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Espejo tows Nat’l squad back in win column

Wih Marck Espejo back, Rebisco-Philippines made quick work of the Philippine Army Troopers, 25-12, 25-20, 25-8, in the 2019 Spikers’ Turf Reinforced Conference at the Paco Arena in Manila on Thursday. Espejo led the Philippines’ balanced attack with 13 points while Mark Alfafara added 10 to up Rebisco’s standing to 4-1. After cruising through the first two sets, Team Philippines proved to be too much for Army. Up by 16 points in the third frame, Espejo put an emphatic end to the match with a powerful kill. “Nag-rotate lang talaga kami sa ilang tao eh, kumbaga kasi ‘yung iba naglaro kanina, tapos may problema ‘yung ibang player kaya nag rotate lang kami sa i-ilang tao kaya siguro mas maganda ‘yung laro,” said assistant coach Dong Dela Cruz, who was sitting in for Dante Alinsunurin as he is in Japan. The 3-2 Troopers were led by Pj Rojas with seven markers. Meanwhile, defending champion Philippine Air Force-Go for Gold added more woes to winless AFP Olympics rival Philippine Coast Guard Dolphins,  25-15, 24-26, 25-18, 25-19. Ranran Abdilla scored 24 points built on 18 attacks, five aces, and a block while Kim Malabunga added 15 points on 11 attacks, three blocks and an ace for the 4-1 Air Force. Esmail Kasim had 21 points for the Coast Guard who fell to 0-5 in the tournament. In the first game, the IEM Phoenix Volley Masters scored an upset, come-from-behind victory against the Animo Green Spikers, 17-25, 22-25, 25-20, 25-18, 15-10, for their breakthrough win in the tournament. Former San Beda star Mark Enciso fired 19 points for IEM while Razzel Palisoc chipped in 18. Animo, who fell to a 3-2 card, was led by Green Archer Cris Dumago with 14 points while Joshua De Sequera added 11 points.  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 6th, 2019

Thomas will take his 59, and a trophy would be a bonus

div>DOUG FERGUSON, AP Golf Writer /div> div>  /div> div>HONOLULU (AP) — Two islands, two big moments to celebrate, and Justin Thomas had to think about which meant more to him. /div> div>  /div> div>He won at Kapalua, but that won't put him in the record book. Winning a PGA Tour event happens 47 weeks out of the year. /div> div>  /div> div>And then on Thursday in the Sony Open, he made a 15-foot eagle putt on the final hole to shoot 59 . That gets him in the record book with the eighth sub-60 round in PGA Tour history. But he still hasn't won the tournament. /div> div>  /div> div>That won't be decided for three more rounds, and history is not necessarily on his side. Of the previous seven sub-60 rounds, only three players wound up winning — Al Geiberger at the Memphis Classic in 1977, David Duval at the Bob Hope Classic in 1999 and Stuart Appleby at the Greenbrier Classic in 2010. Duval and Appleby each shot 59 in the final round. /div> div>  /div> div>So which was the greater feat? Which brought more satisfaction? Winning a tournament or shooting 59? /div> div>  /div> div>'On paper, it would be today,' Thomas said. 'I have a chance to win a golf tournament every week. I don't have many chances to shoot 59.' /div> div>  /div> div>Oddly enough, only when he thought he had a chance did he start thinking he was out of chances at Waialae Country Club. /div> div>  /div> div>Golf's magic number — even though Jim Furyk holds the record with a 58 , any score that starts with 'fifty' is still magic — first crossed his mind when he two-putted for birdie on the par-5 18th to make the turn in 29. /div> div>  /div> div>'As well as I was driving it, I can go shoot 6 or 7 (under) on this side and really, really post history,' he said. /div> div>  /div> div>He birdied the next two holes. On the par-3 fourth, he hit 7-iron to 5 feet for birdie. He was 9 under through 13. And then he started to think that maybe this wasn't going to be his day. Thomas missed a 10-foot birdie chance on No. 5 and still doesn't know how his 30-foot birdie attempt on the No. 7 didn't go in. /div> div>  /div> div>Spieth and Daniel Berger — all of them were born in 1993 and graduated high school in 2011 — were as much into this pursuit as Thomas, if not more. Spieth wrapped his hands around the back of his neck when Thomas didn't make the putt on No. 7. /div> div>  /div> div>'When those didn't go in, I was kind of saying to myself, 'Maybe this isn't meant to be.' I thought some of the things that happened earlier in the day, I was kind of curious if I was going to post a number or if it was just an unbelievable round,' Thomas said. /div> div>  /div> div>He made eight birdies and two eagles. Equally important — maybe even the key shot for him — was a 10-foot par save on the eighth hole. That kept him at 9 under going to the par-5 ninth, his final hole which is 506 yards and easily reachable with a good drive. /div> div>  /div> div>He thought he hit a good drive. It wasn't easy. Instead of clearing a fairway bunker down the left side, Thomas saw it hit top of the bunker. /div> div>  /div> div>'I saw some sand flying and I was ready to punch something,' Thomas said. 'I was pretty upset about that, because I felt like all chances right there were gone.' /div> div>  /div> div>That's when Berger saved the day. /div> div>  /div> div>Berger, who beat out Thomas for PGA Tour rookie of the year in 2015, also was in the bunker. Thomas already was planning to hit wedge out of the sand and take his chances from the fairway. At worst, he shoots 60 or 61. /div> div>  /div> div>But then Berger hit a 4-iron out of the bunker and onto the green. Thomas asked for a 5-iron. /div> div>  /div> div>'This isn't a time for me to lay it up,' he said. /div> div>  /div> div>From 207 yards, with as good a shot as he has hit, Thomas cleared the lip and hit it to 15 feet. Berger was just outside of him, so he got a good read — the putt broke to the right — and he poured it in. /div> div>  /div> div>Thomas joined Duval as the only players to break 60 with an eagle on the last hole. He joined Furyk as the only players to break 60 with a bogey. /div> div>  /div> div>He just wasn't sure what to make of it. This wasn't the stoic Duval fist-pumping his way around the green. Thomas held both arms to the side, and he punched the air with his right fist only after seeing Spieth and Berger celebrating far more than he was. /div> div>  /div> div>'I think I got more excited from seeing them get excited than I did my putt going in,' Thomas said. 'I thought about it going up to the green. I'm like, 'If I make it, what am I going to do?' It's not like winning a tournament. You have three days left to try to play well. So I didn't really know how to react. I never had a putt on the last hole on a Thursday mean that much.' /div> div>  /div> div>And that's where he was on Friday. Back to work. His name is in the record book, but not yet the trophy. /div> div>  /div> div>The only other player to shoot 59 in the opening round was Paul Goydos at the John Deere Classic in 2010. He was runner-up to Steve Stricker, who opened with a 60. /div> div>  /div> div>Thomas only had a three-shot lead over Hudson Swafford when the day ended. /div> div>  /div> div>No matter. It's already a great week. /div> div>  /div>.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 14th, 2017

