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Cagayan, NCR share top spot after Palarong Pambansa Day 1

ILOCOS SUR, Philippines – The Cagayan Valley and National Capital Region (NCR) emerged as early leaders in the partial medal tally for Palarong Pambansa at the end of the first day of competitions.  The athletic associations of both regions each garnered two gold medals as of 6:43 ........»»

Category: newsSource: rappler rapplerApr 17th, 2018

UAAP VOLLEYBALL: Who will replace Macandili?

De La Salle University completed its third three-peat with a clean sweep of an inexperienced Far Eastern University in the UAAP Season 80 women’s volleyball tournament. The Lady Spikers’ might inside the volleyball court is hinged not only on their powerful hitters or menacing middles but also on the precision and efficiency of their floor defense. For half a decade Dawn Macandili manned the floor like her life depended on it. Rolling, diving, twisting in midair and sacrificing her five-foot frame just to prevent the ball from hitting the floor. Her performance throughout her collegiate career put her in the elite list of great and unforgettable liberos in the league. But after the final whistle was blown Wednesday as the Lady Spikers wrapped the season with a 26-24, 25-20, 26-24, win in Game 2 of the best-of-three Finals series, Macandili bowed for the green and white for the last time. Now the question is: Who will fill in the huge shoes left by the Tanauan, Batangas star. The Season 80 Finals Most Valuable Player Macandili gave a few names that could take her spot in Season 81 depending on the decision of course of head coach Ramil De Jesus. “Meron naman, maraming prospects like si CJ (Saga), sina Marionne (Alba), yung mga aakyat galing senior high,” said Macandili, the 2017 AVC Asian Senior Women’s Volleyball Championship 2nd Best Libero. But taking Macandili’s role could be quite a challenge. Saga on her third year barely saw action in a setter spot. “Mahirap sabihin eh kasi si CJ ginagawang setter. Actually mahilig si coach mag-shuffle ng positions kaya mahirap sabihin eh,” said Macandili. “Pero marami namang possible na libero (na papasok).” Alba was recruited by DLSU last year after her great performance in the 2017 Palarong Pambansa but as a hitter. She has been training with the team and performed well in other tournaments as a converted libero but playing in the most celebrated collegiate league is another thing.    However, knowing her long-time mentor, Macandili, who played under De Jesus since her second year high school in DLSU-Zobel, believes that the 11-time UAAP champion coach will be able to find a fine replacement for her spot. “Tiwala naman ako sa program ni coach Ramil and the way he assigns roles to the players na alam niya kung anong ginagawa niya,” Macandili said.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 3rd, 2018

