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Maghihintay lang ako dito [for Marck] -- Kianna Dy

We've heard Marck Espejo's side of the question. Now it's Kianna Dy's turn. It's never easy once a couple goes into a long-distance relationship. May it be due to work, travel, immigration, or any other cause, not being physically there for your special someone will take a lot of courage, determination, and of course, love. The UAAP Season 78 women's volleyball Finals MVP said that she is willing to wait for the five-time UAAP MVP as he makes history by joining Oita Miyoshi Weisse Adler, one of the teams of the V1 League, Japan's premier volleyball circuit. "Napag-usapan naman na," Espejo then said about the couple's talk about the move. "Syempre supportive naman siya and alam niya naman na ito talaga yung gusto ko. And alam ko naman na pupuntahan niya ako dun," he added. While we won't be seeing Espejo until a good chunk of 2019 had passed, Dy, who was in the DLSU Lady Spikers' meet-and-greet at the Henry Sy Sr. Hall of the DLSU Taft Campus last Saturday, she said a special message that brought kilig for you and me. "I'm super proud of him, because I think it's the first time that a Filipino is going to play [in the Japanese league], and is considered to be an import. Super proud of him. He's making his mark internationally, so I'll support him and maghihintay lang ako dito," KKD said with a big smile on her face. KKD on Marck Espejo's Japan stint: "I'm super proud." Also: "Maghihintay lang ako dito."@abscbnsports — Philip Martin Matel (@philipptionary) June 9, 2018 Leaving Taft as a three-time champion, Dy also left a message for the incoming and aspiring Lady Spikers, who eventually will be part of the hunt in pursuing the team's 12th title. "Mag-tiyaga lang kayo and you know that it won't be easy. But you have to work hard. Patience lang. Patience sa teammates, patience kay Coach. Makuha nyo rin ang championship." Dy, who came in late due to graduation practice also thanked the hundreds of supporters, who braved the unpleasant weather and came to the campus to show support for their beloved team. KKD gets greeted by rousing greeting from fans who braved terrible weather. Kianna came in late from grad practice. @abscbnsports pic.twitter.com/bWOz4mCHry — Philip Martin Matel (@philipptionary) June 9, 2018 "Sobrang thankful ako kasi pumunta sila [sa Grand Fans' day'] ang sama pa naman ng weather. Ang lakas ng hangin, ang lakas ng ulan, so nag-effort pa talaga noong pumunta sila dito."   __   Follow this writer on Twitter, @philipptionary......»»

Category: sportsSource: abscbn abscbnJun 11th, 2018

Nat l women s volleyball team hopefuls take coaching change positively

The coaching change came as a surprise to most of the national women’s volleyball team hopefuls, but the players received the appointment of Shaq Delos Santos as replacement for resigned mentor Ramil De Jesus positively. Delos Santos met with some of the national team candidates on Tuesday at the Arellano University-Legarda Gym together with his assistants Kungfu Reyes and Bryan Esquibel and Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Inc. vice president Peter Cayco. LVPI appointed the Petron coach to the position after De Jesus, who took the coaching duty last April and conducted two tryouts attended by the country’s top volleybelles, stepped down two weeks ago. Delos Santos is tasked to form and train a team for the Jakarta Palembang Asian Games in September, the AVC Asia Cup in Thailand the following month and the 2019 Manila Southeast Asian Games.      “Nabigla ako na nagpalit ulet ng coach. We're in good hands naman with coach Shaq. He's a good coach, he has a good system. I'm looking forward to working with him,” said Cocolife libero Denden Lazaro, who was with 15 other hopefuls during the pool meeting. “Sa aming mga players kailangan lang naman namin maging open sa lahat kasi there’s no permanent naman talaga and ‘yun nga syempre kami mga players susunod lang kami kung ano papagawa sa amin ng coaches, ng staff,” said Jaja Santiao. “Okay lang naman na may pagbabago kasi si coach Shaq din naman is one of the best coaches din dito sa Pilipinas so go lang.” Petron’s Mika Reyes, the Nationals’ team captain last year during the AVC Asian Senior Women’s Championship and Kuala Lumpur SEA Games, was informed of the changes a few days ago.    “Actually hindi ko alam na nagpalit muna. Ang sabi lang may final tryouts. So okay. And then siguro two to three days ago, dun ko lang nalaman talaga. Mga Sunday ata yun,” she said. “Si coach sabi nya ‘Ye punta ka sa tryout ha.’ Tapos sabi ko okay coach. Tapos may nagsabi sa akin na teammate ko na sya na daw yung coach.” Reyes played for De Jesus for five years in De La Salle, in the Philippine Superliga for Meralco and F2 Logistics. The middle blocker bannered the 2018 PSL Grand Prix champion Petron under Delos Santos.      “Nagulat lang ako syempre coach ko rin before si coach Ramil, akala ko siya na,” she added. “Pero okay lang din naman, at least ito coach namin. Siguro yung advantage lang is alam ko na yung sistema nya.” Aby Marano, who during most of her volleyball career played under De Jesus, said that she was one of the first to know of her F2 Logistics mentor’s plan to step down. According to LVPI, De Jesus decided to quit his post because of conflict of schedule with his duties as coach for DLSU, the Baby Spikers and F2 Logistics. “Positive pa rin kami, whether nagpalit ng coach o hindi. Dapat hindi kami maapektuhan. Sa kanila na 'yun eh, ang kailangan namin mag-focus sa ensayo para magpalakas at magpahusay pa. Okay naman din 'yung set ng coaches na nakilala namin today. I don't think there will be a problem,” said Marano, a veteran internationalist who donned the tri-colors in the past two SEA Games and in the AVC Asian Seniors. “Magulo, siyempre, ganoon 'yung nangyare. Personal na decision 'yun ni coach Ramil eh so we all respect that. Ang laki talaga ng responsibilty niya sa mga teams niya. Wala naman kaming masasabi sa decision ni coach Ramil,” Marano continued. “Siyempre, na-brokenhearted nga kami,” she added. “Ako, personally, hindi naman ako bumabata. Gusto ko, bago ako mag-retire, maging coach ko siya sa National Team. Kung hindi naman papalarin, wala akong magagawa.” Also in attendance during the first meeting with the new set of coaches were Kim Kianna Dy, Dawn Macandili, Majoy Baron, Dindin Santiago-Manabat, Rebecca Rivera, Mylene Paat, Sisi Rondina, Kim Fajardo, Rhea Dimaculangan, Maika Ortiz, CJ Rosario and Ces Molina. Creamline's Alyssa Valdez and Jia Morado were supposed to attend the meeting but were caught in a traffic jam in Katipunan after their training while Myla Pablo was training with Pocari Sweat. Other players in the pool who skipped the meeting were Tots Carlos, Bea De Leon, Kath Arado, Royse Tubino, Lourdes Clemente, Elaine Kasilag, Jasmine Nabor, Maddie Madayag, Cha Cruz-Behag, Ara Galang, Mel Gohing, MJ Phillips, Isa Molde, Jho Maraguinot, Rachel Anne Daquis, Bernadeth Pons and Kyla Atienza.    The pool will start its training on Thursday.    ---   Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 5th, 2018

