UNIMAID Desert Warriors and FUT Minna Transformers have joined AAUA Luminaries and UNIBEN Royals in the quarterfinals of the ongoing Higher Institutions Football League (HiFL) organised by PACE Sports and Entertainment Marketing Limited.
UNIMAID defeated BUK Stallions 3-2 to qualify at home. Suleiman Ali scored in the 21st minute before StanbicIBTC Man-of-the-Match Uche Francis added the second in the 29th minute for the Desert Warriors. But Huzafia Mohammed and Mustapha Mustapha scored in the 19th and 37th minutes respectively for the Stallions to set up a thrilling second half before Bukar David of the Warriors scored in the 77th minute to put the game beyond the Stallions. UNIMAID Desert Warriors qualified on a 5-3 goals aggregate after winning both legs.
In another pulsating encounter in Minna, the Ahmed Usman Bosso led Transformers defeated the LAUTECH Hunters 3-2 to qualify for the next round after a goalless draw in the first leg in Ogbomosho. The Transformers scored three goals in the first half through StanbicIBTC Man-of-the-Match Abubakar Mahmud in the 22nd minute and 41st minutes and Nda Ogubile in the 37th minute. The Hunters however fought back bravely in the second half with goals from Owoade Joseph in the 46th minute and Aremo Mathew in the 81st minute.
Unfortunately, the Hunters could not get the equalizer needed for them to edge their opponent on the away goals rule as the game ended 3-2 on aggregate.
In his reaction after the games, Chief Strategy Officer at Pace Sports, Mr Goodness Onyejiaku said; “This fine display of sportsmanship gladdens our hearts. Again, our sponsors, StanbicIBTC, Nivea Men, Minimie and Bold have continued to demonstrate their love for youth development in Nigeria through their support for HiFL. While they pursue academic excellence, these youths have an opportunity to explore other talents thereby providing them with an array of choices as they grow into becoming the better persons they crave.”
In the other games, reigning champion UNICAL Malabites could only score one goal through Uloko Simon in the 45th minute against the UNIBEN Royals at the Abraham Ordia Stadium. The Malabites needed two goals to equalize and qualify on an away goals rule having scored two goals in the 4-2 loss in Benin.
The AAUA Luminaries also held the 2019 Super Four finalist OAU Giants to a 1-1 draw to qualify for the quarter-finals on the away goals rule in Ife. StanbicIBTC Man-of-the-Match Olaniyi Mayowa scored for the OAU Giants in the 55th minute before Olawale Oluwabunkunmi broke the hearts of the home fans with a late goal in the 92nd minute. The first leg in Akungba ended in a goalless draw.