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Ateneo takes Game 1

Isaac Go is turning out to be Ateneo de Manila University’s “Mr. Clutch.” The six-foot-seven center once again completed a crucial play in the closing seconds to lift the Blue Eagles to a tension-filled 76-70 victory over defending champion De La Salle University in Game 1 of the best-of-three finals of the University Athletic Association [...] The post Ateneo takes Game 1 appeared first on The Manila Times Online......»»

Category: newsSource: manilatimes manilatimesNov 25th, 2017

HEADS UP: 10 sporting events to watch out for in 2018

2017 has come and gone, and it delivered some exciting sporting moments that has every sports fan clamoring for more. Worry not, though, as 2018 looks primed to satisfy even the most die-hard Pinoy sports aficionado with its bevy of local and international sporting events. Let's welcome the upcoming year with 10 of the most exciting sporting events to watch out for this 2018.   NCAA 93 & UAAP 80 VOLLEYBALL The cagers are out, and the spikers are in. Volleyball season begins this January 4 with NCAA season 93, followed by the 81st season of the UAAP this February. NCAA volleybelles are once again ready to take center court, and the defending women's champion Arellano University Lady Chiefs, led by heavy hitters Jovie Prado and Regine Arocha are banking on their undisputed team play to propel them to another title. Playing inspired volleyball throughout the season, the Lady Chiefs stunned the thrice-to-beat San Sebastian Lady Stags in the Finals last year, ultimately ending Grethcel Soltones' collegiate career with a dud. Rising stars like San Beda's Ces Racraquin, JRU's Karen Montojo also make the upcoming NCAA volleyball season worth waiting for. UAAP volleyball begins a month later the NCAA tournament, but expect the field to be even more tumultuous. With no clear-cut number 2 team to challenge the two-time defending champions DLSU Lady Spikers, it will be a toss-up against basically the other seven schools to step up. Dangerous squads include the much-improved Adamson Lady Falcons, last year's pleasant surprise UST, the dynastic Ateneo Lady Eagles, and the intact NU Lady Bulldogs and FEU Lady Tamaraws. NBA ALL-STAR GAME & 2018 NBA FINALS The annual showcase of the NBA's brightest stars just got a major revamp. That's right, the league has done away with the traditional East-West teams, and will now have a playground-type pool selection of players between its two captains when the exhibition tips off in Los Angeles. This raises a lot of interesting questions: Will the captains pick their teammates or will they go with a more controversial pick and select a rival? Will we able to know the order of the draft? Will this actually work in making the game better? While answers to those questions might not be answered until a few months, one thing's for sure, the NBA Finals, the spectacle that actually counts, will be epic. Will we be treated to Golden State Warriors vs Cleveland Cavaliers Pt. 4? Or will another squad swoop in to spoil the party? The league has indeed improved, with surprising teams like the Milwaukee Bucks, the Indiana Pacers, the Detroit Pistons out in the East already staking claim to playoff spots, and the Wild, Wild, West staying true to its monicker. The Houston Rockets and the perennial powerhouse San Antonio Spurs are still the favorites to pull the rug under the Warriors, while the Oklahoma City Thunder is right behind. Either way, with months of hoops already invested in it, the NBA Finals will surely be another explosive one, as it always is.   HOMECOMING QUEEN Alyssa Valdez spent the majority of 2017 overseas, spreading her wings in Taiwan with volleyball club Attack Line. This 2018 though, The Phenom plans on staying in the Philippines, armed with two year’s worth of international experience to focus on her home club team in the Creamline Cool Smashers.  "Next year, I'm planning to focus sa Creamline. Just this year, I travelled a lot talaga. They supported me throughout, esepcially doon sa National Team stint ko. They sacrificed a lot for me talaga. I think I have to focus sa team ko talaga,” she said last week.Alyssa Valdez just got scarier.   PINOY HOOP DREAMS: REMY MARTIN, KOBE PARAS  Two proudly Pinoy ballers based in the U.S. set out this 2018 to continue shooting for our island nation’s humble hoop dreams. Kobe Paras is still serving residency this 2017-2018 season with the California State University-Northridge Matadors, but his development is sure to be a joy to watch. The 6’6” Pinoy swingman accomplished a tour of duty with Gilas Pilipinas earlier in the year, and many Pinoys saw why we should all be excited about high-flying forward. Remy Martin, a 5’11” point guard dazzled in his first few games with the Arizona State Sun Devils, with his athleticism, explosiveness and feisty defense. The Filipino-American cager is proud of his roots and hopes to represent flag and country with Gilas Pilipinas in the future.   WHO (OR WHAT) IS NEXT FOR MANNY PACQUIAO? The never-ending saga of what’s next for Manny Pacquiao looks like it'll seep into 2018.  Following a rather controversial loss to Australian boxer Jeff Horn, Pacquiao has been “courting” the likes of Floyd Mayweather Jr. for a rematch, even taking to Instagram to ”greet” MMA superstar Conor McGregor before finally admitting that he’s been in talks with the Irish fighter’s camp. Whether he actually retires from boxing for good, or takes on another foe in the squared circle, one thing’s for sure: we’ll all have our eyes on Manny Pacquiao’s next move.   2018 WORLD CUP RUSSIA™ After four years, the best of world football will once again converge, this time in Russia to crown the Kings of the beautiful sport. The stage is set, the groups are finalized, and the 32 squads are promising the best 30-day football extravaganza in the hopes of dethroning defending champions Germany this June. Some group stage clashes to look out for are Germany vs Mexico, England vs Belgium, Portugal vs Spain, to name a few. June couldn’t come soon enough.   CHRISTIAN STANDHARDINGER'S PBA DEBUT No PBA rookie has probably come into the league as pro-ready as the Filipino-German standout Christian Standhardinger. The 6’9” big man was the consensus top overall pick of the 2017 PBA draft, and was also at the center of the controversial trade that sent Kia Picanto’s rights to the number 1 selection to the already-dominant San Miguel. While the trade did go down, so did former commissioner Chito Narvasa. Standhardinger’s entry to the PBA has come at a cost, but San Miguel is more than ready to wait one more conference to bulk up their already stacked squad. Seeing Standharinger play alongside 6’11” center and reigning MVP June Mar Fajardo, versatile forward Arwind Santos, and the Beermen’s bevy of guards in Alex Cabagnot, Marcio Lassiter, and Chris Ross, is definitely a sight to see, just look at how he's tearing it up in the ASEAN Basketball League.    2018 ASIAN GAMES INDONESIA The Philippines’ less than stellar performance at the 2017 Southeast Asian Games was met with widespread flak. Not directed at our athletes however, but aimed at our sports development and governing body for its subpar work in getting our sports representatives ready. While the 2018 Asian Games isn’t so far away, a handful of Pinoy medalists from the SEA Games are going into the continental meet with high hopes. After dominating the SEA Games’ triathlon event, our Filipino endurance athletes, led by gold medalists Kim Mangrobang, and Nikko Huelgas, are once again primed to take home hardware. Marathoner Mary Joy Tabal, and boxers John Marvin, and Eumir Marcial, all gold medalists at Malaysia, are all bright spots that could soon unravel into full-fledged stars come 2018.   GILAS PILIPINAS IN THE FIBA WORLD CUP QUALIFIERS It’s official, basketball is coming home to the Philippines this 2023 by way of the FIBA World Cup, but Gilas Pilipinas will first have to try its luck in the 2019 meet. After dealing with Chinese Taipei and Japan this 2017 for a perfect 2-0 slate in the qualifiers, Gilas Pilipinas still has to face the Japanese anew, and the powerhouse Australian team early in 2018. A good showing against these squads will help Gilas strengthen its bid to international basketball’s biggest stage before we actually host the event in six years’ time.   UAAP 81 BASKETBALL UAAP season 80 just came to an end, but the next season just got way more interesting. Aside from the title defense of the intact Ateneo Blue Eagles and their ongoing rivalry with La Salle, a certain move by a coach has shaken up the league. With Aldin Ayo reportedly accepting the job as the new head coach of the struggling University of Sto. Tomas, we might just be witnesses to the rebirth of the once proud basketball program under the fiery mentor. That, and the way the DLSU Green Archers can adjust from the departure of Ayo and former two-time MVP Ben Mbala, key cogs to their season 79 championship run. The tight race for the MVP award will also be one to watch, with Mbala gone, it’s up to the local stars to step up to the challenge......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 31st, 2017