UAAP Season 81: Arado, Mendrez lead U-23 hopefuls

Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Inc. has formally extended its invitation to all UAAP schools to allow their girls’ and women’s volleyball players to try out for the national pool. University of the East athletic director Rod Roque, also the UAAP representative to the LVPI, distributed the invitation letters to members of the UAAP Board during their meeting Tuesday.   “Sa akin pinadaan ni Mr. Ariel Paredes (LVPI SecGen) and tamang-tamang may UAAP Board meeting kami. So i-disseminate ko na sa kanila ‘yung info na open ang tryout for Under 23.” LVPI earlier this month announced a two-day tryout on January 24-25 at the Arellano University Gym in Taft Ave for the purpose of expanding the national pool that will see action in a number of international tournaments including the Asian Women’s U-23 Volleyball Championship in Hanoi, Vietnam on July 13 to 21. Leading the list of hopefuls are Lady Warriors Kat Arado and Me-Anne Mendrez, who both represented the country in the 2016 Asian Women’s U-19 Volleyball Championship in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand back. The PHI finished 10th in the 15-nation field.      “Dito sa akin number one na very, very qualified si Kat Arado,” said Roque, who will accompany his players in the tryout. Arado was also invited in the seniors national team tryout last year.   “Kasi siya lang ‘yung nag-decline last year kasi ‘yung studies niya tapos may Generika, may UE siya sabi niya ‘sir hindi ko na kaya’. So nag-back out muna siya sa national team but this year tapos na ‘yung Generika nila tapos last playing year niya sa UAAP sabi niya sa akin, ‘sir ready na ko sa national team,’” Roque said. “So dadalhin ko siya sa 25 tapos si Me-Anne Mendrez. Silang dalawa kasi silang dalawa ang pinaka-qualified.” LVPI hopes to see other young talents like Cocolife's Kalei Mau, DLSU-Zobel's Angel Canino, University of Sto. Tomas' Milena Alessandrini and Eya Laure, Faith Nisperos and Alyssa Solomon on National U, University of the Philippines' Tots Carlos, and Air Force's Dell Palomata in the two-day tryouts. The federation has also extended invitations to the Philippine Superliga, Premier Volleyball League and the NCAA.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 15th, 2019

PBA: Rookie Bong Quinto looking to make the most of opportunity given by Meralco

Former do-it-all Letran forward Bong Quinto was definitely the surprise of the 2018 PBA Draft.  Not because he was taken too early, but rather because many believe he was taken way too late.  Quinto was expected to be a top-five pick, or at least in the first round, but instead fell to the second pick of the second round, taken by the Meralco Bolts.  Immediately, analysts and experts already labeling him as the year's draft steal.  While being overlooked by the other teams still stings a bit for the former Knight, now it's all about proving that they made a mistake by passing him up.  "Syempre, kahit ako din minsan, iniisip ko na dapat nasa first round ako, pero kailangan mag-move on talaga doon, tapos ginawa ko na lang siyang motivation para i-prove yung sarili ko na deserving din naman ako sa first round," Quinto shared with ABS-CBN Sports.  The important thing is that now, he's on a PBA team, and as expected, there's a bit of an adjustment period.  "Sobrang laking adjustment talaga, kasi yun nga, dito kailangan speed talaga, kailangan mabilis ka." "Sobrang nag-aadjust pa talaga ako, kasi bagong mga teammates, bagong pakikisama ulit, mga bagong coaches, so medyo naninibago ulit ako sa sistema, kasi sa Letran, basa-basa lang. Dito read, tsaka kailangan mabilis ka talaga," he continued.  Back in college, Quinto was a bruising three that could easily play as a four. Now however, he's in the big leagues, and he'll need to adjust to playing a smaller position.  "Sa ngayon, kinakapa ko pa yung movement, yung mga galaw nila, pinag-aaralan ko pa yung skills nila, kung saan sila malakas, ganun. Ako gusto ko i-improve yung passing and yung dribbling, kasi dito mag-guard na talaga ako eh, tres na yung laro ko dito, hindi na ako pwede mag-big man dito. Yung scoring din, kailangan mo i-prove sa kanila na hindi sila nag-kamali sa pag-pick sa akin." More than anything, Quinto is excited to give back to the Meralco side for giving him the opportunity of realizing a dream by playing in the PBA.  "Sobrang excited ko na kasi dream ‘to eh, pangarap ‘to. Panghahawakan ko lang talaga na wag sayangin yung opportunity na binigay nila." "Sana makatulong ako sa team,sa Meralco, kasi siyempre pangarap ko na makapaglaro sa PBA, and sila yung nakapag-bigay ng opportunity sa akin, so bibigay ko talaga yung best ko para makatulong sa team," he concluded. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 9th, 2019

Travel Goals: Pinoy athletes celebrate the New Year in style

With most of the major sports leagues in the Philippines currently on a break to start 2019, some of your favorite athletes took some time to unwind before another year of grinding fully begins. Star athletes flew to different parts of the Philippines and the world to unwind, checking off their travel goals before they reach their actual career goals this year. Some of the reigning UAAP women's volleyball champions DLSU Lady Spikers trekked to the Summer Capital of the Philippines to soak up some fresh air before their title defense in UAAP season 81 this February.         View this post on Instagram                 •Gon’ slay, okay• - @beyonce . . . 📷 @_maylunaaa A post shared by Ernestine Tiamzon (@ernietiamzon) on Jan 6, 2019 at 2:13am PST           View this post on Instagram                 All smiles, 2019 💞 A post shared by May Luna (@_maylunaaa) on Jan 5, 2019 at 8:12pm PST Meanwhile, former Lady Spikers Dawn Macandili and Kim Kianna Dy both travelled abroad to enjoy nature and to surprise a loved one, respectively.  The multi-awarded libero went to Australia with her family, while KKD flew to Japan to surprise her boyfriend, Marck Espejo, who has been reaching goals playing in the Japan V. Premier League.         View this post on Instagram                 “Di na maka-solo” -Donato (2018) A post shared by Dawn Macandili (@dawn_macandili) on Dec 31, 2018 at 2:45am PST           View this post on Instagram                 Yannn, ginagalit niyo kasi si Dudut eh 😑🤣 —— Kidding aside, never been more proud of you! Watching you play the same level even internationally makes me so proud. It was worth every second & mile just to see and be with you ❤️ see u in 4 months ❤️ A post shared by Kim Kianna Dy (@kiannady) on Jan 6, 2019 at 12:57am PST Woman In Action Gretchen Ho tagged along fellow former Ateneo Lady Eagles Jem Ferrer and Dzi Gervacio as they scaled Mount Pamitinan in Rodriguez, Rizal.         View this post on Instagram                 Started my year right 🤙🏻🏞 All is well, all is well ☺️ #womaninaction ➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖➖ There have been a lot of things going on with my career and personal life. People know I like pursuing my passions no matter how difficult they are. But despite my #womaninaction lifestyle, I still make sure to get my #adulting right!! - - @prulifeuk’s #PRULifeYourTerm makes it easy for me to reach my financial goals as it is the ONLY renewable term insurance in the country that can be upgraded with an investment component rider. Happy to move forward as secure as I can be :) #prulifeuk - While it’s good to make the most of “NOW”, we must not lose sight of the future. Here we go! #2019 #mountainclimbing #mountaineering #philippines #mountpamitinan #rizal #montalban #mtpamitinan A post shared by Gretchen Ho (@gretchenho) on Jan 7, 2019 at 4:50pm PST           View this post on Instagram                 Fearless. A post shared by Jamenea Ferrer (@jemferrer) on Jan 5, 2019 at 10:16pm PST Michele Gumabao got a much-deserved break after a successful Premier Volleyball League title run with the Creamline Cool Smashers, posing while in an unidentified, but picturesque island.         View this post on Instagram                 And so another adventure begins ☀️ 👙@soakswimwearph 📸 XT100 @fujifilmph @fujifilmphlifestyle #ShowMeYourWorldXT100 #FujifilmPHXMicheleGumabao #fujifilmlifestyle A post shared by Michele Gumabao (@gumabaomichele) on Jan 7, 2019 at 3:23am PST Olympian Hidilyn Diaz made sure to promote her hometown of Zamboanga in her #TravelGoals post, endorsing the wonderful 11 Islands in Zamboanga Peninsula.         View this post on Instagram                 Kung nasa Zamboanga Peninsula kayo baka maconsider niyong pumunta sa Onse isla at malamawi. Suggestion ko magdala kayo ng mat or duyan para makapagsunbath kayo at matulog under the coconut tree or under the sun then marinig niyo ang waves and air. Sobrang refreshing and relaxing! 📸 @imjulius 😎 🌴 🏝 🏖 #Zamboanga #vacation A post shared by Hidilyn Diaz OLY (@hidilyndiaz) on Jan 6, 2019 at 3:45am PST The entire Ildefonso family bonded in Japan capturing some IG-worthy photos along the way.        .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 8th, 2019