Ateneo s Fab 5: The Fearless Underdogs of UAAP Volleyball

Newly-appointed head coach Roger Gorayeb looked at his line-up heading into UAAP Season 71. A champion mentor of NCAA powerhouse San Sebastian College - Recoletos, Gorayeb had in his hands a gargantuan task of rebuilding Ateneo de Manila University women’s volleyball program. Just a few months before, Ronald Dulay, the mentor before him landed a trio of blue chip recruits who were fresh from a successful stint in the Palarong Pambansa. Angeline "Dzi" Gervacio, Fille Saint Cainglet and Jamenea "Jem" Ferrer just joined the Katipunan-based squad. Gervacio and Cainglet were products of St. Scholastica's College in Manila while Ferrer was a gem from Hope Christian School under girl’s volleyball guru Jerry Yee. Looking at his 15-woman line-up with the season just a few months ahead, Gorayeb knew he needed to do something drastic. The roster just won’t do. Talking to then athletic director Ricky Palou and team manager Tony Boy Liao, the mentor told the team officials that he intended to cut five players from the list. One could just imagine the shock in their faces. “Nakita ko may line-up pero player-playeran lang yung ganoon bang tipo, 15 ata yun. Sabi ko ‘Magtatanggal ako ng lima then magre-recruit ako,’” he said. The three rookies were in. Middle Bea Pascual, Kara Acevedo and libero Steph Gabriel retained their spots. He needed more. “Sa mga tinira kong players, si Kara Acevedo sabi niya, ‘Coach mayroong player ang ICA (Immaculate Conception Academy) na gumraduate naka-exam na rito pasado.’ Sabi ko, ‘Sige papuntahin mo,’” said Gorayeb. It was Gretchen Ho. “Sa akin kasi ang talagang nagyaya sa akin si coach Ron Dulay. Si Kara Acevedo teammate ko and she’s been recruited by Ateneo. So one summer wala akong magawa naki-train lang ako noon tapos nagustuhan nila ang laro ko and then fourth year noong graduate na ako I passed the ACET then niyayaya na nila ako,” she said. “Then nagbago ng coach na si Coach Roger and dun niya ako nakita.”   “Pagdating ko ng March (sa Ateneo) wala na akong way para maka-recruit pa. Ang nangyari yung tatlo accepted na kaagad. Si Gretchen tinanong ko sabi ko, ‘ano ba ang laro mo?’ Sabi niya the usual panggitna, tres,” Gorayeb recalled. “So sinubukan ko pero ang laro niya tres hindi quick. Siya panggitna pero hindi quicker na gusto ko saka yung height niya (maliit). Kaya lang si Gretchen takbo ng takbo, mahilig magtatakbo so sabi ko sige pwede na yan. Wala namang player na during that time. So kinuha ko si Gretchen.” Gorayeb just needed just one more. “Ngayon nagkaroon ng STCAA (Southern Tagalog Calabarzon athletic association) eh kulang pa ako ng isa, wala akong panggitna. Ang gitna ko during that time si Bea lang tapos si Gretchen so wala akong pamalit. So naisipan ko may nakita ako sa STCAA,” he said. He spotted a lanky player from Canossa Academy-Lipa, Aillysse Nacachi. “Sabi ko kay Sir Tony pagtyagaan ko na lang ito kahit hindi naman kalakasan at wala naman na rin akong choice na makapili kasi rush ang pagdating ko dyan. Nakiusap lang sila sa akin na magbuo ako ng team kasi si Ronald nag-resign,” said Gorayeb. Another freshman could’ve had ended up with Ateneo, Hope’s libero Melissa Gohing. But a few obstacles prevented her from fulfilling her promise to join Ferrer in Ateneo. She instead chose to join the ladies in green and white in Taft.    SOMETHING PROMISING December 7, 2008. Far Eastern University Gym. Excitement filled the air. Fans, mostly volleyball purists and some who just came to support their classmates or were just curious to see a new spectacle after the basketball season ended, slowly settled in their seats for the women’s division’s second game. It was Adamson University, the previous year’s runner-up, which just visited the turf of their arch nemesis and defending champion FEU, which was led by that era’s finest and most popular volleybelle Rachel Anne Daquis. Fans wanted to see if the Lady Falcons still had the same firepower they had the previous season with the loss of top setter Janet Serafica and power hitter Sang Laguilles. A rookie-laden Ateneo squad should be easy pickings with Angela Benting, rookie Pau Soriano and libero Lizlee Anne Gata in the roster. Besides the Lady Falcons got the Lady Eagles’ number. Or so they thought. “Naalala ko nu’ng time namin sinasabi sa amin ng seniors namin na, ‘Hay naku ang lakas ng Adamson, never kami nanalo dyan,’” Cainglet, now happily married to film director Lino Cayetano and with three beautiful children, recalled.  But the Lady Eagles stunned Adamson in the opening set. The Lady Falcons took the next two frames. Ateneo stole the fourth.  “Ako naalala ko ano eh, parang alam namin na lahat kasi kami palaban. Nasa amin yun. Tapos binigyan kaming lahat ng chance to be in the first six so parang dream come true,” said Ho, now an ABS-CBN host. “Naalala ko rin na palaban kaming lahat kumbaga nothing to lose eh so ang ano namin, sumasabay kami sa laro and nu’ng nakita na namin na ‘Ay kaya pala natin ‘to guys. Kaya pala naming lumaban.’” Still, Adamson had the upper hand in experience. The Lady Falcons, used to pressure and were steady at crunch time, outlasted Ateneo.           The young Katipunan-based squad fell short, 25-22, 22-25, 15-25, 25-15, 8-15. But for the Fab 5, it was a loss that felt like a resounding victory. “Parang sobrang natutuwa kami and everybody in the crowd, kaya siguro kami natawag na Fab 5 kasi rookies kami pero kahit ganoon palaban kami,” said Ho. “Saka close game. Five sets yun.” However, it was the first of five five-set matches that Ateneo will drop that season including one in the second round against the Manilla Santos-bannered De La Salle University. “Pero ang problema di kami nananalo ng five sets. Parang ilan lang ang naipanalo namin na ganoon. Feeling ko na-overwhelm kami na ‘Uy nananalo tayo.’ May ganoong disbelief ng konti pero alam namin na may ibubuga kami,” said Ho. “Definitely, our rookie season was full of five-set matches. It was tough, we felt like we were so close, but still so far away. At some point, it gave us frustration also. We just couldn't figure out that time what is it that's still lacking because we couldn't win the five-set matches,” according to Nacachi. “People said, it was because the team was still so inexperienced. We still didn't have the tenacity unlike of those more matured teams. But we didn't take it as bad, it was a learning experience for us all at the end. We had to learn how to develop that finishing will to be able to win games like that in the future.” The Fab 5 finished their rookie season with a 6-8 slate at fifth spot.   ‘MAY MEDAL NA TAYO’ Gorayeb remembered on their second year the look on Pascual’s face in their last elimination game match against Adamson. Already wrapping up their first win over the Lady Falcons, Pascual was giddy. “Natatawa nga ako dyan kay Bea kasi papanalo na kami nu’n tapos sumesenyas na siya ng tres. Sabi ko, ‘Hoy anong ginagawa mo?’ Yun pala sobrang saya na niya kasi for the first time in 30 years magkaka-medal na sila,” he said. It was the most important match of the season for the Lady Eagles. With the Fab 5 already in their sophomore year, Ateneo was already making great strides. The Lady Eagles closed that season’s elims with five straight wins capped with a victory over Adamson. Ateneo posted a 10-4 win-loss mark to enter the Final Four legitimately. “Ang nangyari kasi nu’ng time nila Charo (Soriano) kaya sila nakapasok sa semis kasi may nag-squeal na si (Jacq) Alarca di pala naka-enroll nu’n kaya na-forfeit mga laro ng La Salle,” said Gorayeb. The Fab 5 proved that they were not just a bunch of much-hyped up pretty faces. They backed it up with their skills on court. It didn’t matter that Ateneo were swept by eventual champion University of Sto. Tomas in the Final Four.      But the podium finish of Season 72 was short-lived. Adamson got its revenge in the last game of Season 73 elims, bumping off the Lady Eagles in the podium finish. The loss put Ateneo in a collision course with the twice-to-beat DLSU, who could’ve completed an elims sweep if not only for a forfeited match against University of the East after UAAP found out that Carmela Garbin and Clarisse Yeung participated in a ‘ligang labas’ while the season was onoing, in the Final Four. Ateneo gave the Lady Spikers a scare before succumbing in another heartbreaking five-set match. The Lady Eagles finished fourth but that lone semis game gave Ateneo and its maturing Fab 5 enough experience to dream for something big – A ticket into the Finals.      ‘HINOG NA KAYO’ The first three years saw the gradual improvement for Ateneo. But Season 74 proved to be the turning point for the Fab 5. A fresh new recruit from University of Sto. Tomas high school, who just completed a year of residency, came into picture and with the Fab 5 armed with years of experience, the Lady Eagles’ fate will forever be changed. Alyssa Valdez, a highly recruited open spiker just like Gervacio, Cainglet-Cayetano and Ferrer years back, gave renewed excitement for the Ateneo faithful. “Alyssa's joining with Ateneo was a great turning point for us. We needed as much support we can get, and Alyssa's entrance to the team was a great boost to the team's morale,” said Nacachi. “The girl is a powerhouse and we felt like with her presence, the team finally became solid.” “We were able to play around with the positions and the rotations, since we had different versatile open players who can also greatly play other roles,” she added. “We were also able to formulate a lot of plays and attacks because Alyssa can generally do all kinds; open, running, quick, name it all. She gave the team the power and the versatility that we previously lacked from the past seasons.” Social media was just gaining traction then but the Lady Eagles were already on the radar of volleyball purists through online forums. For the first time, Ateneo was considered a legitimate contender.   