Six standout local volleybelles of 2017

We’ve seen them shine this year whether in the collegiate stage, in the club leagues or even in the international scene. These six Pinay volleyball players took the sport’s limelight in the year that’s about to end.     DESIREE CHENG Desiree Cheng came into De La Salle University during the time bitter rival Ateneo de Manila University got the Lady Spikers’ number. From Seasons 76 to 77, Cheng saw her team fall prey to the might of the Lady Eagles in the UAAP Finals. Then redemption came in Season 78. Unfortunately, the 5-foot-8 spiker was forced to watch from the sidelines with an ACL tear as her crew reclaimed the crown. A year after, Cheng got her biggest break. DLSU lost most of its veteran core after Season 78 and needed another scoring option. Cheng heeded the call. Though Cheng struggled at the start of the eliminations, the hitter slowly got her groove back and delivered when DLSU needed offense in their sixth straight championship showdown against Ateneo. Cheng was the X-factor for the Ramil De Jesus-mentored squad during the series. Her contributions both on offense and floor defense played a huge part in the Lady Spikers’ series sweep of the Lady Eagles for the school’s 10th title. Cheng also helped F2 Logistics claim the Cargo Movers’ breakthrough Philippine Superliga Grand Prix title and a runner-up finish in the All-Filipino Conference.   ALYSSA VALDEZ Although Alyssa Valdez failed to claim a crown in the Premier Volleyball League this year and a continued title drought since 2016, the Phenom’s magic remains. She can still fill up game venues whenever she takes the court and 2017 proved as the former Queen Eagles’ biggest year in terms of her flourishing volleyball career. Valdez brought her talents abroad, landing a stint with 3BB Nakornnont in the Thai League and in the Thai-Denmark Superleague where her team finished third in both tournaments. After her appearance in Thailand, Valdez donned the Creamline jersey and led the Rebisco franchise to a bronze medal finish both in the PVL Reinforced and Open conferences. Valdez also had another tour of duty, playing for the national team in the AVC Asian Women’s Senior Volleyball Championship and the 29th Southeast Asian Games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The 24-year old hitter got another international gig when she was tapped by Attack Line to play in the Chinese-Taipei Volleyball League.          Outside volleyball, Valdez has a blooming relationship with basketball star Kiefer Ravena. If she’s not busy with her volleyball and other commitments, Valdez also drew attention as one of the newest member of the so-called PBA players’ WAGS (wives and girlfriends) cheering for Ravena and the NLEX Road Warriors.      DAWN MACANDILI She may be only 5-foot tall but Dawn Macandili stood alongside Asia’s volleyball giants this year. The De La Salle University libero was the catalyst in the Lady Spikers’ back-to-back UAAP championship run. Her pesky floor defense frustrated DLSU’s rivals while giving her teammates a good first ball to operate their lethal offense.  But her biggest showing was when she landed a spot in the national team that competed in the AVC Asian Senior Women’s Volleyball Championship and in the Kuala Lumpur SEA Games. A first-timer donning the national colors, Macandili did not disappoint as she earned the respect and admiration of Japanese coaches and trainers during the Nationals’ training camp in Japan. She performed even better when the PHI hosted the AVC Asian Seniors. Ms. Everywhere gave teams like Asian powerhouse Vietnam, Kazakhstan, South Korea and Thailand a hard time with her floor defense. All her efforts caught the eyes of the AVC tournament officials and she was rewarded with the historic 2nd Best Libero award. She made the final list of in the national team that participated in the SEA Games. Back in the local scene, Macandili helped F2 Logistics to runner-up finish in the PSL All-Filipino Conference and a breakthrough crown in the Grand Prix.    JAJA SANTIAGO Tall, powerful and versatile, Jaja Santiago is a force to reckon with.  At 6-foot-5, Santiago dominated the Premier Volleyball League Collegiate Conference as she led the National University Lady Bulldogs to a perfect championship run. She also bagged the conference’s Most Valuable Player award. Though NU failed to make it in the Final Four of UAAP for the second straight year, Santiago’s effort for the Lady Bulldogs was rewarded with a third straight Best Attacker award to go with the Best Scorer and Best Blocker recognitions. In the PSL, Santiago was a consistent scorer for the Foton Tornadoes in the All-Filipino Conference and the Grand Prix. Under the tutelage of Serbian import Moro Branislav, Santiago became an even more dangerous and versatile player. Aside from her natural position as a middle blocker, she can now wreak havoc on both wings the puts her height advantage to good use. She made it into the national team that competed in the AVC Asian Seniors and SEA Games and was the Nationals’ scoring ace. Santiago received an offer from Thai powerhouse Bangkok Glass but declined the offer to play in her last year with the Lady Bulldogs.             