Poy Erram hopes to help NLEX become a top-tier team in the PBA

Newly-acquired NLEX center Poy Erram knows just how much the Road Warriors needed to give up just to be able to bring him in.  Erram was the focal point of a three-team trade between NLEX, Talk N' Text, and Blackwater that saw the Road Warriors part ways with draft picks Paul Desiderio and Abu Tratter, as well as rotation big men Dave Marcelo and Mike Miranda in order to land Erram from the Elite, along with Philip Paredes from the KaTropa.  In Erram, NLEX finally gets a star bigman that they've always wanted to pair with their loaded back court that includes playmakers Kevin Alas and Kiefer Ravena among others.  Already, Road Warriors head coach Yeng Guiao is happy with what he's seeing with his new star center.  "We’re very happy. It gives us a deeper front line, our system is well-fitted to his style, he can step out and shoot the outside shots, he’s also not a slow big. Big siya pero may speed and quickness for a big, then he can post-up, he can use his length there," shared Guiao. "He’s going to be an impact player, he’s going to make an immediate impact on our team, and I think yung complementary yung game niya to Asi [Taulava], to JR [Quiñahan], and to our other bigs, so we’re hoping that we’re proven right with the decision that we made," he added.  #PBA2019 | New NLEX big man Poy Erram getting shots up. Erram was sent to NLEX via a three-team trade in exchange for first round picks Paul Desiderio and Abu Tratter. | @abscbnsports pic.twitter.com/Vyt2HJd4ef — Santino Honasan🎈 (@honasantino) January 7, 2019 For the 29-year old former Ateneo de Manila standout, knowing how much NLEX was willing to deal for him is part of the motivation to do well and make an immediate impact with the Road Warriors.  "Yung pressure, hindi naman mawawala yun, andiyan lang naman talaga yan. Number one motivation ko siya kasi yun nga, marami silan binitawan na players para sa akin, and then, ayoko din isipin na andito ako para naka-center sa akin yung [attention], hindi naman ganun eh, siyempre matagal na silang magkakasama, kailangan ko mag-adjust sa sistema ni Coach Yeng, siyempre kailangan ko mag-adjust sa players, sa mga characters ng mga players," Erram shared with ABS-CBN Sports.  Erram adds that he also relishes the opportunity to be able to play with veterans, the likes of Taulava, Larry Fonacier, and Quiñahan, among others, a luxury that he didn't necessarily have during his time with Blackwater.  "Motivation din kasi kailangan ko pang mag-improve, kasi marami pa akong i-improve eh, and I think this is the best team for me, kasi I have Asi Taulava, I have JR Quiñahan, I have Kuya Larry, Kuya Cyrus [Baguio], veterans na sadly wala dun sa team namin noon sa Blackwater before. For me ito yung best chance ko mag-improve and mag-grow pa yung skills ko and yung talent ko and yung attitude ko towards the game." Having already played for Coach Guiao before with Gilas, Erram says that the transition period wasn't as difficult.  "In terms of transition, hindi naman ako nahirapan kasi naging coach ko din si Coach Yeng sa Gilas, so most of the system na tinatakbo dito sa NLEX, tinakbo niya sa Gilas, so when it comes to mga set plays, defense, hindi naman na ako nahirapan. May mga kaunti lang kasi siyempre hindi naman niya masyado dinetalye nung sa Gilas. Dito mas detalye talaga eh, so mas kaunting adjustment, kaunting-kaunti lang, madali ko lang din naman na ma-gamay dahil yung teammates ko nga, tinutulungan din nila ako, and then yung iba naging teammates ko nung college."  Plus, it also helps, Erram added, being able to play with fellow former Blue Eagles, especially guys like Emman Monfort and Juami Tiongson, whom he got to play with back in the UAAP.  "Laking tulong kasi sila Emman, sila Juami, nakakasama ko yan sa labas eh, kahit magkakalaban kami, lumalabas kami, so pagdating dito, ang laking tulong kasi alam na nila kung paano ako maglaro, alam na nila ugali ko, kung paano yung work ethic ko sa game, alam na nila and then when it comes to adjustment naman, ang dali din kasi sobrang approachable ng mga tao kasi same school kami, so mas madali na may mag-ga-guide sa akin na same school ko tapos nakalaro ko pa." "Ang laking tulong, and excited ako kasi for the first time, makakasama ko si Emman ulit after college, and si Kuya Larry, never ko pa nakasama, so ang laking bagay nun para sa akin," Erram added. Obviously, the Road Warriors expect Erram to become an integral part of their team starting this season, otherwise they would not have pulled the trigger on the deal.  The six-foot-eight slotman, however, doesn't want to overestimate what he brings to the table for NLEX. Instead, he maintains that he's here to do what he's asked for.  "[Kung anong madadala ko for NLEX], hindi ko pa masasabi for now, kasi hindi pa ako naglalaro eh, hindi pa nakikita ng tao na naglalaro ako with NLEX, so ang mindset ko is every game, every practice, gagawin ko yung mga pinapagawa ni Coach, kung anong kailangan gawin, and kung ano man yung kailangan kong i-improve na aspect ng game ko, yun yung i-improve ko para mas makatulong ako sa team," With the arrival of Erram as well as the return of play maker Kevin Alas, Guiao is confident that NLEX has a chance at once again being a contender in the Philippine Cup, much like they were a season ago, when they made it all the way to the semifinals.  If Erram does help NLEX to a similar deep run in the season-opening conference or if he gets to help them over the hump, then well and good, he expressed.  "If ever man na malampasan namin and magawa namin yun, makatulong ako sa team na magawa namin yun, maganda yung nilalaro ko, for me it’s a plus na eh, kasi siyempre hindi naman ito naka-center sa akin. We have Larry, we have the veterans, tsaka si Kiefer darating pa, si Kevin andiyan na, itong team na ‘to contender na sila bago pa ako dumating. Para madagdag ako, hindi ko alam, titignan natin kung anong maitutulong ko sa team." Being a definite presence inside the paint, his defense is the one thing that Erram is sure of, as far as what he brings to the table is concerned.  "Matangkad ako eh, siguro ang maibibigay ko sa team ay yung defense ko, yun talaga yung calling card ko every time I play, so for now yun lang muna siguro ang alam ko na mabibigay ko sa kanila, kasi when it comes to offense, maraming offensive player dito eh, mabibigat yung pangalan nila, yung kalibre ng player," he stated. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 7th, 2019

