Pinay booters make history after bagging first SEAG medal in 37 years

The national women’s football team came back from a goal down to defeat Myanmar, 2-1, to end its 31st Southeast Asian Games campaign Saturday, May 21 with a bronze medal in Quang Ninh, Vietnam.

Photo from PWNFT

Sarina Bolden and Quinley Quezada scored with less than 20 minutes left as the Philippines was able to make up for conceding a goal off a penalty in the first half and secure a podium finish before a big crowd at Cam Pha Stadium.

It will be the country’s first bronze in women’s football since the 1985 Bangkok Games when only three teams competed under a round-robin format.

Coach Alen Stajcic’s side also pulled off a reversal of the 2019 meeting for bronze between the two countries at the Rizal Memorial Stadium.

During the match, Quezada’s opener went for naught when Myanmar struck twice with about 10 minutes to go.

This time, the Philippines fell behind in the 24th when the referee signaled at the spot after defenders Hali Long and Malea Cesar collided with a Myanmar player.

Win Theingi Tun scored a low attempt off goalkeeper Olivia McDaniel to make it 1-0 for Myanmar.

It took some time before the ladies pulled one back in the 73rd when Carleigh Frilles found Bolden, who fired a shot that first hit the gloves of Myanmar goalkeeper May Zin New before the ball bounced inside the goal.

The scoreline stood only until the 76th when Quezada fired a left-footed shot in the middle of the box that put the Philippines ahead in stunning fashion.

The Filipinas won after a campaign that began with a 5-0 romp of Cambodia followed by a 2-1 loss to host Vietnam in the group stage and a 3-0 loss to Thailand in the semis.

Getting the bronze should give the squad a confidence-booster in the early preparation for next year’s FIFA Women’s World Cup. The Pinay squad is also slated to host the AFF Women’s Championship in July.