Kaya ships nine to Mendiola to keep PFL '24 pole position

Photo from PFL

by Drew Malihan

MANILA - Defending champions Kaya FC-Iloilo delivers another dominant showing as they score nine goals to a struggling Mendiola FC 1991 side Sunday inside the Rizal Memorial Stadium.

Shuto Komaki slotted a goal in the ninth minute to open the floodgates before Eric Esso added his own in the 16th minute.

Striker Robert Lopez Mendy added two of his own with the first beating keeper Marc Pellejo in a one-on-one in the 18th, and a Mar Diano-assisted one beating the defense in the 28th minute.

A heated exchange between Audie Menzi and Amir Aningalan saw them earn each a red card as both squads were reduced to ten men in the 43rd minute.

Janjan Melliza and Kaishu Yamazaki opened the scoring for Kaya in the second half, before long-serving Mendiola midfielder Hamed Hajimahdi pulled one back for the Brave Men, 6-1, after 5 minutes.

Komaki will find his second goal in the 71st minute, with longtime Kaya captain Jovin Bedic adding himself to the scoresheet four minutes later.

Mendiola scored an own-goal to give Kaya a 9-1 advantage as a Bandiougou Konate pass to Yamazaki found Kieth Edusalan, who intended a pass to Pellejo but was not received and instead went to their  own net.

The win keeps Kaya ahead of the title race with 25 points with an 8-1-0 record, while Mendiola found themselves with a 2-1-6 record and seven points to their name.

Kaya will try to build more on their goal difference when they meet Manila Montet, while Mendiola will try to arrest their three-game lose skid against Loyola, both on Sunday.

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