UAAP: L-Jay-RJ looks like FEU s next great backcourt

Jasper Parker and Axel Inigo will no longer play for Far Eastern University. Like they always are, however, the Tamaraws remain full-stocked at the backcourt. Of course, veterans Hubert Cani and Wendell Comboy are now ready and raring for their turn at the driver’s seat. And behind those two await a pair of products from the green and gold’s high school program who may very well end up to be the next ones in the school’s long line of great guards. Already there is L-Jay Gonzales who, in his spot minutes on the floor in his first year in the Seniors squad, already began opening eyes. Described as a lead guard who has the both the triple-doubling talent and the burst of Russell Westbrook, the 5-foot-9 playmaker flashed glimpses of that as a rookie reserve to the likes of Parker, Inigo, Cani, and Comboy. And now, Gonzales is just waiting for his Paul George to arrive. “Ako po, excited lang talaga na magkasama kami ulit,” he said. He was talking about RJ Abarrientos, his former partner-in-crime with the Baby Tamaraws who is finishing up his last playing year in the Juniors. Three years ago, Gonzales and Abarrientos were key cogs in what was a pleasant surprise of a championship for FEU-Diliman. Once Abarrientos finishes up with high school and moves on up to college, the two are nothing but determined to bring their school back to the mountaintop in the collegiate ranks. “Nag-usap na nga po kami ni L-Jay tapos sabi niya sa akin, bahala ka muna sa Jrs. kasi pagdating mo naman dito, ako bahala sayo,” RJ, the nephew of Philippine basketball legend Johnny, shared. He then continued, “Basta pagdating mo rito, ibi-build natin ‘tong bagong FEU.” Abarrientos can do what Gonzales can on the basketball court, albeit without the same sort of explosiveness. What he does have over his running mate, though, is size – standing at 5-foot-11 and possessing a stocky built. That is exactly why a backcourt pairing of Gonzales and Abarrientos looks like it will not have any holes. “Sinasabi talaga sa amin, yung connection namin, nung Juniors pa lang, nakita na kung anong magagawa. Sana, mapakita rin namin yun sa Seniors,” Abarrientos said. Still, all of that is easier said than done and, without a doubt, the L-Jay and RJ connection still has to prove itself when it finally goes online for the FEU Tamaraws. “Siyempre, nakaka-pressure po lalo na sa akin kasi makakasabayan ko po ang isang Abarrientos,” Gonzales said. He then continued, “Pero pagbubutihan po namin na mag-click ang duo namin.” --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 3rd, 2019

VOLLEYBALL IS LIFE: A look back at Philippine volleyball in 2018

Glorious victories, dynasties, historic feats, controversies and memorable moments once again highlighted another fruitful year for Philippine volleyball.   Now, let us take a look back in the year that was in volleyball:   DYNASTY Powerhouse teams continued to thrive in the country’s most popular collegiate leagues. Arellano University muscled its way back into the NCAA Season 93 Finals and met a newcomer in San Beda University. The Lady Chiefs did find the Lady Red Spikers as feisty opponents in their first championship meeting, needing five sets to survive San Beda in Game One. But it didn’t take long for Arellano U to stomp its class over the newbies to capture its second straight title and fourth overall crown in five years. De La Salle University painted UAAP Season 80 green after annexing its third straight title handing legendary head coach Ramil De Jesus his third grand slam in the country’s most popular and competitive collegiate league. Second year setter Michelle Cobb stepped up to the challenge of filling the big shoes left by Kim Fajardo and complemented the depth and firepower of DLSU. Far Eastern University, which advanced into the Finals for the first time after a decade, stood no chance against the onslaught of the Lady Spikers, which swept their way onto throne. University of Perpetual Help completed a four-peat in the NCAA juniors after sweeping Letran. Philippine Air Force snatched the Premier Volleyball League men’s Reinforced Conference crown and the Spikers’ Turf Open Conference title. Sisi Rondina cemented her legacy as the UAAP’s queen of the sands after completing a three-peat in women’s beach volleyball. Rondina wrapped her tour of duty with four titles in five years. The Tigers ruled the men’s division.       YEAR OF THE UNDERDOGS San Beda University made great strides in NCAA Season 93 after earning its first-ever Finals appearance behind the efforts of Cesca Racraquin and twins Nieza and Jiezela Viray. The Lady Red Spikers closed the elims with an 8-1 win-loss record and took down Perpetual in the semis. Languishing at the bottom half of the standings since the return of its women’s volleyball program in 2008, Jose Rizal University made history by advancing into the Final Four. Shola Alvarez capped the Lady Bombers’ remarkable season by pocketing the Most Valuable Player award.   Far Eastern University made it to the UAAP women’s volleyball Finals by booting out crowd-favorite Ateneo de Manila University in the semis.  For the first time in five years, the Blue Eagles found themselves in a very difficult position in the Final Four. With a twice-to-win disadvantage, the Marck Espejo-led Ateneo shocked FEU – a team that beat them twice in the elims – to march to its fifth straight championship appearance.      But the real underdog story belonged to NU. After three years of finishing runner-up to the Blue Eagles, the Bulldogs led by Bryan Bagunas finally got their long-awaited revenge as they swept Ateneo off its three-year reign at the throne.     OFF COURT STORIES, CONTROVERSIES University of the East parted ways with head coach Francis Vicente midway in Season 80 after three and a half seasons with the Lady Warriors. Vicente left for ‘personal reasons’ with a UE coaching record of 2-45 (win-loss). Red Warriors head coach Sammy Acaylar also resigned from his post midway in the season. University of Sto. Tomas hitter EJ Laure after months of speculations to the real reason of her sitting out UAAP Season 80 broke her silence by saying that needed time to recover from her right shoulder injury to end all the rumors circulating including an alleged pregnancy.    Sound bites, videos and clips that show collegiate players’ ‘human side’ made its rounds around social media that drew mixed reactions from fans.  Just like in the previous years, controversy filled the formation of the national women’s volleyball team. Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Inc. initially named Ramil De Jesus as the national team coach but just two months after his designation, the multi-titled DLSU mentor resigned from his post citing ‘conflict of schedule’. Shaq Delos Santos took over De Jesus’ spot. Netizens went abuzz when the composition of the national team that participated in the Jakarta-Palembang Asian Games was released as fans give their different views on who should and should not be included in the roster.             LVPI named a new president in Peter Cayco of Arellano U to replace Joey Romasanta during the association’s election.   WRITING HISTORY Smart’s Cuban import Gigi Silva carved a world scoring record in the Philippine Superliga after scoring 56 points in a lost cause against Cocolife in the 2018 Grand Prix. Silva pounded 53 kills and had three aces to land her name in the fourth spot in the women’s world scoring record behind Polina Rahimova of Azerbaijan’s 58 points in 2015 while playing in Japan, American Madison Kingdon’s 57 (2017 Korea Volleyball League) and Bulgarian Elitsa Vasileva’s 57 (2013 Korea Volleyball League). Silva also surpassed the 55 points of Americans Nicole Fawcett (2013 KVL) and Alaina Bergsma, who led Petron to the 2014 PSL Grand Prix crown, (2016 KVL).     Not to be outdone, local volleyball star Marck Espejo had a 55-point explosion of his own in the Blue Eagles’ five-set Game 1 UAAP Final Four win over FEU. The five-time MVP pounded 47 attacks, had six kill blocks and two service aces for the Katipunan-based squad. Espejo scored 11 points in the deciding frame including Ateneo’s last four to seal the win in the match that lasted for two hours and 21 minutes. Espejo’s feat fueled Ateneo’s eventual semis series win over the twice-to-beat Tamaraws.  Espejo and DLSU libero Dawn Macandili were named as the Philippine Sportswriters Association’s 2017 Mr. and Miss Volleyball.     The Philippines saw three players make their mark in the international scene this year as Espejo and sisters Jaja Santiago and Dindin Santiago-Manabat were tapped as imports in Japan’s V. Premier League. Espejo is now playing for Oita Miyoshi Weiss Adler while Jaja and Dindin suit up for Saitama Ageo Medics and Toray Arrows, respectively.     After 36 long years, the Philippines sent a women’s volleyball team to participate in the Jakarta-Palembang Asian Games. The squad won against Hong Kong in straight sets in pool play in the country’s first Asian Games victory since defeating India in the 1982 New Delhi Games. The PHI advanced in the quarterfinals but went home empty-handed. The Filipinas ended up at ninth place in the AVC Asian Cup. Sisi Rondina and Dzi Gervacio made waves in the country’s hosting of the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Manila Open after the duo barged in the quarterfinals. The tandem eventually bowed down to eventual champion Japan. The NU Bulldogs brought its bark into the international scene and howled its way to giving honor to country by winning the ASEAN University Games gold medal at the expense of Thailand. Volleyball proved to be the most talked about sport in the country as #UAAPSeason80Volleyball became the most tweeted sports hashtag in 2018.   SMASHING WIN, BLAZING VICTORY Creamline became the most successful club in the Premier Volleyball League this year after winning its breakthrough Reinforced Conference crown before following it up with a title romp in the Open Conference. Alyssa Valdez finally ended a two-year title drought after leading the Cool Smashers to the Reinforced Conference throne.   Creamline’s Michele Gumabao joined Binibining Pilipinas and represented the country im the 2018 Miss Globe in Albania, landing at the top 15.     Petron lorded it over in the PSL after winning the Grand Prix and All-Filipino Conference titles at the expense of archrival F2 Logistics, which ruled the Invitational Conference. University of the Philippines ended a 36-year title drought by claiming the PVL Collegiate Conference championship and followed it up by reigning supreme in the PSL Collegiate Grand Slam The SiPons tandem of Sisi Rondina and Bernadeth Pons of Petron annexed their second straight PSL Challenge Cup beach volleyball title. University of Perpetual Help reclaimed the NCAA men’s title after taking down Arellano University as the Altas bagged it 11th title overall.           National University took back the title it lost last year in the UAAP boys’ tournament while De La Salle-Zobel bagged the girls’ mint. The Beach Volleyball Republic continued its advocacy of propagating the sport throughout the country.   END OF THE ROAD After winning three straight UAAP titles, the Lady Spikers bid goodbye to its Big Three in Kim Kianna Dy, Majoy Baron and Dawn Macandili. Season 80 saw the end of the six-year Ateneo-DLSU Finals rivalry as the Lady Eagles bowed down to FEU in the semis. The Blue Eagles three-year reign ended at the hands of NU as Ateneo gave its farewell to its greatest men’s volleyball star Marck Espejo and prized setter Ish Povorosa.    NU’s four-year domination in the girls’ division was snapped by DLS-Zobel. After a dry 2018 PVL season, Pocari Sweat parted ways with its franchise player Myla Pablo as newcomer Motolite agreed to buyout the hitter’s last three contract years.      Thai coach Tai Bundit after five years and bringing two titles including a rare tournament sweep to the Lady Eagles finally called it quits after Ateneo’s campaign in UAAP Season 80. Creamline gave Bundit a farewell championship trophy in the PVL.      A NEW BEGINNING It was a colorful 2018, indeed, for volleyball but 2019 is another promising year for the sport. Can the Lady Chiefs complete a three-peat in the NCAA? Newcomers are sure to bring more excitement and interest in the UAAP. DLSU will try to extend its reign for another season while NU is looking for a repeat crown in the men’s side. Another season for the PSL and the PVL will open while the national men’s and women’s team will highlight the country’s Southeast Asian Games hosting.        --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 27th, 2018