Fresh off a victory, Justin Thomas joins the 59 club

DOUG FERGUSON, AP Golf Writer   HONOLULU (AP) — Staring over the top of a bunker on his final hole, the prudent play for Justin Thomas might have been to make sure he got out of the sand and avoided a big number. But then, Thomas didn't care about a big number. It was about golf's magic number. 'This isn't a time for me to lay it up,' Thomas said Thursday at the Sony Open. He hit a 5-iron so clean and so high that it carried 207 yards into a light Pacific breeze to 15 feet on the par-5 ninth hole at Waialae Country Club. Thomas poured in the eagle putt for an 11-under 59, becoming the seventh player to post a sub-60 round in PGA Tour history. For a brief moment, he reacted as if it were little more than the perfect finish to a great opening round. He stretched out his putter that was still in his left hand, smiled and punched the air with his right fist. Only when he looked over at Jordan Spieth and Daniel Berger, the two witnesses to a 59 that Thomas made look easy, did the sense of history start to hit him. Berger thrust his arm in the air. Spieth, his best friend in golf since they were 13, crouched as the ball neared the cup and delivered a left-handed fist pump as both raced over to congratulate him. 'I think I got more excited from seeing them get excited than I did my putt going in,' Thomas said. 'I thought about it going up to the green. I'm like, 'If I make it, what am I going to do?' It's not like winning a tournament. You have three days left to try to play well. So I didn't really know how to react. I never had a putt on the last hole on a Thursday mean that much.' It was different from the feeling he had four days ago when he won the SBS Tournament of Champions at Kapalua. That was his third victory on the PGA Tour, and the 23-year-old Thomas is sure to win more. 'I don't have many chances to shoot 59,' he said. Jim Furyk was the last player with a sub-60 round when he closed with a record 58 at the Travelers Championship last summer. Furyk also had a 59 in 2013 at the BMW Championship, joining the exclusive group that includes Al Geiberger (1977 Memphis Classic), Chip Beck (1991 Las Vegas Invitational), David Duval (1999 Bob Hope Classic), Paul Goydos (2010 John Deere Classic) and Stuart Appleby (2010 Greenbrier Classic). This was special because he made it look so easy. He began by pitching in for eagle from 35 yards. Thomas never hit more than a 7-iron into the par 4s at Waialae on a perfect day for scoring — very little breeze, fast fairways and soft greens. That 7-iron was chipped under the trees and into a bunker on No. 8 when he was trying to save par. His only bogey came on his second hole, the par-3 11th, when his tee shot went into a bunker and he missed an 18-foot par putt. Duval was the only other player to shoot 59 with an eagle on the last hole. Furyk at Conway Farms is the only other player to shoot 59 with a bogey. Spieth was more nervous than Thomas and far more demonstrative. Thomas had a 30-foot birdie putt on No. 7 that looked good even when it was inches from the cup until burning the edge. Spieth clutched the back of his neck and was still asking how the putt didn't fall when he walked onto the next tee. He was talking to himself, of course. He gave Thomas his space. 'It's like sitting on the bench with a teammate throwing a perfect game,' Spieth said. 'It was awesome. What an awesome last five rounds he's had.' Thomas first thought about a 59 when he found an extra long tee at the par-5 18th and figured that was an omen for him to tee it high and hammer a high draw, which left him only an 8-iron into the green. He narrowly missed his eagle putt and settled for a 29. The way he was playing, he expected to go lower, and he did. 'When I was on 18, I thought about 59. I don't know if that's a good or a bad thing, but I just knew that I was driving it well,' he said. 'And if you drive it well out there, you can make a lot of birdies.' He followed with three birdies in four holes, and two years at Alabama was enough for him to start doing the math. 'He had full control of his golf swing,' Spieth said. Spieth and Berger were along for the ride. They all graduated high school in 2011 and grew up in junior golf. They were together a few weekends ago at a resort in Maui ahead of the Tournament of Champions. And they put on quite a show, with Spieth and Berger each shooting 65. On only three holes — No. 15, 5 and 8 — did someone in the group not make birdie or better. Their best-ball score was 17 under. Thomas started to think a 59 wasn't in the works when he was fooled on a 10-foot birdie chance on No. 5 and the putt on No. 7 somehow stayed out. He kept his hopes alive with a 10-foot par save on No. 8, knowing he could get home in two on the par-5 ninth hole. And then he hit into a bunker. 'I saw some sand flying and I was ready to punch something,' Thomas said. 'I was pretty upset about that, because I felt like all chances right there gone.' But then he saw Berger hit out of the bunker with a 4-iron, and Thomas took 5-iron and 'absolutely flushed it.' One putt later, he posted the eighth sub-60 score in history, and became the youngest to shoot 59. Thomas planned to go to the North Shore in the afternoon. Even watching from the beach, he can appreciate the feeling of catching a big wave. He's on one right now. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 13th, 2017