KIM FAJARDO Setter Kim Fajardo left winning legacy when she played her swan song for DLSU. It took her a few months to decide to play her fifth year with the Lady Spikers. Leading a young crew after the departure of the core of the Season 78 championship squad, Fajardo faced a tough challenge in the Taft-based squad’s title-retention bid. But the Batanguena proved her worth as a leader and the skipper rallied the Lady Spikers back into the Finals in a sixth straight collision against bitter rival Ateneo. Fajardo’s composure carried DLSU in a tough Game 1 match and again in the five-set title-clincher to complete the Lady Spikers’ series sweep of the Lady Eagles. She earned a spot in the national team as a starting setter. Fajardo steered F2 Logistics to its first PSL Grand Prix crown bagged the conference’s Best Setter award. She helped the Cargo Movers to a runner-up finish in the All-Filipino Conference.     JOVIELYN PRADO Silent but deadly. Jovielyn Prado may not be the typical vocal leader but her presence inside the court is enough to rally the Arellano University Lady Chiefs to meet their goals. The outside hitter proved her worth to the Lady Chiefs when she led the Legarda-based squad back on the NCAA women’s volleyball throne. A year removed from the title, Arellano U turned to Prado to provide the spark the Lady Chiefs needed to make another shot at the crown. Consistent, efficient and effective, Prado delivered for the Obet Javier-mentored squad. Arellano U advanced in the stepladder semifinals and dethroned College of St. Benilde to set up a date with thrice-to-beat, three-time Most Valuable Player Grethcel Soltones-led San Sebastian College. Undaunted even with a great series disadvantage, Prado played her best three games of the season to power the Lady Chiefs to an impressive sweep of the Lady Stags. Prado continued her great performance in the PVL Reinforced and Open Conference playing for the Power Smashers. She then bannered the Lady Chiefs to a bronze medal finish in the Collegiate Conference at the expense of UAAP team Adamson University.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles   .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 28th, 2017

Ateneo takes Game 1

Isaac Go is turning out to be Ateneo de Manila University’s “Mr. Clutch.” The six-foot-seven center once again completed a crucial play in the closing seconds to lift the Blue Eagles to a tension-filled 76-70 victory over defending champion De La Salle University in Game 1 of the best-of-three finals of the University Athletic Association [...] The post Ateneo takes Game 1 appeared first on The Manila Times Online......»»

Category: newsSource:  manilatimesRelated NewsNov 25th, 2017

Coach Aldin says DLSU peaking at the right time

De La Salle University will be well-rested and well-prepared when it takes on archrival Ateneo de Manila University in the Finals of the UAAP 80 Men’s Basketball Tournament. Having dispatched of Adamson University last Saturday, the Green Archers have had a whole week to rest and prepare. All this, while watching the Blue Eagles have to go through the eye of the needle against fighting Far Eastern University. Along with the rest and preparation, the Taft-based team believes that momentum is on their side – having rang off eight consecutive victories heading into the Finals. “I think we’re in a very good spot because we’re peaking at the right time. The players have been very, very responsible in terms of their commitment to our goal,” head coach Aldin Ayo said. They last lost on October 8, falling by one point to Ateneo. Since then, however, the defending champions have dominated. Asked about the difference from then to now, Ayo answered, “We’re focused. We’re just focused on the game plan especially on defense.” He then continued, “When we were in the first round, there were lots of distractions. In the second round, they just surrendered to the system so we overcame those distractions.” The head coach went on to mention how he considered Ben Mbala’s stint with the Cameroonian national team and Aljun Melecio’s bout with dengue to be distractions. Now, however, Mbala, Melecio, and all of DLSU are all focused in going back-to-back. With that, they need no more motivation. As Ayo put it, “Wala namang motivation kundi championship e. yun lang.” He then continued, “Wala nang kung ano-anong mga hugot. Championship, yun lang.” --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 24th, 2017