The Fab 5 proved it by winning 11 games in the elimination round, losing only to UST once and dropping two against the Lady Spikers. Valdez’s arrival gave Ferrer an even broader option on offense. It eased the scoring load off the shoulders of Cainglet and Gervacio, who was then moved to an opposite position. “I guess sakto lang din yung dating niya because by that time Kara Acevedo graduated so someone had to fill in her spot so coach Roger decided for me to move to utility or opposite,” said Gervacio. “And then sakto Alyssa naman could fill in the spot na other open spiker.” “So timing din na we had all the pieces put together at the right time,” she added. With a good performance in the elims despite missing a legit middle in Bea Pascual and the entry of Aerieal Patnongon barred by academic problems, Ateneo finished second and for the first-time was armed with a twice-to-beat advantage in the stepladder semifinals. The Lady Eagles faced an experienced Tigresses side in the last stepladder semis stage. UST just came from a hard-fought four-set do-or-die match against FEU and were banking on their four-set win over Ateneo in the second round to force another sudden death. Ateneo’s date with destiny was sealed with a four-set win over the Tigresses, who then bid goodbye to Maika Ortiz and Judy Anne Caballejo. “Pinu-push na rin kami ni Coach Roger noon eh, ‘Hinog na kayo ngayon. Kasi dalawang taon na lang, kailangan makapasok na kayo sa Finals,’” said Ho. “Somehow senior na rin kami,” added Cainglet.  “Season 74 was really the target season for us to be in the finals and target even to win the championship,” according to Nacachi. “During this time, we were already thinking we could not afford to not go in the finals.” “So it was with our mindset and our level of commitment that we were able to finally reach our goal of reaching the finals,” she added. “We had enough experience that time already, and it was really time for us to show the level of game maturity the team had obtained from the past seasons.” But then they had to face an unbeaten team. Unscathed in 14 games, De La Salle University was poised to complete a perfect season. The Lady Eagles spoiled it. Ferrer outplayed DLSU setter Mika Esperanza, 57-42, in excellent sets as Ateneo handed the Lady Spikers its first loss after 25 straight victories in a come-from-behind 23-25, 28-26, 25-23, 25-17, Finals opener win. Witnessed by 3,002 spectators inside the then The Arena in San Juan, all of the Fab 5 produced points. Cainglet had 19 behind Valdez’s 24, Gervacio scored 12, Ho had 10, Nacachi finished with five while Ferrer had one. Gorayeb made a big gambit and it worked. “Dahil sa wala kong panggitna, yung laro namin ng La Salle, ginawa kong quicker si Alyssa. Kasi si Alyssa nakakapalo. Nagulat si Ramil (de Jesus) dun.” It was a big win. A huge upset. Unfortunately, Ateneo needed to win two more.  DLSU held a thrice-to-beat advantage.   THAT SWAG After Ateneo made a miracle in Game One, fans began to feel a new rivalry born. The attendance spiked. From just 3,000 spectators, the gate attendance more than doubled its size. The interest was there. Fans of traditional powers began to notice the Lady Eagles as a rising team. For the first time, a squad with no previous championship experience except for a title during the Marcos era in a different collegiate league, made a giant jolt. Everybody wanted to see what these girls would do next.    The Lady Eagles, still high on adrenaline after their Game 1 upset, took the opening set in Game 2. But just like in their opener, a well-experienced DLSU squad adjusted to take the next three frames to move a step closer to a repeat crown. With then Rookie of the Year Ara Galang, Season Most Valuable Player Aby Marano, an intimidating Michele Gumabao and a very efficient Finals MVP Cha Cruz teaming up for the kill, the Lady Spikers ripped Ateneo apart in Game 3 in straight sets, 25-16, 25-22, 25-13. “Sabi nga ni Dzi na nadyan na lahat eh. So I guess noong Season 74 nandoon na pero may kulang pa rin,” said Ho. “I guess we we’re able to make it to the Finals pero wala pa kaming championship experience.” Ferrer agreed. "Siguro ang kulang yung championship experience kasi nasa La Salle na ‘yun eh. Ilang years na silang nagpa-finals, nag-champion and for Ateneo doon pa lang namin sinimulan," said the three-time Best Setter. Lacking championship experience is one thing, but Ateneo during that time wasn’t ready for DLSU’s most feared weapon: the Lady Spikers’ swag.  “They have that swag,” said Gervacio. “Everyone knows about it naman. It’s really coach Ramil’s style talaga kasi as I remember when we were first year, four out of six of the players inside the court were rookies and even if we go against the powerhouses UST, FEU, Adamson, hindi sila yung nakikita nyo na kapag championship na rivalry, na swag, angas, stare down. Pero La Salle talaga kahit sino ang kalaban nila they’ll bring that attitude inside the court.” That Finals series cemented a new rivalry that will become one of the most celebrated in the sport. “I think it also helped that Ateneo-La Salle basketball didn’t face also,” said Gervacio. “Siyempre nandoon ang hunger for the rivalry eh and timely din na its been Ateneo-La Salle na rin sa volleyball.”   CLOSING A CHAPTER The Fab 5 were now in their fifth and last year. They wanted to leave a winning legacy. The pieces were already there. Gorayeb had at his disposal five seniors, a rising star in Valdez, a sophomore middle in Amy Ahomiro, a versatile Ella De Jesus, a steady libero in Denden Lazaro and a new kind of weapon – a massive crowd that can turn any venue into a sea of blue.              As expected, the second installment of the Ateneo-DLSU rivalry was set into place. Both sweeping their semis opponents. The Lady Spikers crushed National University while the Lady Eagles shot down Adamson. Game One was a shocker. DLSU heading into the Finals are on a 14-game roll but were stunned in the first two sets with Ateneo stepping on the gas. But a string of miscues, mostly from the service line, did the Lady Eagles in as they allowed the Lady Spikers to force a decider. DLSU, smelling blood, punished Ateneo to eke out a 20-25, 17-25, 25-22, 25-22, 15-6, victory inside the Big Dome witnesses by 17,342-strong gate attendance. Then the series transferred to a newly-built, state-of-the-art Mall of Asia Arena that drew a crowd of 18,799. The first two frames were frustrating for the Lady Eagles.   Ateneo came back to life in the third set to gain a 9-5 lead. But DLSU easily erased it with Ateneo crumbling under pressure. The Lady Spikers were on an onslaught. Sophomore Galang pushed DLSU at matchpoint with a cold-blooded ace that went in a few inches from the baseline. The score, 24-16. It was a tense moment for the Fab 5. A long rally ensued in the next play. Gervacio, with all her might pounded a kill. Her hand making a great contact on the ball off Ferrer’s backset.     Smack! The ball ricocheted off the hands of DLSU’s Wensh Tiu before falling on the same landing area of Gervacio, who tried to dive for a dig together with Lazaro. DLSU swept Ateneo, 25-23, 25-20, 25-16. Game over.          “Kahit hindi kami nanalo alam naming ibinigay namin ang lahat namin, all-out talaga kaya wala kaming pagsisisi,” said Ho. It was the end of the Fab 5 era, but they left more than what any of them could have imagined. "I remember so many people or fans telling me that they started really watching UAAP Volleyball because of our batch. And that is really touching and fulfilling to know. Knowing that you were able to leave an impact like that to people. We were not able to bring even a single championship to our school, Ateneo, but we were able to touch a lot of people's hearts despite that," Nacachi shared. The Fab 5 closed a colorful chapter of Ateneo volleyball in tears. They were there during the Lady Eagles’ birth pains. They labored. They shed tears, blood and sweat. They laid the foundation for something big. The Fab 5 planted the seeds that would eventually bear fruit and would change the course of Ateneo women’s volleyball program forever. Glory didn’t happen during their time. It started in theirs.    Amidst the roar of the crowd, the falling confetti, banging of drums and the echoing chant of ‘Animo La Salle’ from the sea of green, the Fab 5 hugged each other tight. They found comfort in each other. It was their time to say goodbye. For those who remained – Valdez, Lazaro, Ahomiro, De Jesus – the defeat added fuel to their already blazing desire to bring glory for the blue and white. They were the next in line, heirs to unfinished business. WATCH: FAB 5 Reunion Part 1 and Part 2 --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 20th, 2018