DLSU upsets NU in four sets

De La Salle scored a major upset Monday when the Green Spikers upended erstwhile undefeated National University, 26-24, 25-19, 18-25, 25-22, to get back on the winning track in the 2nd Spikers’ Turf Collegiate Conference at the PhilSports Arena in.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 15th, 2016

Bulldogs, Maroons score contrasting victories to share group lead

National University and University of the Philippines scored contrasting victories Monday to share the lead in their respective groups in the preliminary round of the 2nd Spikers’ Turf Collegiate Conference at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig City. /.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 8th, 2016

Spieth back to playing some good golf at British Open

By Chris Lehourites, Associated Press PORTRUSH, Northern Ireland (AP) — Jordan Spieth knows he can win the big ones. Perhaps that's why he saves his best golf for them. The three-time major winner, still only 25, moved his name up the leaderboard at the British Open on Friday with a superb four-hole run near the end of the front nine. He birdied the fifth and sixth, made eagle on the seventh and birdie on the eighth to take him to 6 under, briefly tied for the lead. He ended up with a 4-under 67 at Royal Portrush to bring him to 5-under 137 on a mild morning on the Dunluce Links. "I always get pumped up for major championships," Spieth said. "Clearly I try to peak for majors. And then this style of golf I always — I've always found to fit my game pretty well." That game really started to shine in 2015 when Spieth won the Masters and U.S. Open. He then finished a stroke out of a playoff in the British Open at St. Andrews. He capped his major season with a second-place finish at the PGA Championship. In 2017, he won the British Open, finishing three strokes ahead of Matt Kuchar at Royal Birkdale. That was his last victory. Spieth had an up-and-down day in the first round this year, but with the improved weather on Day 2 came a better score. "I putted a bit better. Different wind change so certain holes played harder than others and others became easier," said Spieth, who finished his round about an hour before the rain started to fall. "I felt like I played the easy holes well and then I avoided the pot bunkers today more than I did yesterday. But I certainly found the rough more today than I did yesterday. "At some point I hope to be playing off the short grass this week." Although he failed to improve his score late in the round, he did manage to make par on some of the toughest holes on the course. The par-3 16th and par-4 18th are rated as two of the hardest. Spieth landed his tee shot just right of the green on 16, chipped up the sharp slope and nailed a short putt for par. On the 18th, he drove down the middle of the fairway, one of the few he hit Friday, put his approach on the green and just missed his birdie putt. "I'm in contention," Spieth said. "I feel like if I can continue to improve each day, hit the ball better tomorrow than I did today, and better on Sunday than Saturday, then I should have a chance with how I'd feel on and around the greens.".....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 20th, 2019

Blaze Spikers escape HD Spikers in five

Sisi Rondina came up big to power Petron to a come-from-behind 17-25, 21-25, 25-11, 25-17, 15-10 win over Cignal in the 2019 Philippine Superliga All-Filipino Conference Thursday at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan. After missing their previous game against Generika-Ayala, Rondina went full blast as she lit the scoreboard with 23 kills, two blocks and ace off the bench to lift Petron to its eighth win in nine games. Remy Palma chipped in 12 points while Bernadeth Pons put up 10 markers and 22 digs as the Blaze Spikers avoided the upset ax of the HD Spikers after losing the first two sets. Petron stepped on the gas late in the fifth set for a 13-9 lead before Rondina delivered back-to-back hits to finish off the HD Spikers. Mylene Paat and Jovelyn Gonzaga tallied 17 points apiece while Rachel Anne Daquis had 12 markers for Cignal, which fell to 3-5 win-loss card. Meanwhile, F2 Logistics brushed off a rusty start before catching fire in the second set to massacre Sta. Lucia Realty, 25-22, 25-3, 25-12. With Kalei Mau anchoring the offense, the Cargo Movers turned a 10-19 deficit in the first set into a rout to remain flawless in eight games. Mau finished with 13 points while Ara Galang had 11 points and 15 digs and Majoy Baron asserted her might at the defensive end with five blocks for nine markers for the Cargo Movers. Dawn Macandili was also instrumental with 24 digs and seven excellent receptions for F2 Logistics, which committed only four errors in the entire ballgame. After trailing by nine, 10-19, F2 Logistics stepped on the gas and captured the first set at 25-22. Then, it was all Cargo Movers from there as they destroyed the sluggish Lady Realtors on both ends to finish the second set with 25-3 count – the biggest margin ever tallied in the six-year history of this tourney. Sta. Lucia’s three points in the second set came from an ace by Andrea Marzan, a successful challenge by head coach Babes Castillo and an attack from skipper Pam Lastimosa. Andrea Marzan and Roselle Baliton came through with eight and seven points, respectively,  for the Lady Realtors, whose lone win in nine matches came from rookie team Marinerang Pilipina.  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 18th, 2019