Dennis, Dingdong mix work and play this Christmas

Dingdong Dantes and Marian Rivera always make it a point to travel when a series wraps up or before a new one begins. "We usually go on a trip in between projects," Dong told Inquirer Entertainment. "But, this year, we'll probably just be spending the holidays here because I have work. Dito lang kami for Christmas." Dong isn't just busy taping GMA 7's drama series, "Cain at Abel," he'll also be seen promoting "Fantastica," his costarrer with Vice Ganda in this year's Metro Manila Film Festival. The Kapuso heartthrob shared that his most memorable Christmas was in 2014. "It was my last Christmas as a single man," declared Dong, who married Marian on Dec. 30, 2014. "We were al...Keep on reading: Dennis, Dingdong mix work and play this Christmas.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsDec 22nd, 2018

PBA: Party time for Magnolia as Hotshots celebrate 14th title

It's officially party time for Magnolia. The Hotshots celebrated with their fans Friday at the San Miguel headquarters in Ortigas, two days after scoring their 14th title in franchise history. Magnolia beat Alaska in six games to win the 2018 PBA Governors' Cup. It was the team's first championship in four years or since the 2014 Grand Slam season. Present in the victory party are all members of the team led by Finals MVP Mark Barroca, Best Player of the Conference, and import Romeo Travis. "Thank you sa mga fans namin na pumunta dito, sana ngayon mag-enjoy lang tayo. Merry Christmas sa inyo and God bless," Barroca said. "Nagpapasalamat ako sa mga boss namin and sa lahat ng fans sa walang sawang suporta, sana hindi ito yung last natin, sana madagdagan pa," Paul Lee added. Lee won his first championship with Magnolia after arriving to the team two years ago via a blockbuster trade for James Yap. Romeo Travis, who also won his first PBA title, had a very short and sweet message. "Maligayang Pasko!" the import said. Magnolia's win allowed the Purefoods franchise to tie Alaska for second-most titles in PBA history with 14 each. San Miguel remains number one with 25 championships.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 21st, 2018

Kamandag ni Donnie Nietes, muling masusubukan!

May bagong susubok sa kamandag ni Donnie ‘Ahas’ Nietes sa pagharap ng longest-reigning Pinoy boxing champion sa Hapong si Kazuto Ioka sa “Pinoy Pride Presents: Nietes vs Ioka” sa ABS-CBN S+A sa huling araw ng taon (Disyembre 31) ng 9 pm. Halos tatlong buwan ding nagpahinga ang pambato ng Pilipinas nang mag-tabla sila ng katunggali at kapwa-Pinoy na si Aston Palicte sa The Forum sa Inglewood, California, Estados Unidos, noong Setyembre. Haharapin ni Nietes (41-1-5, 23 KOs) si Ioka na may tangang 23-1, 13 KOs na kartada. Pagtatalunan ng dalawa ang bakanteng trono ng World Boxing Organization (WBO) Super Flyweight na dibisyon. Ito rin mismo ang nabigong pagsungkit ni Nietes na sintron kontra kay Palicte. Para sa mananaliksik at boxing analyst na si Atty. Ed Tolentino, si Ioka na ang pinakamahirap na makatapat ni Nietes sa puntong ito ng kanyang karera. “Kalaban na ngayon ni Nietes ang pagtanda at isang batang Ioka na mahilig bumira ng mga suntok. Ang maganda kay Nietes, mahusay siya sa depensa at interesanteng makita kung kaya niya pa ang matinding opensiba na tiyak manggagaling kay Ioka. Ang lamang ni Nietes dito, hindi magalaw ang ulo ni Ioka at halos parati itong nabibitag sa isang sapakang parang away-kanto; at dito niya matitikman ang matinding counter ni Nietes,” bahagi ng analyst. Magkakaroon naman ng replay ang buong kartada ng “Pinoy Pride Presents: Nietes vs Ioka” sa S+A sa Enero 1 ng bagong taon ng 12 am at 7:30 pm. Maaaring mapanood ng live ang kanilang laban sa SKY Sports PPV sa halagang P199, tumawag lang sa 418 0000 o puntahan ang pinakamalapit na opisina ng SKY sa inyong lugar.  Abangan ang bakbakang Nietes at Ioka sa “Pinoy Pride Presents: Neites vs Ioka” sa S+A at S+A HD sa huling araw ng 2018, Disyembre 31 ng 9 pm. Bukod pa riyan, mapapanood din ang “Best of Pinoy Pride 2018” sa darating na Pasko (Disyembre 25) ng 6:30 pm at Disyembre 28 ng 9 pm. Nariyan din ang palabas ng S+A at ALA Boxing na pinamagatang “IDOL,” kung saan magpapamalas ang mga batang boksingero ng kanilang galing sa darating na Disyembre 23 sa ganap na 7 pm. Para sa balita sa sports, sundan ang @ABSCBNSports sa Twitter at Facebook o pumunta sa sports.abs-cbn.com. Para sa updates, i-follow ang @ABSCBNPR sa Twitter, Facebook, at Instagram o bisitahin ang www.abscbnpr.com......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 19th, 2018