Western Visayas, Calabarzon battle for 2nd spot as NCR pulls away in Palaro medal race

ILOCOS SUR, Philippines – It has turned into a race for the second spot between the regions of Western Visayas and Southern Tagalog as the National Capital Region continued to gather more gold medals and virtually seal the top spot in the Palarong Pambansa 2018. NCR added ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsApr 19th, 2018

Still no stopping NCR in the Palarong Pambansa 2018 medal chase

ILOCOS SUR, Philippines - The National Capital Region (NCR) team maintained its lead at the end of the third day of action in the Palarong Pambansa 2018. As of 6 pm on Wednesday, April 18, NCR tightened its grip of the No. 1 spot  even more after amassing a total ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsApr 18th, 2018

Cagayan Valley champ aims to break personal record in Palarong Pambansa 2018

ILOCOS SUR, Philippines- Algin Gomez, 17, came to Palarong Pambansa 2018 with a mission to break his current personal record in the triple jump for secondary boys. Gomez, a native of Aparri town in Cagayan province, already secured a gold medal for his long jump, one gold of keeping his ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsApr 18th, 2018

Arnis prodigies propel Soccsksargen to early lead in Palarong Pambansa 2018

ILOCOS SUR, Philippines – It rained gold for Soccsksargen on the second day of the Palarong Pambansa 2018 , earning the region the top spot in the partial medal tally so far.  As of 5 pm on Tuesday, April 17, the Soccsksargen Regional Athletics Association collected 6 gold, 3 silver, ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsApr 17th, 2018

UAAP Volleyball: Bernadeth Pons: Probinsyana with a Superstar Soul

In a time where gadgets have pretty much taken over the lives of majority of the world’s population, Bernadeth Pons prefers to keep things simple. Instead of swiping her phone for the latest news on Twitter or organizing her feed on Instagram, FEU’s Team Captain and graduate of Financial Management would rather spend time inside the athlete’s dormitory to sleep. While that sounds boring, the 21-year old Pons reasons that she needs all the energy she can get to complete her Master’s degree in Business Administration and perform at the highest level in her final season in the UAAP. The 5’7” open spiker is currently the fourth best scorer in the league averaging 15.2 points per match. She is also ranked third in both digging and receiving. Because of her all-around brilliance, there is a fairly good amount of fans on social media who have been campaigning for Pons to be named MVP of Season 80. But, of course, Pons is oblivious to that. In fact, she didn’t even know that she was included in the 34-player wish list of new National Team Head Coach Ramil de Jesus. It took a text message from her younger sister, Melody, who lives in their hometown of Talisay, Negros Occidental for Pons to learn about the development. “Ha? Saan galing yan?” was her honest reply. To Pons, playing for the national team goes beyond her wildest dreams. And while she feels very much honored to have her name considered for a spot, Pons says her current focus is with FEU. After all, it was the school that provided her with a means to fulfill her goals and make her parents proud. From Softball to Volleyball Pons was born in Malolos, Bulacan where her father, Roberto and mother, Maryjen met. A year after her birth, the family moved to Talisay where Roberto started playing baseball recreationally. When his eldest daughter grew big enough to play, she also took a liking to the sport. Pons would even join the boys play catch during her elementary days at Efigenio-Enrica Lizares Memorial School. Unfortunately, there was no softball team for Pons to try-out for. That’s when her classmate, Allen Joy Esponilia invited her to try-out for the volleyball team. “Nung una, sobrang hirap kasi wala talaga akong alam eh. Kahit dig, dig lang, kung saan-saan pumupunta. Nahihiya ako sa ka-partner ko kasi syempre, alam na niya yung basics ng volleyball. Naiiyak na nga ako kasi palagi nalang tumatalsik,” recalled Pons, who was 10 years old at the time. But, the challenge of excelling at a sport where she had no background in challenged the young Pons. Eventually, she learned how to dig up powerful spikes and became a libero. In the fifth grade, she experienced her first major competition by participating in the Palarong Pambansa held in Palawan and representing Region 6 – Western Visayas where she teamed up with Kim Gequillana and Ayel Estraňero. It was the first of five Palarong Pambansa events she would participate in. In those competitions, Pons played against numerous future UAAP stars like Jia Morado, Desiree Cheng, Majoy Baron, Jhoana Maraguinot and a powerhouse Region 7 – Central Visayas squad that featured Sisi Rondina, Dimdim Pacres, Rica Rivera and CJ Saga. Leap of Faith As she got older, Pons began developing her spiking prowess and caught the eye of the legendary Roger Gorayeb, who wanted to bring her to San Sebastian College-Recoletos. But, she was reluctant to leave home. “Wala akong idea about life dito sa Manila. So, hindi ko alam kung tutuloy ba ako or hindi. Dumating sa point na nag-decide kami ng Papa ko na doon nalang sa amin ako mag college,” explained Pons. During her final year in high school in 2013, then FEU Head Coach Shaq delos Santos went to the Regional Meet in Roxas City, Capiz to recruit the reluctant Pons. Delos Santos was persistent in convincing her to come and be a part of his plan to revive the volleyball program of the university. The free education, food and accessibility to the training facilities finally convinced Pons to take a leap of faith.   “Naisip ko, pag doon ako sa probinsya, mamamasahe ako every day, mabigat din sa parents ko. So, yun talaga yung sabi ko, ‘O-oo na ako’. Nag-decide ako na mag go-go na ako sa Maynila,” recalled Pons. For someone who never imagined leaving her hometown, Pons didn’t have any trouble making her mark in the UAAP as she immediately led the Lady Tamaraws in scoring (11.8 points per match) as a rookie. She would become FEU’s leading scorer in each of her UAAP stints which includes Final Four appearances in the past three seasons. Last Stretch Now that Pons is approaching the last stretch of her collegiate career and with FEU in a good position to attain a twice-to-beat advantage in the post-season for the first time since 2009, she is more focused than ever on the task at hand. Should the Lady Tamaraws beat NU in their last elimination round game on Sunday and if Ateneo loses to La Salle, FEU will enter the Final Four as the number two ranked team. But, Pons knows it won’t be easy as the Lady Bulldogs will be out for redemption. “Kami kasi yung unang tumalo sa kanila sa first round. So, palagi namin rine-remind yung bawat isa na yung NU, pipilitin nilang bumawi sa atin. Tapos sila, nothing to lose kasi kahit ano mangyari, number four na sila. Eh tayo, may hinahabol tayo na number two. Hindi puwedeng magpabaya tayo kasi NU pa rin yan. Lalaban at lalaban yan,” shared Pons. It’s been a decade since FEU last won the UAAP Women’s Volleyball title. While Pons has already achieved her initial goal of earning a college degree, she still has that burning desire to give back to the school that gave her the opportunity to help her family and leave a lasting legacy in the process. “Gusto ko maalala nila ako bilang isa sa mga nakapagbalik ng crown sa FEU. Sobrang tagal nang nawala ang FEU sa championship. Yun yung gusto namin ibalik ulit,” declared Pons. All Pons ever wanted was to ease the burden on her parents by graduating from school. The game of volleyball has given her a means to accomplish that and so much more. She’s become one of the UAAP’s brightest stars and may wear the colors of the Philippine flag one day. But, no matter what happens, she will always be that same humble girl from Talisay, inspiring countless others like her to be brave and go for great. Catch Bernadeth Pons and the FEU Tamaraws take on the NU Bulldogs on April 15, Sunday, 12 noon LIVE on S+A, S+A HD, Liga, Liga HD and via livestream......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 15th, 2018