MPBL: Terrific Tayongtong leads QC to home win over Makati

Joco Tayongtong scored 13 of his 20 points in the final quarter as the Quezon City Capitals - WEMSAP roared back in the endgame to stun Makati Super Crunch 91-85 in Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball Lakan Cup action on Tuesday at the Ateneo Blue Eagle Gym. "Ang nasa isip ko lang ay manalo sa home court namin," said the former JRU Heavy Bomber after the game. Makati looked in command from the second quarter up until midway through the fourth after three straight JJ Manlangit baskets put them up by a dozen, 82-70. And then Joco Tayongtong happened. Tayongtong went berserk, leading an 11-0 run bouyed by a noisy crowd at the Blue Eagle Gym. Juneric Baloria's two free throws stopped the rot briefly for Makati, but Tayongtong went back to work with a three ball that keyed a 10-1 run to finish the game. Makati failed to score a field goal in the last five minutes of the contest to lose for the first time in five outings as only defending champion San Juan remains unbeaten in the Lakan Cup while QC improves to 3-2. Jeckster Apinan top scored for Cholo Villanueva's team with 21 points in a losing effort. The game brought back memories of the two teams' playoff series earlier this year in the Datu Cup, when seventh-seeded QC upset second-seeded Makati, sweeping them in two games. In the second game, Davao Occidental Cocolife upped their standing to 4-1 with a comfortable 86-55 romp over Rizal Golden Coolers Xentro Mall. Leading 36-31 at the half, the Tigers exploded with 27 points in the third quarter against only eight from Rizal to put a once-competitive game out of reach. Billy Robles, James Forrester and Mark Yee led the way with a barrage of points against a hapless Rizal defense. Yee claimed his 14th player of the game award with 21 points and 12 boards for a league-record 23rd MPBL double-double. Robles chipped in 15 for Davao. Only one player from Xentro Mall, Achie Iñigo, got into double figures with ten points. The Golden Coolers drop to 1-3. In the first match the Muntinlupa Cagers Angelis Resort won the Battle of BF Homes, defeating neighbors the Parañaque Patriots Yabo Sports 85-78. GJ Ylagan had a mammoth game with 22 points, including 6 out of 10 from three- point range, none bigger than a trey with 70 seconds to go in the game that gave Angelis Resort a 78-72 cushion. Matching Ylagan in scoring 22 was point guard Ryusei Koga, who skillfully outfoxed the Patriot pressing defense all day long with his ball-handling and passing. Completing the Munti big three was John Kevin Ortuoste, who poured in 19 markers. Parañaque shot a paltry 30.4 percent from the field, led by Vinny Begaso's 18 markers. Muntinlupa won despite seeing head coach Richie Melencio get tossed with 1:26 left in the game for a second technical after complaining about the officiating all game long. The Cagers climb to 2-4 in the standings with a second straight win. The Patriots are also now at 2-4......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 17th, 2019

NCAA 95: Jr. Altas announce arrival anew at expense of Jr. Blazers

STANDINGS Perpetual 2-0 San Beda 2-0 LPU 2-0 JRU 2-1 Arellano 1-1 San Sebastian 1-1 CSB-LSGH 1-1 EAC 0-2 Mapua 0-2 Letran 0-3 University of Perpetual Help has now downed Mapua High School and College of St. Benilde-La Salle Green Hills - the defending champion and runner-up, respectively, in the NCAA 95 Juniors Basketball Tournament. The Jr. Altas kept up their impressive start to the season by dropping a 22-point hammer on the Jr. Blazers, Tuesday at Filoil Flying V Centre. Emman Galman showed the way with 23 points to go along with five rebounds and two assists. “Si Emman? Superman,” a beaming head coach Myk Saguiguit said post-game. He definitely wasn’t alone, however, as Angelo Galsano also added 13 points while Shawn Orgo stuffed the stat sheet with seven markers, six assists, and five rebounds Perps took control right from tip-off and dominated the first half by a score if 34-16. The contest would never be close the rest of the way. This, a week after already having sent a statement to defending champion Mapua. “This is another morale-boosting win for us. Una, tinalo namin Mapua, defending champion tas ngayon yung runner-up naman,” coach Myk said. He then continued, “Napakalaking bagay nito kasi napatunayan na nila sa sarili nilang kaya nila.” At 2-0, Perpetual stands on level ground with San Beda High School and Lyceum of the Philippines University, but their back-to-back wins are the most impressive thus far by virtue of having come at the expense of last season’s top two teams. On the other hand, CSB-LSGH suffered a setback following a season-opening win. BOX SCORES PERPETUAL 81 -- Galman 23, Gelsano 13, Orgo 7, Escalante 7, Galoy 6, Cuevas 6, Balazuela 6, Manuel 4, Nunez 3, Dela Cruz 2, Angeles 2, Banaticla 2, Kawamura 0, Berwite 0, Ignacio 0. CSB-LSGH 59 -- Calimag 17, Quiambao 12, Arguelles 6, Palencia 5, Macalalag 4, Valenzuela 4, Manansala 4, Panlilio 3, Estil 2, Dimaunahan 1, Torrijos 1, Rivera 0, Gagate 0, Reyes 0. QUARTER SCORES: 11-6, 34-16, 58-41, 81-59. —— Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 16th, 2019

