by J.P. Devetori
Universitario secured a 3-1 victory over 1st place Alianza Atletico to cut the deficit from 5 points to 2 points. After Sport Huancayo’s victory yesterday, the “U”‘s new deficit is 3 points which is still 1 game behind. With 6 match weeks to go (5 matches left), the “U” is on track to return to the top of the Apertura table and must keep on winning. The goal is still on: Win both the Apertura and Clausura to win our 27th league title.
The cremas trailed 0-1 in the 23rd minute after a miscue deflection from Angel Cayetano that led a wide open Joaquin Aguirre to give the Sullana club a 0-1 lead. The game was leveled 5 minutes later after a handball by Kevin Ruiz that led to a Nelinho Quina penalty goal to equalize the match at 1-1. 4 minutes before halftime, Alex Valera scored a beautiful header goal and the immaculate pass came from Alfonso Barco to give the “U” a 2-1 lead at the half.
Universitario had an early advantage in the 2nd half with a 1-man advantage as Jesus Arismendi of Alianza Atletico received a double yellow card. The cremas used that advantage to lock down the Sullana club from any offensive plays and Valera managed to score the insurance goal in the 83rd minute with an Aldo Corzo assist.
It was, by far, the most important win for Universitario this season as they eye on returning to the top of the Apertura table. Now down by 3 points behind number 1 Sport Huancayo, the “U” seeks to keep winning as they visit Carlos Manucci in Trujillo while Sport Huancayo hosts Cienciano. Also, Melgar and Alianza Atletico sit at 2nd and 3rd place behind Huancayo respectively with 25 points each (1 point behind Huancayo). Melgar hosts ADT and Alianza Atletico hosts Sport Boys, their results could have an impact on this Apertura race.
In Jorge Araujo’s few games as manager of Universitario, he has brought better player chemistry as well as personal improvement especially on Alfonso Barco. Barco was seen as a bust throughout the season and has now blossomed the past few games as well as returning play making intelligence of Aldo Corzo. The more we keep this up, the better chance we can snag the Apertura position soon.
Next match will be on Sunday, May 15th at 4:30pm at Trujillo vs Carlos Manucci.