UE: Rod Roque – The Accidental Coach

“Nakakatawa nga eh. I’ve never played volleyball in my life! Never!” A fact University of East head coach Rod Roque admitted when he talked to sports scribes after his first stint with the Lady Warriors in just the sixth game of the squad in the UAAP Season 80 women’s volleyball tournament. Just two days before, Francis Vicente parted ways with UE after three and a half seasons with a futile 2-45 win-loss record. The Lady Warriors absorbed their 12th straight defeat since Season 79 a day before he resigned. Then they found Roque, the school’s representative to the UAAP Board, a perfect fit. But with a losing record and a team lacking confidence, why would UE hire an interim coach that had no volleyball background? The answer is simple. The school’s management wanted someone that they can trust, a person who has been loyal to the Recto-based university and a tactician that can hold the fort until they can find a proper replacement. Plus, it’s an added bonus that the man they chose for the interim spot made miracles in their boy’s volleyball program. Heck, the man gave UE high school more titles than the other teams’ number of boy’s crowns combined. But Roque is also quick to temper UE management’s expectations. “Siympre mahirap because people might expect a miracle. Sabi ko naman sa management when they told me, sabi ko, ‘Don’t expect a miracle because a miracle doesn’t happen overnight.”   A Twist of Fate Roque may not have the volleyball background like the other UAAP coaches but he excelled in a different kind of sport.      “High school, college, noong estudyante pa ako gymnast ako,” said Roque, a true-blooded Red Warrior with a BS Physical Education degree. He was a member of the national men’s all-around gymnastics team and even represented the country in different international tournaments. “Nakapunta kami sa Asian Youth, sa National games. Di ko lang nalaro yung SEA (Southeast Asian) Games,” he said. After finishing his Masters degree in UE in 1992, Roque grew tired of gymnastics and decided to pursue his love of teaching, working as a PE instructor in the same university. Then fate brought him into coaching high school boy’s volleyball.         “Una ko na-discover sa intramural volleyball. Kumuha kami ng player noong intrams. Nagtayo kami ng team, nananalo naman kami. So yun na yung umpisa,” he said. With the UE boy’s team success, the late athletic director Brenn Perez saw a lot of potential with the Junior Warriors and he decided to field the squad in the UAAP.   “Nakita ng director namin, si Mr. Perez na nagtsa-champion kami sa mga invitational. So nag-propose siya sa UAAP na isama na ‘yung UAAP jrs volleyball. Ayun. Since 1996 nagstart yung UAAP Jrs. volleyball sa (UE),” said Roque. But UE wasn’t as successful as it was in the other tournaments the Junior Warriors joined. De La Salle-Zobel was lording it over since the boy’s tournament started in 1995. The Junior Spikers built a dynasty from Season 57 to 62. Then Roque’s crew got its payback. UE completed a grand slam from 2001 to 2003. DLSU-Zobel snatched a crown in Season 66 but Roque was set to make history. The Junior Warriors reigned supreme for the next 11 years. Under Roque’s tutelage, UE was invincible for more than a decade, dating from 2005 to 2015 - the longest title streak of any team in any UAAP volleyball division. From 1995 to 2016 the Junior Warriors landed 22 straight Final Four appearances. Roque handled the National Capital Region’s boy’s volleyball team for 10 years, earning five Palarong Pambansa gold medals. Out of UE’s 14 titles, Roque had 10 for the Junior Warriors before taking a bigger role as UE’s athletic director after Perez passed away from a heart attack in 2009. “Nag-retire (ako as coach) kasi na-promote ako. Naging assistant director na ako. After that, two years, ginawa na akong director,” he said. “Busy na ‘yung schedule. Hindi ako makapag-ensayo.”   Back as Coach UE has been lumbering at the cellar for years both in the men’s and women’s divisions. While the Junior Warriors were copping titles, the school’s college teams were getting beaten black and blue season after season. Under Vicente’s watch, the Lady Warriors sported a 2-45 win-loss record. The Red Warriors, who named a new coach before Season 80 in national men’s volleyball team coach Sammy Acaylar, didn’t fare any better. Five games into the season, UE decided to part ways with their coaches. Acaylar resigned citing conflict of schedule a he was appointed as Perpetual Help athletic director while Vicente left because of ‘personal reasons’. But sources said that Vicente was sacked a day before Acaylar tended his resignation. While Roque struggled to turn around the campaign of the Red Warriors, his stint with the Lady Warriors was sort of ‘miraculous’. He dropped a four-setter against Far Eastern University in his debut but again became an architect of UE’s historic feat – this time in the women’s division. The Lady Warriors closed the first round with a surprise 25-22, 22-25, 14-25, 25-20, 15-13 shocker over Adamson University that ended their 12-game slide since Season 79. Just three days later, UE stunned University of Sto. Tomas, 25-23, 18-25, 28-26, 26-24, in a historic first win against the traditional powerhouse Tigresses at least since the start of the Final Four format in 1994. It marked the first time since Season 74 that the Lady Warriors won back-to-back games. It opened the eyes of volleyball fans that the Lady Warriors have talented players like Shaya Adorador, Mary Anne Mendrez and libero Kath Arado. “Na-notice kasi namin na takot silang magkamali. Takot silang magkamali kaya lalo silang nagkakamali. Pero para sa akin OK lang magkamali but make sure babawi ka,” said Roque. “Natutuwa naman ako kasi nagkakamali sila pero bumabawi.” The Lady Warriors eventually dropped their next three games after that back-to-back wins but gave Adamson, Ateneo de Manila University and De La Salle University quite a scare before succumbing. But with the change of culture brought by Roque, teams are now wary of the Lady Warriors, which will return to action on April 8 against slumping National University. UE will wrap up its campaign against FEU and University of the Philippines – the last remaining games of Roque before he leaves his post to make way to a new head coach. “This season lang talaga ako,” said Roque. With him on board, the Lady Warriors are playing like a team looking to prove that they are better than just being a win fodder for other squads. Roque made the players respect themselves. He gave UE volleyball the respect it deserves.   ---   Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMar 31st, 2018