NCAA Season 94 volleyball: CSB continues win streak, snaps San Beda’s romp

Klarisa Abriam played clutch in the closing stretch of the fourth set to star in College of St. Benilde’s come-from-behind 17-25, 25-22, 25-19, 29-27, win over the erstwhile unbeaten San Beda University in the NCAA Season 94 women’s volleyball tournament Monday at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan.   The open hitter scored the Lady Blazers’ last three points of the game to hand CSB its fourth straight win for a 4-1 record while putting a stop on the Lady Red Spikers’ 5-game romp. Abriam scored all but one of her game-high 19 points off attacks while adding 17 digs for CSB. Rookie Michelle Gamit and Maritess Pablo scored 12 each while Jan Daguil had seven markers for the Lady Blazers. “Very big siyempre (ang panalo). If everything goes as planned at least hanggang rank no. 2 ka na. Better ‘yun kaysa sa three or sa four ka magsisimula kung papasok ka (sa Final Four),” said CSB coach Jerry Yee, whose squad will go on a long holiday break before marching back into action on January 4 against Lyceum of the Philippines University. “Every game counts dito, one round lang, mabilis eh. So a’yun nakapakaimportante.” Turning the tables around after recovering from a sluggish first set, the Lady Blazers were able to control the fourth set with an 8-3 blitz for a 20-15 lead. But San Beda behind the efforts of Nieza and Jiezela Viray rallied the Lady Red Spikers in a scorching counterattack to take the lead, 21-20. It was a tight race to the finish for both squads before Gamit put CSB at match point, 24-23, off a soft tip. San Beda made a last stand saving four match points including a crosscourt hit by skipper Cesca Racraquin that tied the frame at 27. Abriam broke the Lady Red Spikers’ defensive wall in the next play before sealing the win with a dink off San Beda overreceive. Jeziela Viray led the Lady Red Spikers with 16 points while Nieza Viray and Racraquin had 13 markers each. Meanwhile, the Blazers swept the Red Spikers, 25-21, 25-21, 25-19, in men’s play. Georgie Juani finished with 14 points, Joshua De Sequera got 12 while Francis Basilan and Roneiy Adviento posted 10 each for CSB, which improved to 4-1 card. San Beda fell to 1-5 mark. In juniors division, CSB-La Salle Greenhills beat San Beda, 22-25, 21-25, 25-18, 26-24, 20-18.     The Greenies improved to 2-3 card while the Red Cubs dropped to 3-3.   ---     Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 17th, 2018

UAAP Season 81 volleyball: Mag-La Salle na sila all the way -– Macandili on DLS-Z volleybelles

Top libero Dawn Macandili watched intensely as De La Salle-Zobel inched closer to ending a long high school girls’ volleyball title drought. When the Junior Lady Spikers nailed the last point to topple the four-year reign National University and rule the UAAP Season 81 tournament, Macandili together with the DLS-Z supporters inside the FilOil Flying V Centre on a breezy Sunday afternoon celebrated the triumph that took the Alabang-based squad six years to achieve. From her red leather seat in the courtside section, Macandili, with a big smile on her face cheered loudly for the new generation of Junior Lady Spikers.           “Sobrang nakaka-proud kasi siyempre part din ako ng alumni ng Zobel and nakita ko na gusto ring manalo ng girls and nagawa nila yun,” said Macandili after DLS-Z completed a best-of-three finals series sweep of the Bullpups with a hard-earned, 25-21, 25-23, 15-25, 16-25, 15-8, Game 2 win. Macandili together with F2 Logistics teammate Kim Kianna Dy and Ateneo de Manila University’s Jules Samonte were part of the DLS-Z squad that ruled UAAP Season 75 before the school’s five-year title drought. The defense specialist, who was named 2nd Best Libero in the 2017 Asian Women’s Senior Championship, couldn’t help but admire the Junior Lady Spikers’ composure and determination in the series.   “Sobrang nakaka-stress pala na nanonood lang instead of playing inside the court. Pero bilb na bilib ako sa kanila kasi nandoon ‘yung composure although sobrang bata pa nila. Pero iba na talaga ang level ng volleyball (sa Pilipinas) kahit sa high school pa lang,” she said. Macandili added that if given a chance she’d like to see the core of the squad play together up until college for a team known for its championship culture. “Sobrang prospects sila ng mga college teams. Ngayon pa lang ang gagaling na nila and I look forward to when they’re playing in college na… for La Salle, yes!” she said. “Ituloy na nila, mag-La Salle na sila all the way,” exclaimed Macandili, who joined the DLSU Lady Spikers together with Dy after graduating in high school. The duo helped the Lady Spikers’ complete a three-peat from Season 78 to 80.     Macandili was impressed with skills of towering Alleiah Malaluan and season MVP Angel Canino. She also saw a lot of potential with DLS-Z starting libero Lyka De Leon. “Lahat naman tayo nagi-start somewhere and I can see myself in her na nag-start na ganoon ang level pero nandoon naman yung talent niya and I can see that’s she’s gonna go far,” said Macandili.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 10th, 2018

UP titos Ronnie Magsanoc, Benjie Paras congratulate '16Strong

Gone are the days that Ronnie Magsanoc, Benjie Paras, Eric Altamirano and Joey Guanio are the only benchmarks of University of the Philippines basketball greatness. In the UAAP Season 81, Paul Desiderio, Bright Akhuetie, Juan Gomez de Liano and the rest of the modern day Fighting Maroons made history by making it back in the Final Four since 1997 and the Finals since 1986. Now, just spectators and UP titos, both Magsanoc and Paras just can't help but feel very proud of the achievement. "Doon palang sa makarating sa Final Four yung manalo pa lang sa La Salle, very happy saka very proud sa nagawa ng mga bata sa kanilang Coach Bo [Perasol], sa lahat ng sakripisyo nila, sa lahat ng mga tumulong, naramdaman mo na nagbunga," said Magsanoc, "It was the realization na they were in the right direction saka natutuwa ako na nabuhay yung pride sa community." "Congratulations to Coach Bo, his coaching staff, his players na nagpakahirap para dito. We're here, we are still here to support in other ways," chipped in Paras. If the two had it their way, they would not want any exposure anymore as the 1986 champions thinking that this year is no longer their time. They said that this is the #16Strong's time. But when ABS-CBN Sports pressed them for some sort of reaction or message regarding this year's splendid run of the Maroons, they tipped their hats off to two entities: the coaching staff and the UP community. "[Hindi na ako nagulat sa dami ng tao.] Expected na yan na once pumasok sa Final Four ang UP, or any other team, pag pumasok yun, talagang buhos lahat ng support and for that team to win again and in the Finals," Paras said. "More than gulat eh natutuwa talaga ako para sa mga players kasi you see people coming together for them. Maski naman noon, mayroon naman talaga na mga loyal fans pero ito kasi it has bridged three decades of different generations eh," Magsanoc added. "The coaching staff has done an outstanding job from the players na tinatawag na 16 Strong, whatever happens here we will be very proud of the Fighting Maroons so nagpapasalamat kami kasi they have put the fight back in the Maroons after a long time," Magsanoc said. Season 81 was a year of rewriting history for the Fighting Maroons - Final Four, Finals, MVP. With that, both UP legends expressed that against Ateneo de Manila University, win or lose, the #16Strong are legends. "Whatever happens in the series, I think they have cemented themselves sa legacy ng school, nung sport, sa UAAP. Job well done for Coach Bo and the Fighting Maroons including the staff," Magsanoc shared. This year proved that UP basketball is no longer just about Magsanoc, Paras, Altamirano, and Guanio. They are now joined by names like Desiderio, Akhuetie, and Gomez de Liano. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @the9cruz.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 4th, 2018