UST coach Sablan: It takes at least three years to rebuild

Since UST Growling Tigers head coach Boy Sablan took the helm in June 2016, he was aware of the monumental task of taking a squad depleted of star players to victories in the UAAP. Thus far, he has only registered three victories against 24 losses. With a rag-tag squad of players, the Growling Tigers are facing history as the first team to finish a season undefeated, only to go winless later.  Not given the luck of having star players in his squad, Sablan said that the team is still in a state of rebuild after the departure of star players Kevin Ferrer, Karim Abdul, and Ed Daquioag. “Sabi ng isang kataas-taasang pari sa amin, rebuilding process, it takes three years, at least. Noong nag-assume ako last year, noong June, tapon, kasi wala akong time,” Sablan said after the game. In his second season with the team, with much more preparation, the UST tactician added that the players are more experienced, in terms of maturity and exposure.  "Sabi nga ng [UST Alumni Association President], si Mr. Henry Tenedero, sabi niya, there is winning in losing. Ang interpretation sa sarili ko panalo ako sa mga players na ito, dahil wala naman sila a few years back." In the second-to-the-last game of the season, where the Tigers came close against the immaculate Ateneo Blue Eagles, Sablan pointed out the strides of improvement the players have made, with the help of his coaching.  The former Glowing Goldie also said that the team, which will be mostly intact next season, will only get better. “Ang interpretation sa sarili ko panalo ako sa mga players na ito, dahil wala naman sila a few years back. Yung development nila, maganda, siguro yun ang nagawa kong maganda. Panalo ako sa kanila.” --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @philipptionary......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 4th, 2017

Ricci Rivero takes center stage for DLSU as Player of the Week

De La Salle University swingman Ricci Rivero stood out among his peers and earned this week's UAAP Press Corps Chooks-to-Go Player of the Week award of the UAAP Season 80 Men's Basketball Tournament.  Rivero helped the defending champions steady their ship this week after ending their first round on a sour note, losing to archrival Ateneo de Manila University, 76-75.  The Green Archers tacked two straight wins this week to improve to a 6-2 slate with Rivero averaging 20 points, three assists, and 3.5 steals.  Rivero said he just tried to play straight defense and trusted that his offense will follow through as long as he got to the right spots.  "At first I always think of ways of helping the team and the coaches just told me to just stick to the game plan and they will find me on offense," said Rivero.  "I'll just do my job and they'll help me get my offense going." Rivero's more impactful game of the week came in the Green Archers' 75-73 victory over Far Eastern University.  The second-year guard carried the offensive responsibilities for DLSU with 20 points, on 9-of-15 shooting, when Ben Mbala struggled the offensive floor on 5-of-16 shooting.  Rivero beat teammate Mbala, Thirdy Ravena of Ateneo, and Mark Olayon of University of the East for the weekly plum......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 16th, 2017

Chibueze Ikeh punctuates breakout with nod as Player of the Week

Ateneo de Manila University’s Chibueze Ikeh is slowly but surely proving his worth with the Blue Eagles in the UAAP Season 80 men's basketball tourney. Now playing in his third year with the team, Ikeh has emerged as one of the key cogs in the Katipunan-based five's bid to reach the Promised Land anew, best typified by his impressive performance in the last two games. For leading Ateneo to a league-best 6-0 record and for showing he has what it takes, Ikeh earned his first UAAP Press Corps Chooks-to-Go Player of the Week award. Ikeh beat Adamson University’s Papi Sarr and the Far Eastern University pair of Ron Dennison and Arvin Tolentino for the weekly individual plum. Using his height and heft advantage to the hilt, the 6-foot-7 Ikeh averaged 12.5 ppg, 11.0 rpg, 2.0 apg, and 1.5 bpg last week. Against University of Sto. Tomas last Wednesday, Ikeh scored seven points, pulled down 11 rebounds, and had three assists and two steals as the Eagles subdued the Growling Tigers, 94-84. Three days later, Ikeh scattered a career-high 18 points to go with 11 caroms, one dime, and two blocks in Ateneo's 96-83 drubbing of National University. Ikeh, a native of Nigeria, has also showcased a new facet of his game when he took—and—buried two three pointers against the Bulldogs last Saturday. “Coaches have been teaching me other facets of the game such as shooting, dribbling. I just found myself open and I just had to shoot it and went in,” Ikeh said. “I’m not feeling any pressure. It’s just a game. If I miss, that’s okay. Coaches are teaching me every aspect of the game and that’s giving me the confidence I need,' he added. Ateneo's coaching staff was not surprised when Ikeh tried to extend his range because they were giving him the go-signal to do so. “We weren’t surprised. The coaches have been giving him (Ikeh) the green light to shoot if he has a good rhythm to shoot it,” assistant coach Sandy Arespacochaga said. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 2nd, 2017

La Salle finally ends dry spell vs Ateneo, takes Game 1

MANILA, Philippines — It took them three tries, but the De La Salle University Lady Spikers finally had their archrivals' numbers......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsMay 2nd, 2017

Ateneo, Adamson collide; Santo Tomas takes on UP

Games Today (Smart Araneta Coliseum) 2 p.m. – UP vs UST 4 p.m. – Ateneo vs Adamson Young teams Ateneo and Adamson hope to start playing like grown men today as they face off in the featured game of the UAAP basketball tournament at the Smart.....»»