PetroGazz, Creamline go head to head in PVL Reinforced Conference Finals LIVE on ABS-CBN S+A and iWant

It’s Creamline versus PetroGazz for the Premier Volleyball League (PVL) Reinforced Conference crown starting Wednesday (July 10) at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. Fans can catch the live coverage of ABS-CBN Sports on S+A, S+A HD, LIGA, LIGA HD, and via streaming on iWant starting at 3 pm.   The reigning and defending Reinforced Conference champs Cool Smashers formalized the dream match-up by fans when they swept the PacificTown Army Lady Troopers last Saturday (July 6). The Angels booked their maiden appearance on the Finals stage by defeating the BanKo Perlas Spikers also in two games, and are now seeking to dethrone the current queens. The Lady Troopers and the Perlas Spikers, meanwhile, will dispute the bronze medal at 3 pm, with the Game 1 of the Finals starting at 5 pm.   The underlying story between the two rival squads was how they were the only ones to beat each other dating back to the elimination rounds. PetroGazz drew first first blood against Creamline in the season opener, giving the Cool Smashers their only loss in the conference. After that opening-day defeat, the defending champs racked up 11 straight victories, including the semifinal series against the Lady Troopers, to barge into the Finals.   “What hurts Creamline opponents the most right now is that their reinforcements have been playing so well. (Kuttika) Kaewpin and (Ale) Blanco have been scoring a lot and they still have Alyssa Valdez, Jema Galanza, there’s just so much firepower,” shared volleyball analyst Mozzy Ravena on “The Score” last Friday (July 5) when asked about how Creamline has sustained its blazing form.   Meanwhile, fellow analyst Fille Cainglet-Cayetano cited that aside from the Cool Smashers’ offense, the team’s defense has been stout thanks to the likes of Liberos Melissa Gohing and Kyla Atienza. On the other side of the fence, the analysts believe that the Angels gained the upperhand thanks to the combined firepower of the troika of Wilma Salas, Janisa Johnson, and to their surprise, Cherry Nunag. “Every game, the imports have been consistent, then there’s that one local who bolsters their attack,” said Ravena. Aside from the three, the Angels can also rely on tried and tested veterans with championship experience like Stephanie Mercado and Jeanette Panaga.   Don’t miss the opening game of the PVL Reinforced Conference Finals series featuring the defending champs Creamline Cool Smashers against the PetroGazz Angels against the BanKo Perlas Spikers this Wednesday (July 10) from the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. All games will be aired LIVE on S+A, S+A HD, LIGA, LIGA HD, and iWant starting at 3 pm with the Battle for Third between PacificTown Army and BanKo Perlas.   For more stories and news on the PVL, follow @ABSCBNSports on Twitter and Facebook or visit sports.abs-cbn.com. For updates, follow @ABSCBNPR on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram or visit www.abs-cbn.com/newsroom......»»

Category: lifestyleSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 9th, 2019

PetroGazz, Creamline go head to head in PVL Reinforced Conference Finals LIVE on ABS-CBN S+A and iWant

It’s Creamline versus PetroGazz for the Premier Volleyball League (PVL) Reinforced Conference crown starting Wednesday (July 10) at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. Fans can catch the live coverage of ABS-CBN Sports on S+A, S+A HD, LIGA, LIGA HD, and via streaming on iWant starting at 3 pm.   The reigning and defending Reinforced Conference champs Cool Smashers formalized the dream match-up by fans when they swept the PacificTown Army Lady Troopers last Saturday (July 6). The Angels booked their maiden appearance on the Finals stage by defeating the BanKo Perlas Spikers also in two games, and are now seeking to dethrone the current queens. The Lady Troopers and the Perlas Spikers, meanwhile, will dispute the bronze medal at 3 pm, with the Game 1 of the Finals starting at 5 pm.   The underlying story between the two rival squads was how they were the only ones to beat each other dating back to the elimination rounds. PetroGazz drew first first blood against Creamline in the season opener, giving the Cool Smashers their only loss in the conference. After that opening-day defeat, the defending champs racked up 11 straight victories, including the semifinal series against the Lady Troopers, to barge into the Finals.   “What hurts Creamline opponents the most right now is that their reinforcements have been playing so well. (Kuttika) Kaewpin and (Ale) Blanco have been scoring a lot and they still have Alyssa Valdez, Jema Galanza, there’s just so much firepower,” shared volleyball analyst Mozzy Ravena on “The Score” last Friday (July 5) when asked about how Creamline has sustained its blazing form.   Meanwhile, fellow analyst Fille Cainglet-Cayetano cited that aside from the Cool Smashers’ offense, the team’s defense has been stout thanks to the likes of Liberos Melissa Gohing and Kyla Atienza. On the other side of the fence, the analysts believe that the Angels gained the upperhand thanks to the combined firepower of the troika of Wilma Salas, Janisa Johnson, and to their surprise, Cherry Nunag. “Every game, the imports have been consistent, then there’s that one local who bolsters their attack,” said Ravena. Aside from the three, the Angels can also rely on tried and tested veterans with championship experience like Stephanie Mercado and Jeanette Panaga.   Don’t miss the opening game of the PVL Reinforced Conference Finals series featuring the defending champs Creamline Cool Smashers against the PetroGazz Angels against the BanKo Perlas Spikers this Wednesday (July 10) from the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. All games will be aired LIVE on S+A, S+A HD, LIGA, LIGA HD, and iWant starting at 3 pm with the Battle for Third between PacificTown Army and BanKo Perlas.   For more stories and news on the PVL, follow @ABSCBNSports on Twitter and Facebook or visit sports.abs-cbn.com. For updates, follow @ABSCBNPR on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram or visit www.abs-cbn.com/newsroom......»»

