Pascol topple Bismark

Bismark captain Freddy Steven beating Pascol’s Albert Golopaul to the ball as his sibling, Philip, provides support during the final of the Wawens Cup at Lae Football Association Park on Sunday. Bismark lost 0-1. – Nationalpic by LARRY ANDREW

ALEX Kamen netted the winner to help Pascol to a 1-0 victory and deny Bismark back-to-back titles in the Wawens Cup men’s final at Lae Football Association Park on Sunday.
In other results, Bara beat Wawens Yellow 2-1 and Muddy Bay edged Bumneng 1-0 in the women’s and Under-17 finals respectively.
Lae’s biggest offseason soccer tournament attracted teams from as far as Huon Gulf’s Wampar and Salamaua, Menyamya, Finschhafen, and Madang’s Rai Coast.
The teams were Cousins, Sagir, Nadzab, Popdubi B Stone, Menyamya, Nasing and Bawak.
Fielding Papua New Guinea internationals and National Soccer League players, both Pascol and Bismark were locked in an even contest with neither side unable to penetrate the opposition defence.
But moments from halftime, PNG international Nigel Dabinyaba’s cross found Kamen who headed past Bismark goalkeeper Ishmael Pole for the decisive goal.
Bismark came strongly in the second half with Emmanuel Simon, Max Efale and captain Freddy Steven directing playing from midfield.
But the experience of Mosie Milubwa, Albert Golopaul and Darius Edwin saw Pascol step up their defence to deny Bismark’s strikers from scoring goals.
The second half remained scoreless as Daniel Tobem-captained Pascol saw out the win to claim their first Wawens Cup title.
Tobem told The National that they had been trying their best to win the title over the last seven seasons.
“We beat last year’s title holders as a team and we’re proud of it,” he said.
“We had the experience Dabinyaba, Edwin, Nirik and others who supported the younger players in our team. We’ll maintain our team and will come back in the next tournament to defend the title.”
Steven said their tournament preparations were not good despite winning their pool games.