Category: newsSource:  mb.com.phRelated NewsSep 16th, 2016

Referee takes retribution on player as PSG wins 1-0

By Jerome Pugmire, Associated Press PARIS (AP) — A bizarre foul committed by the referee overshadowed Paris Saint-Germain's 1-0 win on Sunday at Nantes which moved the leaders 11 points clear at the top of the French league. In a highly unusual end to the game, referee Tony Chapron sent off Nantes center half Diego Carlos in the last minute — although the official was the culprit. Carlos was running behind Chapron near the halfway line and trying to catch up with play when he inadvertently clipped the referee's heels as their paths crossed. Chapron tumbled forward onto the turf and then, in what appeared to be a blatant act of retribution, swiped his right leg at Carlos. An irate Chapron got up and brandished a second yellow card for Carlos. "I know it's a difficult job to referee, but they must also have to ask questions of themselves," Nantes midfielder Valentin Rongier said on Canal Plus television. "If we do that it goes before a (disciplinary) commission and we get 10 games (suspension)." There is little suspense in the league with PSG dropping only seven points from a possible 60. Defending champion Monaco is in second place, level on points with Lyon, but neither seemingly has the caliber to pressure PSG by going on a lengthy winning run. Even without playing its usual scintillating football, PSG was able to scrape past a lackluster Nantes side coached by Claudio Ranieri. He guided Leicester City to the 2015-16 English Premier League title in one of the biggest upsets in soccer history, but Nantes remains in fifth place and does not seem to have enough flair to go higher. Angel Di Maria scored in the 12th minute with the home defense slow to react. Kylian Mbappe left striker Edinson Cavani's probing pass go through his legs and the unmarked Di Maria toe-poked the ball into the left corner. It was his third league goal of the season and followed his brace last Sunday in the French Cup. PSG carved Nantes open with a swift counterattacking move late in the first half, but Di Maria blazed over an open goal after midfielder Adrien Rabiot set him up perfectly. Nantes striker Emiliano Sala thought he had equalized in the 60th when he headed powerfully home from a free-kick but it was harshly ruled out for offside. There was no VAR to validate the goal, even though television replays showed Sala was level with Cavani when he made his run into the area. Cavani needed just one more goal to move level with Zlatan Ibrahimovic as PSG's all-time leading scorer on 156. He could get the record at home to Dijon on Wednesday. ___ LYON STUMBLES Lyon wasted a chance to move up to second place after being held 1-1 at home by relegation-threatened Angers. Lyon equalizer through top scorer Nabil Fekir. But Angers was hanging on after having midfielder Flavien Tait sent off in the 84th minute. Third-place Lyon is one point ahead of Marseille in fourth. It was a precious point for Angers, moving it up to 18th — the relegation playoff spot. Lyon fell behind to striker Karl Toko Ekambi's penalty kick in the 14th minute. He jogged up casually with a staggered run-up, and stroked the ball to the left as goalkeeper Anthony Lopes guessed the wrong way. Toko Ekambi has 10 league goals and his performances have caught the eye. He has been linked with a move to the Premier League in this month's transfer window, which could damage Angers' chances of staying up. Two minutes after the break, Fekir opened up the defense with a superb piece of skill — dragging the ball back and then flicking it through the legs of a defender. The ball rolled toward forward Maxwell Cornet but Fekir sprinted alongside him and drilled it into the bottom corner. It was Fekir's 14th league goal of the season in a career-best tally. He is expected to make a big-money move to a top club in the summer. ___ MOVING CLEAR Saint-Etienne moved away from the relegation zone after beating fellow struggler Toulouse 2-0. Slovenia striker Robert Beric scored his first goal of the season from the penalty spot moments before halftime. Senegalese midfielder Assane Diousse got his first for the club when he sealed the win in the 86th minute. Saint-Etienne moved up to 14th place. Toulouse is 19th and the pressure is increasing on coach Pascal Dupraz......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 15th, 2018

FEU downs NU, DLSZ dismantles Ateneo in juniors football action

Defending champion Far Eastern University-Diliman needed only two first-half goals to repulse National University, 2-0, and move closer in securing a Finals berth in the UAAP Season 80 juniors football tournament at the Rizal Memorial Stadium, Sunday.       Gio Pabualan scored in the 16th and 37th minute to power the Baby Tamaraws to a league-best 16 points.       With nine goals, Pabualan became the league's leading goalscorer, surpassing his teammate Kieth Absalon, who is now in second with eight.       A draw in its last two matches will be enough for FEU-Diliman to make it to the championship game set on Feb. 3.       De La Salle-Zobel boosted its hopes for the other Finals berth with a masterful 9-1 dismantling of Ateneo.       The Junior Archers are now level with the Bullpups in second spot with 13 points, but the Muntinlupa-based booters are way ahead in goal difference.         Joshua San Diego produced a hat-trick while Shanden Vergara, John Rhey Lagura and Sherwin Basindanan had braces for De La Salle-Zobel.         Justin Luis Uy delivered the lone goal for the Blue Eaglets, who are still at the bottom of the table without a point.        Action resumes on Sunday at the same Malate pitch, with NU taking on University of Santo Tomas at 8 a.m., followed by the 3 p.m. match between FEU-Diliman and Ateneo. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 14th, 2018