Category: lifestyleSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 9th, 2019

Leonard-George tandem turns Clippers into legit contender

By Shaun Powell, NBA.com At the moment of truth, Kawhi Leonard went against his persona and caused a shakeup that wasn’t so quiet after all. Quite stunning, actually, was the Friday (Saturday, PHL time) series of events that directly affected four teams, caused a major trade of unprecedented details, and influenced the NBA Finals MVP to sign a free agent contract with the Clippers and instantly turning a franchise without a banner into a hardcore contender. Get your first look at the NBA’s top Rookies during NBA Summer League LIVE on NBA League Pass! Leonard is now joined by Paul George, who finished third in the 2018-19 MVP balloting and who requested a trade from Oklahoma City at the 11th hour to essentially swap Russell Westbrook for Leonard. The Clippers are now bringing a pair of swingman who excel on both ends of the floor, giving them the sort of dynamic tandem that’s almost required to win a title these days. The price for George was steep — basically, the Clippers surrendered more for George than the Lakers did for Anthony Davis. They handed over a chunk of their future, with three unprotected first-round picks (2022, 2024 and 2026) belonging to the Clippers, a pair of coveted Heat first rounders (2021 unprotected and 2023 protected 1-14) that were owned by LA, and the option to swap first-rounders with the Clippers in 2023 and 2025. OKC also gets 20-year-old point guard Shai-Gilgeous Alexander and veteran shooter Danilo Gallinari. And so the Clippers drastically changed their personality in the span of a few years, replacing the “Lob City” era of Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan with a feisty defensive club led by Kawhi, George, Pat Beverley and Montrezl Harrell. It’s also a team with three reputable scorers as well: Kawhi, George and Lou Williams. Imagine: The Clippers just upstaged the Lakers in an offseason where the Lakers added Davis to join LeBron James. Adding to the intrigue is the presence of Jerry West, the Laker Hall of Famer whose reign as general manager helped raise multiple banners, but whose touch as a consultant with the Clippers in this process is undeniable. Two summers ago when he joined the Clippers after serving the same role with the Warriors, it was West who persuaded the Clippers to trade Griffin, whom they just gave a maximum contract, to the Pistons. West believed Griffin’s best years were behind him and thought the Clippers would be better as a team with more salary cap flexibility going forward. Plus, West and GM Lawrence Frank traded Tobias Harris, the team’s leading scorer, to Philly at the February deadline rather than re-sign Harris this summer in free agency. All of this was done with the idea of signing an impact player in mind, and Leonard was that player and the Clippers’ top target over the last year. Leonard’s appeal to the Clippers was evident and easy to understand. He’s a player who can score 25 points and grab 7-8 rebounds and lock down his man on the other end of the floor. And of course, he just led the Raptors to a championship without being generously helped by a fellow superstar. Interestingly, Leonard had the option of having not just one, but two fellow superstars this summer had he chosen the Lakers. LeBron and Davis and Leonard would make for a championship favorite, especially when you add Kyle Kuzma to the mix. In the end, Leonard wanted to beat the Lakers, not join them. The Lakers still bring those three players, though, and will now garnish the team with minimum-waged players to fill out the roster. Already, Danny Green announced he’ll sign a two-year, $15 million deal with the Lakers, and Rajon Rondo is perhaps not far behind. Both the Lakers and Clippers could compete in the coming days for DeMarcus Cousins as well. The team harmed the most, at least in the immediate sense, is OKC. With the amount of top competitors in the West — Clippers, Lakers, Rockets, Nuggets, Jazz and Blazers among others — the Thunder likely will take a step back and could enter a semi-rebounding phase without George. Also: Could OKC be forced to part ways with Westbrook? The former MVP struggled at times last season and especially in the playoffs, and turns 31 in November, and is on a max contract. It’s not the type of atmosphere that fits Westbrook, who’ll soon enter his twilight. Thunder GM Sam Presti, if nothing else, has shown a willingness to do whatever it takes if it works for OKC. Lastly, there’s the Raptors, who must now go forward without their lone superstar. There are no other players on the level of Leonard that Toronto can chase this offseason. In addition, the core of their rotation is on expiring contracts — Marc Gasol, Kyle Lowry and Serge Ibaka. The Raptors will surely groom Pascal Siakam to take a lead role with Leonard gone, yet will face major decisions next summer as they attempt to reshape the team. All of this is because Leonard caused a domino effect that ultimately moved mountains. Something of this nature and this magnitude doesn’t happen often in the NBA and is never done virtually overnight, given the amount of pieces involved and teams who put their existence on hold while Leonard stretched his decision nearly a week since free agency began. Evidently there was a reason for that. He wanted the Clippers but only if they could add another major piece. When other options dried up — Jimmy Butler unexpectedly signing with Miami and Kevin Durant with Brooklyn, for instance — the Clippers had to go the trade route. And George had to be convinced by Kawhi to force a trade. And OKC had to agree to that, rather than risk going through a season with an unhappy player. When the Clippers coughed up a bevy for draft picks, that put the entire process in motion. And in the end, basketball in LA became the big winner. It would not be unusual or unexpected if the road to the next conference championship goes through Staples Center and gets decided by one of its two home teams. Shaun Powell has covered the NBA for more than 25 years. You can e-mail him here, find his archive here, and follow him on Twitter. The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or Turner Broadcasting. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 6th, 2019

