TongaFootball > News > TFA National League > Marist sinks Popua in league opener

Marist sinks Popua in league opener

Marist ran in five goals in the second half to mark an outright lead in the challenging tournament that only features the top four teams of Tonga Football Association’s Major League Premier Division competition.
Marist’s fierce attacks were directed by the brilliant running and passing skills of their talented midfielders, which sent Sione Tovo in to score early in the opening minutes.
Popua came back strong but failed to ignite against a very stinging defense that kept them scoreless in the first spell.
However, Marist started the second half in the best possible style by firing their big guns making them almost unstoppable.
Winger Siosifa Moimoi netted the second goal in the 59th minute followed by another brilliant shot by Pita Savieti two minutes later.
‘Ateneo Fe’ao move upfront and put in a double in the 64th and the 70th minute to stretch the lead to 5-0, before Sione Teu rounded off the scoring festival with a long range shot 15 minutes from time.
Popua finally registered their name on the scoreboard in the last 10 minute from a dazzling effort by center Sione Filiai.
The result is sure to send a shockwave through the newly established four-team tournament.
In the competition’s other match Lotoha’apai United survived a scare before recording a hard fought 2-1 victory over Ha’amoko United Youth in a very tight contest.
Playing for the first time since winning the Major League title last year, United fought back vigorously to score a last minute goal to maintain their control of the only team to qualify to the region’s most premium club competition.
Ha’amoko took first blood just nine minutes from kick-off, thanks to brilliant header by center forward Kaloo Tauasi.
That gave the 2012 Major League finalists a bit of breathing space while they continued trying to spoil their opponent’s work but United survived and managed to step up against the challenge.
United’s charge finally reached the comfort zone in the 44th minute when their 15-year-old striker Hemaloto Polovili finished off a brilliant one-two combination with veteran centre Kilifi Uele to level the score at 1-all at half-time.
Both teams canceled out each other in most of the second half until the 88th minute when winger Samisoni Mafi found the net again for United to celebrate another tremendous victory.
Uele sees the result as a bit of luck.
“We started a bit rusty but luckily we managed to fight back and get the result we wanted,” Uele said.
“It was a hard fought win but it gives us a clear image of what we need to work on for our next game.”
Round two will resume this Saturday and United will face-off Marist while Popua takes on Ha’amoko.
Both games will be played at Lototonga Soccer Center at 9:00am and 11:00 am respectively.