Ateneo still spotless after shutting down MVP leader Cansino

STANDINGS Ateneo 8-0 NU 6-2 UST 5-3 FEU-Diliman 4-4 Adamson 3-4 DLSZ 2-5 UPIS 1-6 UE 1-6 On Saturday at the Filoil Flying V Centre, Ateneo de Manila High School showed that second, third, and fourth combined is better than first all by himself. Kai Sotto, SJ Belangel, and Dave Ildefonso all together to power Ateneo de Manila High School right through MVP frontrunner CJ Cansino and University of Sto. Tomas, 78-54. Sotto is second, Belangel is third, and Ildefonso is fourth to first-place Cansino in the MVP leaderboard of the UAAP 80 Juniors Basketball Tournament. Together, however, they again proved to be too much for one of the other contenders in the tournament. “Kahit ganito, marami pa rin kaming kailangang ayusin. We still have lots to improve,” head coach Joe Silva said. Ildefonso had 20 points, seven assists, and three assists; Belangel had 13 points, six assists, and six rebounds; and Sotto had 11 points, 12 rebounds, and five blocks to make sure Ateneo remained undefeated through eight games. The Tiger Cubs actually got off to a strong start and owned an eight-point lead in the early going before the league-leaders settled down. Just trailing by one late in the second quarter, Belangel then orchestrated a 9-0 run that put the Blue Eaglets on top, 35-27, at the half. They would only keep their foot on the gas pedal from there and in all, crushed their opponents, 65-36, in the last three quarters. The offense took some time to get going, but the defense was on-point from the get-go as the kids from Katipunan frustrated Cansino to only 16 points, seven coming when the game was already over, in 6-of-20 shooting along with three turnovers. “Actually, we were expecing a shaky start sa offense kaya second quarter, we locked it down,” Silva said. He then continued, “The boys were proud enough to lock Cansino down.” With another convincing victory, they have now defeated UST twice, Far Eastern University-Diliman once, and Nazareth School of National University once all by double-digits. On the other hand, the Tiger Cubs dropped to third in the standings now at 5-3. With the MVP frontrunner struggling, nobody else stepped up as Vince Dolendo was the only other one in double-digits with 10 points BOX SCORES ATENEO 78 – Ildefonso 20, Belangel 13, Credo 12, Manuel 11, Sotto 11, Jaymalin 3, Chiu 2, Escalona 2, Tandeo 2, Diaz 2, David 0, Lopa 0, Gusi 0, Ong 0 UST 54 – Canaino 16, Dolendo 10, Benzonan 9, Villapando 8, Lina 6, Narvasa 3, Baquial 2, Anunciacion 0, Dea Cruz 0, Palencia 0, Esplana 0, Manabat 0 QUARTER SCORES: 13-18, 35-27, 58-41, 78-54 —- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 13th, 2018

Jrs. MVP leader Cansino already in touch with new UST coach Ayo

Aldin Ayo’s first-ever recruit in for De La Salle University was its high school star. Now with University of Sto Tomas, Ayo is looking to do the same. The new head coach of the Growling Tigers was present at the Filoil Flying V Centre on Saturday for the Tiger Cubs’ matchup with league-leader Ateneo de Manila High School. Of course, Ayo was there to scout the Juniors program of his new school – which just so happens to have the frontrunner in the MVP race in CJ Cansino. While the two-time collegiate champion coach declined interviews from media, he was seen chatting with Cansino’s mother after the game. Asked about it, the King Tiger Cub himself answered, “Opo, nagkausap na sila kanina.” He then continued, “Sabi raw po ni coach na gusto nila akong kunin sa UST. Sobrang saya po naming ganun na nga po ang nangyayari.” In earlier interviews, Cansino has already stated that he wants to stay in Espana for college. “Sana nga po, tumuloy rin ako sa Seniors para bigyan din ako ng pagkakataon na iangat yung Growling Tigers. Gusto ko ring i-prove sa Seniors na may magagawa ako for UST,” he said then. Now, it looks like his wish may just be granted as a source said UST is on the lookout for talent at the wings. Last year, the Growling Tigers trotted out the likes of Jordan Sta. Ana, Reggie Boy Basibas, and Christian Garcia at the wings. Said to be coming back to bolster that weakness is Embons Bonleon. Still, getting the six-foot-two swingman will be a coup for the rebuilding squad as they will be getting a blue-chip recruit who fills a need. Also, Ayo has some sort of success with his first-ever recruit being his program’s high school star. Two years ago, he got the commitment of DLS Zobel star and Juniors MVP Aljun Melecio. That partnership proved to be a big part of the Green Archers’ championship. —- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 13th, 2018

Dinwiddie takes charge in closing seconds, Nets beat Hawks

ATLANTA --- Spencer Dinwiddie did everything he could to keep the Brooklyn Nets composed in the closing seconds. "We've had a little bit of a losing streak and we had some heartbreaking losses followed up obviously by the very poor showing against Detroit," he said. "To come out here and take Atlanta's best shot and still come away with the victory is big-time." Dinwiddie had 20 points, 10 assists and nine rebounds, Jahlil Okafor added 17 points in a reserve role and the Nets beat the Hawks 110-105 on Friday night. Dinwiddie made the go-ahead basket with 11 seconds left as the Nets snapped a three-game losing streak to move past an embarrassing 34-point home loss to Detroit two nigh...Keep on reading: Dinwiddie takes charge in closing seconds, Nets beat Hawks.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJan 13th, 2018