PVL: Tigresses outplay Lady Tams in CDO

University of Sto. Tomas locked the no. 2 spot in the Final Four after outlasting Far Eastern University, 25-15, 25-27, 25-18, 22-25, 15-11, Saturday in the Premier Volleyball League Season 2 Collegiate Conference on Tour at the Xavier University Gym in Cagayan de Oro. The Tigresses closed the elimination round with a 6-1 win-loss record and rebounded from their four-set loss to unbeaten Adamson University last week. Milenna Alessandrini led UST with 16 points while Caitlyn Viray came off the bench to deliver 15 markers. Eya Laure had 12, Ysabel Jimenze got 11 while Kecelyn Galdones and Tin Francisco chipped in nine each for the Tigresses. UST will face the Lady Tams, who slid to 5-2 slate, in the best-of-three Final Four set next week.    Czarina Carandang paced FEU with 13 markers while rookie Lycha Ebon and Heather Guino-o added 10 each.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 25th, 2018

PVL: Lady Blazers try to keep semis bid alive

College of St. Benilde looks to breathe life to its Final Four hopes when the Lady Blazers clash with also-ran University of Perpetual Help in the Premier Volleyball League Season 2 Collegiate Conference Saturday at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. The match begins at 4:00 p.m. and will air via livestream. The Lady Blazers are one of the three teams still in contention for the last Final Four spot with a 2-4 win-loss record tied with San Beda University. Unbeaten Adamson University (6-0), University of Sto. Tomas (5-1) and Far Eastern University (5-1) occupy the other best-of-three semifinals seats. CSB is in a must-win situation against the Lady Altas, who are looking to play the spoilers’ role after bowing out of the race with a 1-5 slate. A win by the Lady Blazers will give them a chance to force a playoff for a semis ticket. But their fate will also depend on the Lady Red Spikers’ match against University of the Philippines (3-3). CSB must win in straight or four sets and wish that San Beda will defeat UP in five sets to earn higher quotient in case of a three-way tie at 3-4. If the Lady Blazers, Lady Red Spikers and Lady Maroons close the elims in a three-way logjam, the two squads with higher quotient will faceoff for the last semifinals seat. Meanwhile, UST and FEU battle to end their elims on a high note and a good position heading into the Final Four in PVL on Tour’s Cagayan De Oro stop. Game time is at 4:00 p.m. at the Xavier University gym.   ---             Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 24th, 2018

ASIAN GAMES: Pinoy gymnasts hold chances high

JAKARTA -- Asian Games rookies Carlos Edriel Yulo and Reyland Capellan expressed optimism on their chances for a podium finish when they plunge into action in men’s artistic competition of the gymnastics event that kicks off Monday at the Jakarta International Expo Kanayoran Hall D. The 18-year-old Yulo, the prince of the Palarong Pambansa back home, said he wanted to give back to what the Gymnastics Association of the Philippines (GAP) and his country had given him in his preparation for the Games. “I am ready this time at gusto ko pong maipakita ang  buong makakaya ko para makapagwagi ng medalya para sa bansa,” said Yulo, who clinched a silver in floor exercise in the 2018 Doha World Cup in Qatar and a bronze in vault in Melbourne World Cup Gymnastics 2018 in Australia. He also bagged a silver in vault in the Baku World Cup 2018 in Azerbaijan last March 18. Yulo will compete in the individual all-around, horizontal bar, pommel horse, parallel bars, vault, rings and his favorite floor exercise. Capellan, who won gold in floor exercise and bronze in vault in last year’ Kuala Lumpur Southeast Asian Games, also wants to show that he deserves the slot in the national team. “Handa na po akong makipagsabayan sa kanila,” said Capellan, who like Yulo, are on their first tour of duty in Asian Games. Unlike Yulo who will have seven chances to win a gold medal, Capellan will only compete in vault and floor exercise. Jan Gwynn Timbang, the other men’s artistic bet, will take his chances in vault, rings, horizontal bar, pommel horse, parallel bars and floor exercise, Competing in the Women’s Artistic Gymnastics are Ma. Cristina Onofre (balance beam, floor exercise, vault and uneven bars), Carinne Leanne Bunagan (balance beam, floor exercise, vault and uneven bars) and Shieldannah Sabio and Marian Nicole Medina (individual all-around)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 18th, 2018

PVL: Lady Tams clinch a Final Four berth

Far Eastern University once again went through the proverbial eye of the needle to carve out a come-from-behind 15-25, 25-23, 15-25, 25-23, 15-7 win over University of the Philippines and clinch a semifinals berth in the Premier Volleyball League Season 2 Collegiate Conference Saturday at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. The Lady Tamaraws fought back from five points down in the fourth set to force a decider before unleashing a barrage of hits in early in the fifth frame to silence the Lady Maroons and climb to a share of the second spot with University of Sto. Tomas with 5-1 win-loss record. FEU joined UST and unbeaten Adamson University in the Final Four. Heather Guino-o stepped up on offense for 13 points while Jeannette Villareal had 10 markers for FEU, which survived its third straight five-set game. FEU rallied from a 16-21 deficit in the fourth set to extend the match before opening a 10-3 gap in the deciding frame to cruise to back-to-back victories.    “Ang sabi ko sa kanila hindi pa naman natatapos sa fourth set so may chance pa. Ang importante nandoon pa rin ang willingness nila, yung fighting spirit nila na kaya pa rin nilang talunin. Huwag na lang nilang intindihin ang score, ang intindihin nila ang laro nila,” said FEU coach George Pascua, whose squad played without Czarina Carandang while Celine Domingo sat out the match. Carandang had difficulty in breathing and was hospitalized while Domingo was nursing a sore left knee. UP was hounded by errors, committing 42 including three of the last four points of the match while allowing the Lady Tams to land 10 aces. The Lady Maroons continued to blow hot and cold in the conference. UP has yet to string back-to-back wins. Isa Molde scored 20 points, Marist Layug got 16 while Roselyn Rossier and rookie Nicole Magsarile finished with 12 and 10 points, respectively, for the Lady Maroons, who dropped to 3-3 slate.     ---      Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 18th, 2018