Jet Spikers outlast Nationals; HD Spikers take semis top seed

Philippine Air Force showed its might as it overpowered Rebisco-Philippines, 25-23, 9-25, 23-25, 25-23, 16-14, Tuesday in the 2019 Spikers’ Turf Reinforced Conference at the Paco Arena in Manila.   Ranran Abdilla uncorked 24 points coming off 17 attacks, six aces, and a block while also adding 21 receptions and six digs for an all-around performance for the Jet Spikers, who tied Cignal with a 10-1 win-loss record. Fauzi Ismail added 14 markers for Air Force, which sent the Nationals to an 8-3 slate a day before the squad flies to Thailand for a weeklong tournament. Ismail scored off a kill as the Jet Spikers broke a 14-14 deuce in the deciding frame. Madz Gampong then delivered the final blow with a kill from the right wing. “Tinry ko ‘yung Air Force team ko kung hanggang saan sila aabot kapag wala yung sila Bryan [Bagunas], sila Kim [Malabunga], saka Francis [Saura], so ‘yun ginawa naman [nila] yung dapat nilang gawin,” said Air Force head coach Rhovyl Verayo. “[Pinahiram] ko muna ‘yung ibang players ko doon sa National Team kasi they’re going to Thailand tomorrow ‘di ba, kasi alam ko hindi pa rin sila buo eh,” he added. Bagunas collected 26 points on 22 attacks, three blocks, and an ace with his 17 excellent receptions for the Nationals. The National Team is set to fly out to Thailand on Wednesday for the 2019 Sealect Tuna Volleyball Championships. Meanwhile, after a disappointing loss to Sta. Elena last Sunday, Cignal vented its ire on the Animo Green Blazing Spikers, 25-21, 25-16, 25-17. Ysay Marasigan paced Cignal with 12 points while Marck Espejo added 11 points for the HD Spikers, who took the top seed in the semis by virtue of higher tiebreak over Air Force. Animo, who bowed out of competition with a 5-6 card, was led by Kieffer Reyes with six points. In a battle of also-ran squads, the Phoenix Volley Masters ran past the Philippine Coast Guard Dolphins in four sets, 27-25, 25-21, 20-25, 25-20, to notch their second win in nine outings. Razzel Palisoc fired 11 points on nine attacks and two blocks while Mark Enciso and Lorenze Santos had nine points each for IEM. Jonarth Molinyawe and Esmail Kasim both scored 14 points for Coast Guard, who remained winless in nine starts......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 2nd, 2019

Brazil beats Paraguay in shootout in Copa América quarters

By Eric Nunez, Associated Press PORTO ALEGRE, Brazil (AP) — Facing early elimination in the Copa América at home, Brazil finally found a way to get past Paraguay in a penalty shootout. After two consecutive eliminations against its southern neighbor, Brazil came out on top on penalties on Thursday to avoid an embarrassing elimination in the quarterfinals of the South American tournament. Goalkeeper Alisson made a save and Gabriel Jesus scored the decisive penalty as Brazil defeated Paraguay 4-3 in the shootout to return to the semifinals for the first time since 2007. Alisson dived to his left to stop the initial penalty by defender Gustavo Gómez, and Gabriel Jesus sealed the victory to keep Brazil on track for its first Copa América title since 2007. Brazil will next face either Venezuela or Argentina, which play on Friday in Rio de Janeiro. Brazil had lost to Paraguay the last two times the teams met in the Copa América quarterfinals, in 2011 and 2015, both times in penalty shootouts. Derlis González also missed from the spot for Paraguay, while Roberto Firmino failed to score for Brazil. Both players sent their shots wide. González, who also missed a penalty in Paraguay's 1-1 draw against Argentina in the group stage, had scored the decisive goal in the 2015 shootout. He was one of the five players back from that team that eliminated Brazil. Willian, Marquinhos and Philippe Coutinho converted their penalties for Brazil, while Miguel Almirón, Bruno Valdez and Rodrigo Rojas netted for Paraguay. "My teammates did their part, they took on the responsibility and succeeded. That was crucial," Alisson said. "This was an important step toward our goal of winning the South American title." Gabriel Jesus had missed a late penalty in Brazil's 5-0 rout of Peru in its last group game, but calmly found the net with his shot from the spot as Paraguay goalkeeper Roberto "Gatito" Fernández went the other way, igniting the Brazilian crowd of more than 48,000 at the Arena Grêmio. "I was confident, I knew that if I took the penalty the way I'm used to taking it, I would have more chances of scoring," Gabriel Jesus said. "I was upset after the other match because I didn't take the shot my own way. This time I waited for the goalkeeper to move and just sent the ball the other way." Gatito had been key in regulation as the visitors held on to a 0-0 draw despite having a defender sent off in the 58th minute. In the Copa America quarterfinals, extra time is not played and the match proceeded straight to penalties. Paraguay played with 10 men after Fabián Balbuena was sent off for a foul that was initially called a penalty kick but was reversed after video review determined the foul happened outside the area. "We have to be proud of the character shown by this team," said Paraguay coach Eduardo Berizzo, an Argentine. "We could have been rewarded with a wonderful and heroic triumph in the penalty shootout, but that doesn't take anything away from my players' great performance." Brazil controlled possession but struggled to create scoring opportunities against Paraguay's solid defensive system. The visitors had one of the best chances of the first half when González's close-range shot was saved by Alisson. Brazil pressed nearly full-time after Balbuena was sent off, but couldn't capitalize on its many opportunities. Gabriel Jesus, Coutinho, Everton and Firmino all missed great chances in front of the goal. Fernández made a great reflex save on a close-range header by Alex Sandro near the end of the match, and in the 90th Fernández could only watch as a low shot by Willian struck the post. Brazil coach Tite said the poor field conditions didn't help Brazil's attack. "It's absurd to have to play on a field where it's difficult to exchange passes," Tite said. Despite reaching the semifinals in 2015 and finishing runner-up in 2011, Paraguay has won only one of its last 21 matches in the Copa América, taking advantage of penalty shootouts to advance. Paraguay reached the last eight this year with only two points, finishing as one of the two best third-place teams from the three groups. Paraguay and Brazil failed to make it out of the group stage in the 2016 Copa América. An eight-time South American champion, Brazil has won the tournament all four previous times it hosted the event, the last time in 1989. Brazil's Neymar, dropped from the squad because of an ankle injury sustained just before the tournament, watched from the tribunes at the Arena Grêmio......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 28th, 2019