UST’s CJ Cansino leads Ateneo’s Kai Sotto by 26 points in MVP race

All eyes have been on Ateneo de Manila High School’s Kai Sotto in the UAAP 80 Juniors Basketball Tournament – but perhaps, most, it not all, of them should be on CJ Cansino. University of Sto. Tomas’ shining star is, far and away, the frontrunner for MVP after the first round of eliminations. Cansino has tallied 100.57 Statistical Points (SPs) built on per game counts of 27.6 points in 43.5 percent shooting, 14.6 rebounds, 2.6 assists, and 1.7 steals. With that, the Tiger Cub swingman leads the tally for top individual player by a whopping 26 points. This, even though it has been Ateneo, and not UST, which remains undefeated and stands as title favorite. A distant second is Sotto who registered 74.43 SPs on averages of 12.9 points in 52.5 percent shooting, 12.7 rebounds, and 4.9 blocks. The 7-foot-1 towering teen has been the apple of the eye for many Filipinos, but most probably is one or two years away from being the standard for MVP. Two other Blue Eaglets are behind him with SJ Belangel at third (69.00 SPs) and Dave Ildefonso (67.00 SPs) at fourth. Rounding out the top five is first-year player Agem Miranda of University of the East whose award bid has been boosted by Nazareth School of National University’s forfeiture. Also in the top 10 are Far Eastern University-Diliman’s L-Jay Gonzales and RJ Abarrientos, Adamson High School’s Jorem Sabandal, De La Salle Zobel’s Raven Cortez, and Bullpup Rhayyan Amsali. —- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 12th, 2018

Prado takes backseat in scoring in stacked Arellano roster

Jovielyn Prado’s scoring average in Arellano University’s first three games in the 93rd NCAA women’s volleyball competition is far from her production norm last year. In three outings, Prado’s average is only 8.6 points per game. She had double-digit norms last year.   But the Lady Chiefs’ prized hitter is not worried. In fact, she likes that somehow she’s able take a backseat in scoring with the repeat-seeking Arellano U stacked with other offensive options this year. “Mas okay po para sa akin ‘yun kasi mas nakikita ko na ‘yung improvement ng teammates ko,” said Prado on Friday after the Lady Chiefs’ 25-17, 25-17, 25-12, win over Letran at the FilOil Flying V Centre for their third win in as many games and 15th straight win since last season.  Prado only had seven markers in the match, her second single-digit scoring this season after finishing with 12 in a straight-set win over Emilio Aguinaldo College last Sunday.   The graduating player also scored seven in their season-opening sweep of Mapua University. Rookie Necole Ebuen is Arellano U’s leading scorer, currently averaging 10.6 points per outing while Regine Arocha is chipping in almost 10 markers per game. Skipper Anne Esguerra is averaging six points per game while middle Andrea Marzan has a 5.6-point norm per outing for the Lady Chiefs.   Prado sees their well-balanced scoring as an advantage as they go deep into the season. “’Pagdating sa crucial games masasabi ko po na may ibubuga ‘yung bawat isa sa amin,” she said. “And mas OK din po yun para hindi lang isa o dalawang tao lang yung babantayan samin at hindi po mababasa yung play namin.”   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 12th, 2018

San Beda downs LSGH, moves closer to juniors football title repeat

Defending NCAA juniors football champions San Beda College used an early second-half blitz to come back and defeat CSB-LSGH, 2-1, Friday afternoon at the Rizal Memorial Football Stadium. LSGH was getting the better chances early in the match, and came very close to getting a quick 1-0 lead after San Beda committed a foul inside the penalty box. Loyd Soco was tasked to take the Penalty Kick, but missed out on scoring after sending it straight to Red Cubs keeper Jessie Semblante’s mitts. The Greenies ended up getting on the board first anyway, after striker Vin Dela Cruz found the back of the net in the 33rd minute. It was all San Beda in the second half however, as the defending champs turned the match around in a matter of seven minutes. Jimmar Castillo scored the equalizer in the 47th minute, and then doubled up in the 54th minute to give the Red Cubs a 2-1 advantage. The Taft-based side pushed hard to pull even, but couldn’t manage an equalizer of their own as the Red Cubs held on for the win. San Beda finds themselves one game away from back-to-back juniors titles, while LSGH will look to even things up. Match two takes place on Monday, January 15th, at 4:00 PM, also at the Rizal Memorial Football Stadium......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 12th, 2018

Perpetual, San Beda dispute share of early lead

Games Thursday: (FilOil Flying V Centre, San Juan) 8:00 a.m. – LPU vs CSB (jrs) 9:30 a.m. -- LPU vs. CSB (m) 11:00 a.m. –- LPU vs. CSB (w) 12:30 p.m. -- Perpetual vs. San Beda (w) 2:00 p.m. -- Perpetual vs. San Beda (m) 3:30 p.m. –- Perpetual vs. San Beda (jrs)   University of Perpetual Help and San Beda College clash for a share of the lead in the 93rd NCAA women’s volleyball tournament at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan Thursday. Coming off contrasting seasoning-opening victories in their respective debuts, the Lady Altas and Lady Red Spikers look to join defending champion Arellano University (2-0) on top of the standings. Game time is at 12:30 p.m. after the 11:00 a.m. match between College of St. Benilde and Lyceum of the Philippines University. Perpetual, which is looking to make a comeback in the Final Four after falling short last year, drubbed LPU, 25-21, 25-17, 25-22, Sunday with fourth year player Lourdes Clemente tallying 14 points to lead the Lady Altas. Cindy Imbo and Bianca Tripoli added 13 and 10 markers each for the Las Pinas-based squad.    “Sa susunod na game namin, kung ano ‘yung na-showcase na talent ng mga players ngayon sa first game, siguro pagdating sa second game mas magiging iba kami sa kung paano namin pinaghandaan ang first game namin,” said Perpetual coach Macky Carino. “Mas lalong mataas ang desire naming manalo.” The Lady Red Spikers, on the other hand, needed to comeback from a 2-1 match deficit to escape Jose Rizal University’s upset attempt, 23-25, 25-19, 13-25, 25-19, 15-9, last Friday. San Beda will bank on Cesca Racraquin, Sattriani Espiritu and Viray sisters Nieza and Jiezela. CSB is also eyeing to join the Lady Chiefs at the lead. The Season 91 champions Lady Blazers made short work of Letran, 25-22, 25-11, 25-20, last Friday. Veterans Ranya Musa and Rachel Austero and new recruits Marites Pablo and Klarissa Abriam will carry the fight for the Arnold Laniog-mentored squad against the Lady Pirates led by Christine Miralles, Bien Juanillo and Monica Sevilla. In men’s play, the repeat-seeking Blazers and Season 91 champion Altas face separate foes as they shoot for a share of the lead with the Chiefs. Perpetual takes on the Lions, who also won in their opening day assignment, at 2:00 p.m. while the Blazers square off with the Pirates at 9:00 a.m.   ---        Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 10th, 2018