GMA Network increases nationwide TV ratings lead in July

GMA Network increases nationwide TV ratings lead in July Vox Bikol Mon, 08/06/2018 - 17:50 Broadcast leader GMA Network continued to widen its lead over competition in nationwide television ratings based on the latest data from the industry’s widely-trusted ratings service provider, Nielsen TV Audience Measurement. From July 1 to 31 (with July 22 to 31 based on overnight data), GMA posted an average total day people audience share of 41.8 percent in the National Urban Television Audience Measurement (NUTAM), beating ABS-CBN's 36.7 percent. GMA’s solid ratings performance was a result of the Network’s continued leadership across all dayparts. The Kapuso Network strengthened its lead in the morning block, registering 38.6 percent people audience share as against ABS-CBN’s 34.9 percent. GMA likewise posted a bigger margin in the afternoon block with 43.4 percent, while ABS-CBN only managed to get 35.9 percent. In the evening block, GMA was also ahead of competition with an average of 42 percent versus ABS-CBN’s 38 percent. The Kapuso Network continued its dominance in the viewer-rich areas of Urban Luzon and Mega Manila, which respectively account for 72 and 59 percent of all urban viewers in the country. GMA recorded an average total day people audience share of 46.1 percent in Urban Luzon, which toppled ABS-CBN’s 31.3 percent. Similarly in Mega Manila (with official data from July 1 to 21), the Kapuso Network ruled competition with an average total day people audience share of 47.2 percent versus ABS-CBN’s 29.5 percent. More GMA shows also made it to the list of top programs in NUTAM with Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho (KMJS) keeping its spot as the most watched Kapuso program nationwide. The newly-launched Kapuso telefantasya and Alden Richards-starrer Victor Magtanggol immediately entered the list following KMJS. Joining them were Magpakailanman, 24 Oras, Lip Sync Battle Philippines, Pepito Manaloto, Kambal, Karibal, Daig Kayo ng Lola Ko, and The Clash. Completing the top-rating programs list were The Cure, Amazing Earth, Inday Will Always Love You, 24 Oras Weekend, Wowowin, Imbestigador, You’re My Destiny, Tadhana, Sunday Pinasaya, Eat Bulaga, and Contessa. Kapuso programs also dominated the Urban Luzon and Mega Manila lists, respectively taking 23 and 25 spots out of the top 30. More viewers nationwide also preferred GMA Network’s coverage of Manny Pacquiao’s fight last July 15 as well as President Rodrigo Duterte’s third State of the Nation Address (SONA) last July 23. GMA’s coverage of the much-awaited bout between Manny Pacquiao and Lucas Matthysse garnered a people audience share of 49.1 percent in NUTAM which topped ABS-CBN’s 30.8 percent. “SONA 2018: The GMA News Special Coverage” was likewise the most watched with 41.2 percent overnight people audience share in NUTAM versus ABS-CBN’s 32.6 percent. Nielsen data is gathered through a greater number of sampled homes nationwide in comparison to Kantar Media. With approximately 900 more homes surveyed in Total Urban and Rural Philippines compared to Kantar, Nielsen data is statistically considered more representative of the total TV population. In 2018, Nielsen TV Audience Measurement's client pool covers a total of 34 clients/subscribers consisting of 8 local TV networks including ABS-CBN, TV5, Aksyon TV, CNN Philippines, and Viva Communications Inc., among others; 3 regional clients; 2 blocktimers; and 21 agencies (17 media agencies, 3 consulting agencies, 1 digital agency)......»»

Category: newsSource:  voxbikolRelated NewsAug 9th, 2018

PVL: Tigresses crush Red Spikers for a share of the lead

University of Sto. Tomas cruised to its third straight win with an emphatic sweep of San Beda University, 25-18, 25-16, 25-21, Sunday in the Premier Volleyball League Season 2 Collegiate Conference at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. Rookie Eya Laure and sophomore Milena Alessandrini led the unbeaten Tigresses climb at the top spot for a share of the lead with idle Far Eastern University. The Espana-based won all of their matches in straight sets. “Mas ano naman ‘yun, ‘yung mga ganoong instances wine-welcome naman namin ‘yun syempre,” said UST head coach Kungfu Reyes of their perfect run. Laure hammered 12 attacks and a pair of kill blocks for 14 points while Alessandrini chipped in 11 markers and seven excellent receptions for UST. The Tigresses uncorked 45 points off kills and played consistently at the net to frustrate the Lady Red Spikers’ hitters. San Beda dropped to 0-2 slate tied with other NCAA teams San Sebastian College and College of St. Benilde. Nieza Viray was the only Lady Red Spiker in double figures with 17 points while Nieza Viray and Kimberly Manzano combined for 10 markers.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 29th, 2018

PBA: Balkman not too concerned about Finals matchups: 'There s no I in team'

The 2018 PBA Commissioner's Cup Finals will have its share of intriguing matchups. At the top of course is the highly-anticipated clash between June Mar Fajardo and Greg Slaughter at the center spot. After that, imports Renaldo Balkman and Justin Brownlee will square off as the former champion teammates now dispute another title. But for Balkman, none of those matchups matter. For him, the most important one of all is the obvious one and that's San Miguel vs. Ginebra. "There's no I in team," Balkman said. "We gotta play as a team, I gotta play with my team, with my teammates. We gotta play team basketball," he added. It doesn't mean that Balkman is dimissing the individual matchups though. But for the upcoming Finals, the team that plays better as the unit should ultimately score the championship. That's what counts in the end anyway. "There's no one-on-one out there. May the best man win. And whoever plays team basketball and come out there and play together and plays great defense thats who will win the championship," Balkman said. "At the end of the day, win, lose, or draw, whoever wins we'll still gonna be friends, brothers -- whatever you're gonna call 'em -- on and off the court. But I know it's gonna be a dogfight out there when we go in between those four lines," he added.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 25th, 2018

