Philippine women's football team in the Asian Games filipinas

Philippine women’s football team in the Asian Games. –PWNT/PFF

The Philippine women’s football team saw its Hangzhou Asian Games women’s football campaign come to an end with a harsh 8-1 quarterfinal loss to Japan amid rainy conditions on Saturday at Wenzhou Sports Center Stadium.

Reduced to 10 players after the dismissal of team captain Hali Long, the Filipinas were forced to play catch up and eventually on the defensive as Japan racked up a number of goals in the second half that eventually covered up what was a competitive battle amid the heavy downpour.

A second-half goal by Sarina Bolden in between Japan’s second-half rampage, her fourth in the competition and a record-extending 26th, proved to be one of the few bright spots for coach Mark Torcaso’s side that bid adieu following the country’s Asian Games debut.

Japan advanced to the semifinals to take on host China while the other pairing pits North Korea against Uzbekistan.

The Filipinas made it to the knockout stage after placing second in Group E with two wins sandwiched by a 5-1 defeat to South Korea.

Torcaso’s first major tournament as Filipinas coach resulted in a spot in the last eight after closing out the group stage with a 3-0 win over Myanmar. It was the first time that a Philippine football team made it to the quarters since the men’s squad in the 1958 edition in Tokyo.

Heavy underdogs coming in, the Filipinas kept the match scoreless until things took a significant turn when Long was given a straight red card in the 27th minute that gave Japan the edge in manpower.

Isabella Pasion was later called for a handball inside the box and Momoko Tanikawa fired from the spot to put Japan in front in the 39th.

Action resumed after a weather delay due to the heavy rain and Japan would double the lead as Haruka Osawa capitalized on Bolden being dispossessed inside the box to score in the 58th.

Remina Chiba made it 3-0 in the 65th but Bolden pulled one back two minutes later that gave slim hopes of a Filipinas rally.

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That wasn’t to be as Mami Euno scored a penalty in the 76th, followed by two more in the 78th and 81st as Japan made sure there was no doubt in the outcome.

But Japan was far from done with Chiba completing a brace entering stoppage time and Euno adding a four goal to her tally shortly before the final whistle.

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