Coach Bo says UAAP Finals Game 1 proved UP can hang with Ateneo

The University of the Philippines’ Cinderella run may very well miss out on the ending it desires. Down 0-1 in the best-of-three Finals to defending champion Ateneo de Manila University, there’s a big chance the Fighting Maroons will have to settle for a runner-up finish in their best season since 1986. However, State U head coach Bo Perasol is still keeping the faith. “Very positive ako. That’s the truth.” Pressed further on the matter, Coach Bo said that despite the Game 1 loss, he and his wards proved they are no pushovers up against the heavily favored Blue Eagles. “Game 1, it gave us yung idea na beatable (yung Ateneo). Before, wala namang nagbigay nang tsansa sa amin e,” he told reporters post-game last Saturday. He then continued, “Dati, parang, ‘Okay, very good, UP,’ pero wala namang nagsasabing tatalunin namin ang Ateneo. Kung meron man, lip service lang yun, pero ito, naramdaman nila na kaya pala.” Indeed, UP kept coming at Ateneo for majority of the match-up, and it took a 14-2 run late in the game for the latter to be able to put away the former. This, even though the Fighting Maroons came into the contest as the biggest underdogs in the Finals in recent history. In fact, majority, if not all, oddsmakers put the Blue Eagles as 10.5-point favorites in Game 1. That is exactly why, somehow, someway, coach Bo believes UP still has a shot at toppling Ateneo. “Before this series, iniisip mo paano tayo mabubugbog dito. Ngayon, ang paniniwala na namin is we can compete with the defending champions if we put our minds into it and we keep doing what we have been doing this season,” he said. After all, they are where they are because they did just that – first, besting De La Salle University in the battle for the third-seed to end the elimination round; second, edging out Adamson University to discard its twice-to-beat advantage in the Final Four; and third, topping the Soaring Falcons again to take a seat in the Finals. “I keep on reminding them that getting into this Finals series is not an accident. They did it themselves,” their mentor said proudly. “Baka isipin nila, mirakulo ito, pero hindi, they did it themselves. It becomes more dangerous na we’re in a knockout game and we need to beat them twice, but I told them, we’ve done this already.” --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 3rd, 2018

Castro cool and calm on the eve of Gilas biggest game in Asian Qualifiers

MANILA, Philippines --- Gilas Pilipinas has a crucial match against Iran coming up but top point guard Jayson Castro is approaching it as just a normal outing. As it stands, the Philippines is currently tied for third place with Japan with identical 5-4 records while Iran is at second with a 6-3 mark. A win by the Philippines forces a tie for second place while a loss could push the national team to fourth and in danger of missing the World Cup altogether. Still, Castro is maintaining a rather relaxed vibe on the eve of Gilas Pilipinas' biggest game in the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers. "Ayoko rin maging excited na excited ako na mawawala ako sa rhythm o mawala ka sa focus. Parang kagaya lang ng dati," he said. "Same lang nung dati. One of the veterans na ako dito sa Gilas, very important game pero parang natural game lang," Castro added. The Iran game marks Castro's return to Gilas Pilipinas after serving a three-game suspension from FIBA. If there's one thing to get excited about for Castro, it's the fact that he gets to play for the Philippines again. "Excited ako ulit makalaro para sa national team, makapag-provide ng leadership as one of the veterans," he said. "Yung past naging lesson sakin yun," Castro added. The Blur's presence certainly gives Gilas a boost especially after the national team just absorbed a shock upset at the hands of Kazakhstan Friday. With the Iranians coming to town, it's imperative for the national team not to let its guard down and take advantage of this second golden opportunity. "This time yung focus namin against Iran, after nung game sa Kazakhstan, sinabi ni coach Yeng na we still have a chance para maging number 2, as long as na matalo natin yung Iran," Castro said. "Marami rin kaming lesson na nakuha sa Kazakhstan and sana ma-apply namin yung mga yun against Iran," he added.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 2nd, 2018

Shock loss to Taipei in 2013 gives Gilas Pilipinas hope for recovery

MANILA, Philippines --- Gilas Pilipinas suffering a shocking upset at the MOA Arena actually has a precedent. Five years ago in the 2013 FIBA-Asia Championships, the Philippines missed out on a Group A sweep after taking a five-point loss to Chinese-Taipei in an emotionally-charged game. The Filipinos had a history of winning against Taipei but on that fateful night in August of 2013, Gilas Pilipinas took a rather disappointing loss. Still, the Philippines would recover and actually win five straight games to qualify for the 2014 FIBA World Cup. On Friday, the Philippines took another shocking upset at the MOA Arena, this time against Kazakhstan. Gilas' four-point loss has put a damper on the country's road to the FIBA World Cup in China next year. And much like the Taipei loss five years ago, key figures in the national team hope that Kazakhstan loss becomes a turning point. "Katulad ng sinabi ni Gabe [Norwood] kanina, last time na may painful loss national team natin dito [MOA Arena] was against Taipei [in FIBA-Asia 2013]," guard LA Tenorio said. "After that what happened? It became our wake-up call, mas naging focused kami and we made it to the World Cup. It might be the same situation [now]," he added. Tenorio was part of the 2013 Gilas team that won silver in the Asian Championships. He was also part of the 2014 team that competed in the World Cup. LA is actually only making his return to the national team now four years later and he's hoping that Gilas realizes that one painful loss doesn't define the race to the World Cup. The Philippines didn't exactly lose ground in these Asian Qualifiers but the team's margin for error just got slimmer. Gilas can make a play for a top two spot in a couple of days actually, all they have to do to beat Iran in its final home game. "Yun lang, we cannot afford [to lose]. Yung margin of error namin is lumiliit. But we still have a chance," Tenorio said. "We can win at least 2 of 3 [of our last games] para World Cup ulit. We focus first on Monday then we'll see what's gonna happen sa next window," he added.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 1st, 2018

UAAP Finals: Bo Perasol has a message for his critics from Ateneo

On Saturday, Bo Perasol will be in the position to prove himself further to the University of the Philippines community during the UAAP Season 81 best-of-three Finals series. As a sidelight, he will also have every chance to redeem himself against  Ateneo de Manila University, which happens to be his former employer for three years. Before he became the head tactician of the Finals-bound Maroons, he was the head coach of the Kiefer Ravena-headlined Ateneo from Seasons 76 to 78. But those three years were not as fruitful as every Atenean wanted it to be. Either they completely missed qualifying for the Final Four or fell mercilessly short of a Finals ticket. He inherited an Ateneo team that was fresh from five consecutive championships under Norman Black's tutelage and the great Blue Eagle Ravena was in his prime years. The pressure to deliver was so heavy that when those campaigns failed, Perasol earned a lot of critics who second-guessed his decision-making. Months after leaving Ateneo, he signed up with his alma mater to mentor the Fighting Maroons. It was a gradual build-up starting with a sixth place finish in Season 79, a fifth place finish in Season 80, to this year's Finals berth. His perseverance with the former cellar dwellers is finally coming to fruition. The plot just thickens given the fact that it will be against his former team Ateneo. But Perasol wants to make things clear, this is not personal business. "What I have with Ateneo is just, in fact, gratefulness. I'm very thankful to them for giving me the chance, for believing in me. If they did not believe, I mean the people who managed the team, if they did not believe in me hundred percent, I wouldn't be there for two more years. First year palang natanggal na ako dun," said the current UP mentor. "Naniniwala ako na walang animosity in my heart when I go up against these people," he added. Days leading up to the Battle of Katipunan, there have been a lot of friendly banter on social media regarding the very interesting David and Goliath match-up. One memorable meme that came from the back-and-forth of the fans was a sarcastic one that goes along the lines of "Sa wakas, mabibigyan na ni Bo ang Ateneo ng championship. #OBF" Reporters have mentioned the meme to the amiable UP tactician and said he isn’t affected. "Okay lang yun. Again, we cannot control the minds of other people. If I'm going to entertain those thoughts, I wouldn't be here. I wouldn't have had the patience or the courage to go on kapag ako apektado lagi sa mga ganun," he said. He leaves it up to the equally witty UP community to come up with some other clever reply. "Ang dami ring patawa ng mga taga UP against Ateneo. That should be the case, kaya nga naging entertaining itong basketball na ito and we're just parang nagiging pawns lang tayo dito and at the end of this we are still going to play 40 minutes of basketball, nothing personal about that," Perasol added who is also celebrating his 47th birthday on the eve of Game 1. The Finals series between UP and Ateneo would be the perfect stage for Perasol's redemption but this is not about him. Being the heavy underdogs in this series, Perasol goes back to the rhetoric that this will always be for and about the UP community. "They say that being an underdog will limit the expectations but I don't think the expectations of the UP community are quite limited right now. They would want to go all the way even if they know that we are the overwhelming underdogs," he said. "It also says how hungry we are and it's just a matter of thinking that regardless of the odds, you still have to fight through the game," he added. All UAAP fans will have the best-of-three Battle of Katipunan series to find out whether Perasol's redemption storyline will come full circle by the end of the season or not. The games will start on Saturday, December 1 at the Mall of Asia Arena. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @the9cruz.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 30th, 2018