PVL: UP transferee at the forefront of AU’s offensive might

As at it was in the last season NCAA finals between Arellano University and eventual champion University of Perpetual Help, Christian dela Paz, 20, is again leading the offensive drive of the Chiefs in the Premier Volleyball League Season 2 Collegiate Conference.      The 20-year-old former UP Fighting Maroon sizzled with 24 points in Arellano’s debut in the PVL Saturday against Adamson University to underscore the leading role he is to take again on his third year with the Chiefs.    To set the record straight, the soft-spoken hotel & restaurant management student from Parang, Marikina, Rizal, said he left the UP squad because of differences with the coach, not because of the lack of playing time. Standing five-foot-nine, dela Paz, one of superstar Marck Espejo’s teammates in Sta. Elena High School in Marikina, leaps so high he can outsmart the taller blockers on the other side of the court whether he is near or far from the net.   Stories to tell     Dela Paz takes understandable pride in Espejo’s phenomenal rise and singular achievements in the sport being products of the same town. He relishes telling and retelling how dominant a player the multi-awarded former Ateneo Blue Eagle was as early as then and where their high school team was competing.  Middle blocker Christian Segovia, 24, Demmy Lapuz, 19, and Kim Tan, 18, who help ease dela Paz’s scoring load, also have interesting stories to share.       Segovia, born and bred in Tondo and studying HRM as well, says in Filipino: “I should have been playing for FEU, not with Arellano. I was already listed on the FEU team barely a week before the UAAP opened. My mother, already frustrated with my poor grades, got wind of it and immediately pulled me out of the team.       “I was transferred to Arellano where I earned good grades that pleased my mother. I got back into volleyball and showed her I could balance sport and studies this time around. Now, my mother, grandmother and three siblings are always watching my games.”     Yolanda survivor    Lapuz says he had an auspicious beginning with the Chiefs. He was already a starter on his rookie year when Arellano reached the finals against Perpetual last year.      This Tacloban City native was in third year high school when Typhoon Yolanda battered his place of birth in November 2013.       He recalls the ordeal in Filipino, “We were lucky to be living in a subdivision on a mountain slope. The roof of the house was blown away but we survived. The great destruction and the stench of death all around us was one experience everyone should not be subjected to.”       Learning and enjoying volleyball in his physical education classes in UDM had, according to Tan, weaned him away from basketball. The same school gave him his first training in volleyball; he became competent at it.       Higher tuition fees drove his family to seek other schools for him. He enrolled in NU and stayed there without playing volleyball for three years until his barkada in Arellano convinced him to try out for a spot on their varsity team.       He tried out and was taken in. Only a rookie, he started for the Chiefs in their first PVL game, making him a shoo-in for Arellano’s NCAA squad next season.       The other members of the Arellano Chiefs are Roi Domingo, setter Edmark Meneses, Adrian Villados, Tonell Arellano, Jethro Cabillan, Joshua Esguerra, Junnel Cacam, Jesrael Liberato and Evo Rinon        .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 23rd, 2018

NU Bullpups to wear the flag in 2018 Asean School Games

Not even a month after playing for Batang Gilas in the 2018 FIBA Under-17 World Cup, Gerry Abadiano, Terrence Fortea, and Carl Tamayo will be playing for flag and country anew in the 2018 Asean School Games. The three national youth team players banner the Philippine team represented by Nazareth School of National University in the regional meet scheduled for July 19 to 27 in Malaysia. Earlier in the month, Abadiano, Fortea, and Tamayo were key cogs for Batang Gilas who registered the country’s best finish in the FIBA U17 Worlds at 13th place. Now, heady guard Abadiano, streaky shooter Fortea, and versatile big man Tamayo will be joined by Harold Alarcon, Aaron Buensalida, Vince Cuajao, Dom Dayrit, John Felicida, Cyril Gonzales, Kevin Quiambao, Joshua Ramirez, Reyland Torres. Of course, multi-titled mentor Goldwyn Monteverde will be calling the shots for Team Philippines backed by Freego. NU was awarded the right to represent the Filipinos after winning the 2018 Palarong Pambansa earlier in the year. They will be competing against the best young talent Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, and Thailand have to offer. In the girls tournament, Chiang Kai Shek College, supported by SM, will be defending its title. —— Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 18th, 2018

PBA: Hotshots import Wayne Chism enjoyed playing against former team NLEX

Wednesday night at the Mall of Asia Arena, Wayne Chism made his return to the PBA, suiting up for the Magnolia Hotshots Pambansang Manok.  Making Chism's conference debut more interesting was that he went up against his former team in the NLEX Road Warriors.  Already their fourth reinforcement this conference after Vernon Macklin, Curtis Kelly, and Justin Jackson all came and went, the playoff-chasing Magnolia now pin their hopes on the 6-foot-9 former Best Import.  And he delivered.  In his first game back, Chism put up 27 points to go with eight rebounds, four assists, three blocks, and two steals, leading the Hotshots to a 116-89 win over the Road Warriors.  Not bad for someone who's still adjusting to a new system.  For the 31-year old however, playing against his former mentor in Coach Yeng Guiao was the most enjoyable part of his return.  "It was a good game, I enjoyed myself out there today, especially against Coach Yeng and my former teammates." Chism said after the win.  Chism played with for NLEX in the 2017 PBA Commissioner's Cup.  "It's always feelings with Coach, I mean we've been together for a while and this is the first time I'm playing against him and against his team. It was very tough to start off, 'cause I know Coach know me and what my tendencies are, so I had to adjust real quick." Chism added. "Other than that, I'm very happy I played against him just to see how it is on the other side. It was fun, I really enjoyed it." It also took a while for Chism to adjust to playing against his former teammates, jokingly saying that he wanted to assist them, but obviously couldn't.  "Everybody misses each other, I missed 'em too, but playing against 'em, being on the opposite side, it was very challenging 'cause I wanted to pass 'em the ball, but I couldn't."  "Other than that, it was very good to be out there with them and share the game with them again." Chism added.  As far as the win, which was important for the Hotshots as they continue to push for a spot in the playoffs, Chism said that it was about building confidence, more than anything.  "It was very important, today's game, to get my teammates' confidence up, and show 'em that we can win games and we can get them back and get them more confidence and get them back on the winning track." Magnolia closes out the elimination round against defending champions San Miguel on Saturday, July 7th at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 4th, 2018

Davao snares 2nd MPBL win

Ex-pro Leo Najorda and Emanuel Calo fired 21 points apiece as newcomer Davao Occidental-Cocolife continued its impressive start with a 90-78 drubbing of Quezon City-Black Mamba on Tuesday in the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League Datu Cup in Pasig City. Davao gained share of top spot in the South with Muntinlupa at 2-0.---CEDELF P. TUPAS...Keep on reading: Davao snares 2nd MPBL win.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJun 27th, 2018

Meralco stops streaking Alaska, gains share of 2nd spot

Meralco continued its upward trajectory and shot down Alaska, 89-74, to force a tie in second place in the 2018 PBA Commissioner's Cup Sunday at Smart Araneta Coliseum. The Bolts won their fourth straight game and in the process, stopped the Aces' seven-game winning run as both teams got to identical 7-2 records. Brushing off the tight 41-40 first half, the Bolts went into the offensive and outscored the Aces, 32-17, in the third quarter to build a 73-57 buffer heading into the fourth. Alaska tried to counter with an 8-0 run to start the fourth to pull within eight, 73-65, but the Bolts were quick to retaliate with an 11-0 sprint capped off by a five-point swing by Jared Dil...Keep on reading: Meralco stops streaking Alaska, gains share of 2nd spot.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJun 17th, 2018