup.
Under the tournament ground rules, a player cannot play if his or her name is not in the official lineup submitted to the officials.
Chicos United team captain Marna Pabillore, a two-time Southeast Asian Games gold medalist in karatedo, said the team feels disgusted with the decision.
“We came here using our own money and they just beat us because of technicality. I think that’s unfair,” said Pabillore, also a karatedo silver medalist in the previous Asian Games.
“We admit we forgot to list one player, but they (organizers) should have told us before the start of the tournament or disqualified us after our first game. It’s just painful to have gone through six games without a loss then celebrate our championship victory only to have it stripped after the awarding.”
SRFC was declared champions while defending champion USC B was declared first runner-up.
Chicos United actually dominated the 7-a-side football festival if not for the listing error.
The team topped its group by winning two matches and salvaging a draw during the eliminations. They beat Sacred Heart School-Ateneo de Cebu (SHS-AdC) in the quarterfinals and defeated defending champions USC B in the semifinals.
Sumagpao, one of only two players not from Cagayan de Oro, scored the second goal during the penalty shootout. The other scorers for Chicos United were Ebonnie Urtal and Joanna Sabid.
Sumagpao and Sabid are from Iloilo. Pabillore said the team asked both to play since they lacked players.
Pabillore said having just arrived yesterday and immediately seeing action made things a bit chaotic, which is why Sumagpao’s name was not included in the official lineup.
“We feel bad knowing that they are from out of town,” said Chad Songalia, one of the organizing committee. “But we have to follow the ground rules.”
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