Senators warn against recall of fuel tax hike suspension in 2019

Some senators rejected Friday the plan of President Rodrigo Duterte's economic managers to proceed with the second tranche of oil excise tax hike set on January 2019 as mandated under the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) law.   Senator Sonny Angara, chair of the Senate ways and means panel, argued that the effects of the recent drop in global oil prices and the seven consecutive weeks of fuel price rollbacks were still not being felt by ordinary Filipinos.   "(T)hese oil price reductions have to be felt by Filipinos. Hindi po dito dapat nagtatapos ang rollback. Dapat sundan din ito ng rollback sa presyo ng mga pangunahing bilihin. Dapat lang na guma...Keep on reading: Senators warn against recall of fuel tax hike suspension in 2019.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsNov 30th, 2018

UAAP: Adamson s future is still secure with rising point guard Jerom Lastimosa

Adamson University's Jerom Lastimosa closed his first playing year in the UAAP with tons of emotion. The Soaring Falcons found themselves getting booted out in the semifinals for the third straight year. Lastimosa could have been the Falcons' hero after making the game-tying triple with 2.6 left in regulation. It was Lastimosa's shot that forced an extra five minutes to decide who will advance to the Finals to take on defending champions Ateneo. "Pagkashoot ko ng three points sa gilid po, yung mindset ko is sa amin talaga ibibigay ni Lord," he said. Come the overtime, Lastimosa gifted Adamson a six-point cushion after sinking another triple with 2:39 left in the additional period. He displayed poise and control during the crucial moments of the match. But in the end, the Maroons gobbled up the lead as Adamson failed to find a reply. "Pero hindi pala [ito] sa amin. So sad," he said. Lastimosa was heartbroken after failing to overcome Adamson's Final Four curse. For three straight years in the Franz Pumaren era, they have always made it to the Final Four only to settle for third place. Lastimosa was seen bawling beside graduating senior Sean Manganti during the singing of the Adamson University Hymn.  "Yung pinakita lang namin na laban kanina, actually, magandang laban pero talaga eh talo pa rin, nagkulang kami sa -- hindi abot sa five minutes po," said the recruit from Dumaguete while holding back tears. To focus on the silver lining of the heartbreak, Adamson will still have the services of the 5-foot-10 point guard for at least two more years. "Pagbutihan ko lang sa loob ng [playing years ko]. Mamatured ko pa rin yung mga laro namin pa. Iaangat ko pa para mas maganda yung laro," he said. In just his first year as Adamson's point guard, he posted averages of 7.8 points, 3.2 rebounds, and 2.8 assists. His rise is a manifestation of the program that Adamson head coach Franz Pumaren has always been proud of. From a little known point guard from Asian College in Dumaguete, Lastimosa is now building his name as a reliable point guard in the UAAP. "Whoever heard of Jerom Lastimosa? I don’t think even a single dot in the radar, he was noticed," said the Adamson mentor. "I think he’s gonna be valuable, his name is gonna be mentioned and will always be in the conversation. He had some mental mistakes but that’s part of being a [20]-year old kid out of the province. I don’t think he even imagined himself playing in this situation and earning some big minutes," Pumaren added referring to Lastimosa's 20.7 minutes per game. As manifestation of the trust bestowed upon the young player, he was tasked to make the last shot of the season with 6.6 left but it clanked off to the side of the rim. No worries for the Adamson faithful however, as Lastimosa has still more years to perfect the shot. For him, he is just very thankful for the UAAP experience he has been having so far. From getting his minutes to playing in front of an Araneta Coliseum brimming with nearly 21,000 fans, "Actually, yung paglipat ko dito is hindi ko talaga ine-expect na maco-contain ko yung laro ko galing sa Dumaguete [papuntang UAAP]," said the Adamsonian. "Syempre rookie ako, first time ko dito sa UAAP tapos ganun yung crowd kadami saka sobrang blessed ko rin kasi first time ko yun maglaro sa UAAP na sobrang daming tao tsaka nagpapasalamat kami sa crowd namin," Lastimosa said. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @the9cruz.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 28th, 2018

ONE Championship: The Machine to Master Mentor - Team Lakay s Mark Sangiao has no regrets in exchanging fighting for coaching

During the post-fight press conference for ONE: Conquest of Champions last Friday, Novemeber 23rd at the Mall of Asia Arena in Manila, Team Lakay head coach Mark Sangiao was asked a pretty interesting question.  "Coach, you sacrificed your professional fighting career para makapag-focus sa mga katulad ni Eduard [Folayang]. Ngayon na nakikita niyo yung mga world title na nasa lamesa. Do you think worth it yung pag-give up [ng fighting career?]"  Sangiao had just coached one of his closest wards in Eduard Folayang back to the ONE Lightweight World Championship. Before that, Sangiao spent much of his 2018 coaching three other Team Lakay stars in Geje Eustaquio, Joshua Pacio, and Kevin Belingon into their own world championship runs.  All four of the champions were present during the press conference, and their big gold belts provided enough gleam to light up the whole press room.  So for Sangiao, his response was quick and simple, and likely very easy.   "Nakikita ko lang yung mga belt dito, worth it na. Feeling ko champion na din ako," he said with a gigantic smile, as the four ONE Championship world titles sat in front of him.  Prior to becoming Team Lakay's master mentor and a Coach of the Year awardee, Mark "The Machine" Sangiao was one hell of a fighter.  A former Philippine Team member and medalist in Wushu, Sangiao transitioned into MMA and was one of the stars of the early days of the URCC.  The Baguio native went 7-2 in his career, with all but one of his victories coming via stoppage. His last fight was in 2009, and it was around that time that other Team Lakay stars like Eduard Folayang, Kevin Belingon, and Honorio Banario were getting their own careers off the ground.  The decision to leave the fight game as a competitor and put his attention to coaching full time, Sangiao says, was made in 2010, and it was in the presence of his Team Lakay wards.  "Napag-desisyunan ko ‘to, eight years ago, 2010. And they were there nung nagdesisyon ako, tinatanong ko din sila. ‘Desisyon mo ‘yan’, yun yung sabi nila."  Now, eight years later, Sangiao has coached six world champions and has helped transform Team Lakay into one of, if not the best mixed martial arts teams in all of Asia.  This success, the 38-year old Sangiao adds, has made his sacrifice even more worth while.  "Positive naman akong tao, walang pinag-sisisihan, and I’m very happy with the result of my decision." With four of ONE Championship's eleven MMA world championships residing in Team Lakay, it's not really surprising that Coach Mark is at peace with his decision. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 26th, 2018