Curry goes off again, Warriors top Nuggets for 5th straight

By Janie McCauley, Associated Press OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) - Stephen Curry scored 32 points and dished out nine assists in another superb performance during his sensational recent stretch, and the Golden State Warriors beat the Nuggets 124-114 on Monday night (Tuesday, PHL time) to avenge an ugly home loss to Denver in late December. Nikola Jokic had his first triple-double of the season with 22 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists as four players scored 20 points or more for the Nuggets, who were coming off a 106-98 loss at Sacramento on Saturday (Sunday, PHL time). Klay Thompson scored 19 on his bobbblehead night while Draymond Green added a season-high 23 points and 10 assists in the defending NBA champions' fifth straight victory on a night when Kevin Durant sat out his third consecutive game with a strained right calf. In his 12th 30-point game of the season, Curry hit a long three-pointer with 56.1 seconds left in the third and the Warriors led 93-81 going into the final quarter after the Nuggets had fought back to tie it midway through the period. The two-time MVP has scored 29 or more points in seven straight games. In four games before Monday (Tuesday, PHL time), he was averaging 36 points, six rebounds, 4.8 assists and 1.3 steals in 31.8 minutes since returning from an 11-game absence with a sprained right ankle. The Western Conference Player of the Week for last week, Curry strained his left knee in the first half, headed to the locker room to have it taped and then returned. Golden State's David West contributed 10 points, scoring in double figures for a third straight game to go with six rebounds and four assists while becoming the 127th player in NBA history to play in 1,000 regular-season games. Thompson made his initial four shots and Green scored eight quick points, connecting on his first three field goal attempts. He dished out five assists as Golden State raced ahead 27-20 -- a far cry from the Warriors' previous performance in a 96-81 loss to Denver at Oracle Arena on Dec. 23 (Dec. 24, PHL time). The Warriors shot 3-for-27 in that game from three-point range but topped that with four three's in the first quarter Monday (Tuesday, PHL time) and finished 13-for-30 from deep. Thompson's three-pointer with 4:10 left in the third made it 78-71 after Denver had tied the game 89-all at the 6:57 mark of the period. The Nuggets held the Warriors to a season-low scoring performance here last time that snapped their 11-game winning streak. Golden State has won 7-of-8 since. Denver got 22 points from Gary Harris, and 21 apiece from Jamal Murray and Trey Lyles. DURANT UPDATE Kerr said Durant "didn't feel quite right" after going through shootaround earlier in the day. "We're all on the same page that until he feels right, he's not going to play," Kerr said. "Hopefully the next couple of days he'll clear that hurdle and be ready to go." GREEN FINED Green was fined $25,000 by the NBA for publicly criticizing the league's officiating in comments after Golden State's 121-105 win against the Clippers on Saturday (Sunday, PHL time). CURRY THE OWNER? Curry has people helping him explore options to buy into the NFL's Carolina Panthers. Jerry Richardson announced he plans to sell the franchise while he is under investigation for sexual and racial misconduct in the workplace. "It's a pretty interesting opportunity," Curry said after Monday's (Tuesday, PHL time) shootaround. "I've had conversations with plenty of people about the right way to go about it and kind of the different approaches I could personally take. Obviously I have a day job, but I've got people that are plugged in and trying to see how to make that happen. I've had nothing really to say about it besides that I'm very interested and very willing to do what it takes to make that happen." TIP-INS Nuggets: Denver limited its turnovers to 11 after committing a season-high 26 at Sacramento two days earlier that led to 40 Kings points. ... Denver is 3-11 on the road vs. Western Conference teams. Warriors: Andre Iguodala hit his first three-pointer in nine games he's played since Dec. 18 (Dec. 19, PHL time), snapping an 0-for-12 funk from deep when he made one in the first. ... Golden State rookie Jordan Bell took a hard fall in the second quarter and moved gingerly afterward. ... Newly crowned U.S. figure skating national champion and Olympian Nathan Chen attended the game, watched Curry's warmup, and was set to meet him afterward. UP NEXT Nuggets: Host the Atlanta Hawks on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time). Warriors: Host the Los Angeles Clippers on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time) seeking a 13th consecutive victory in the rivalry......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 9th, 2018

NBTC to release weekly rankings of 24 best high school players in PH

Spicing up the seventh edition of the High School All-Star Game, the SM-National Basketball Training Center (NBTC) is introducing a new innovation to determine who are the best high school players in the country. The official grassroots arm of the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) will release weekly power rankings naming the top 24 high school players from the UAAP, NCAA, CESAFI, MMBL, and FCAAF tournaments in the buildup for the much-anticipated All-Star exposition this March. Every week, a selection committee made up of reputable sportswriters, coaches, and a statisticians will convene to make the list. Ateneo's Kai Sotto and SJ Belangel, UST's CJ Cansino, and NCAA MV...Keep on reading: NBTC to release weekly rankings of 24 best high school players in PH.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJan 8th, 2018