10 NCAA players to watch in Season 95

It’s important to note that half of the players who were picked in the first round of the 2018 PBA Draft were products of the country’s first collegiate sports league. CJay Perez and Robert Bolick have immediately become the cornerstones of Columbian Dyip and NorthPort Batang Pier, respectively. Javee Mocon, Jesper Ayaay, Michael Calisaan and JP Calvo have all received high praise from the coaches of their new teams. While last season’s heroes are now living their lifelong dreams in the PBA, new stars are looking to shine as NCAA Season 95 opens on July 7 at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City. James Kwekuteye (SBU)   If there is one player worthy enough to succeed Bolick as the King Lion of Mendiola, it’s the 6’3” Fil-Canadian shooting guard, James Kwekuteye. As a rookie, Kwekuteye came off the bench for majority of the season and had limited time to really put his talent on display. But, when he did start, particularly in San Beda’s second round game against LPU, Kwekuteye proved that he could be a major threat as he scored a career-high 18 points for the Red Lions, matching the scoring output of Bolick. In that game, Bolick motivated Kwekuteye by saying, “they can’t stop you.” James Kwekuteye introduces himself to Lyceum with 18 big points! #NCAASeason94 #GalingNCAA pic.twitter.com/OQS5eZBTJL — ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) October 18, 2018 As the new starting shooting guard of Coach Boyet Fernandez, Kwekuteye led San Beda in scoring in the 2019 Fil-Oil Flying V Pre-season Cup averaging 14.1 points per game.    Evan Nelle (SBU)   Another talented player who didn’t see the floor much last year due to the loaded roster of guards on the San Beda lineup was former NCAA Jrs. Finals MVP Evan Nelle. Evan Nelle repays coach Boyet Fernandez' trust by drilling the early three! #NCAASeason94 #GalingNCAA pic.twitter.com/kpfdsnro2i — ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) September 11, 2018 Nelle was the fourth string point guard behind Bolick, Jo Presbitero and Radge Tongco in Season 94. But, with the graduation of all three aforementioned players, the keys to the Red Lions’ offense has fallen straight into Nelle’s hands. While sharing the backcourt with Kwekuteye, Nelle led San Beda to the 2019 FilOil Championship and averaged a league-best 4.7 assists per contest.    Donald Tankoua (SBU)   Aside from capturing the title in the country’s most prestigious pre-season tournament, Kwekuteye and Nelle were also named to the Mythical Five along with their starting center, Donald Tankoua.  Donald Tankoua drops 23 points to help San Beda end the eliminations on a high note. #NCAASeason94 #GalingNCAA pic.twitter.com/EUFpXnAt8T — ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) October 23, 2018 The 6’6” Cameroonian big man has always been one of the most consistent players, year in and year out in the NCAA and will continue to be as he plays out his final year of eligibility in Season 95. Because he’s a walking double-double, expect Tankoua to be the early favorite to win MVP.   Mike Harry Nzeusseu (LPU)   Now, if there is anybody who possesses the physical attributes and the numbers to challenge Tankoua’s MVP campaign, it’s LPU’s Mike Harry Nzeusseu. Mike Harry Nzeusseu gets NASTY ???? #NCAASeason94 #NCAAFinals pic.twitter.com/yEAr0ywBPd — ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) November 12, 2018 Nzeusseu ended last season without confirming that he would return to play one more year with the Pirates but his participation in the Fil-Oil tournament tells us that he will be back to anchor the defense of Coach Topex Robinson. And without Perez, the 6’6” center from the Republic of Cameroon will also have to do major damage on the offensive end as well.  Jayson David (LPU)   Jayson David picks Robert Bolick's pocket for the transition finish! #NCAASeason93 #NCAAStrong pic.twitter.com/Inl17UZbKq — ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) November 7, 2017 Back in Season 91, the NCAA added a Most Improved Player trophy to their list of awardees for every basketball tournament. Based on the pre-season, former San Sebastian guard Jayson David has emerged as the frontrunner for that award as he has assumed the starting spot of Perez with LPU. David is no “Baby Beast”, but it seems that Robinson trusts him enough to be a critical piece in the Pirates’ quest to capture that elusive NCAA championship. He averaged 7.3 PPG, 6 RPG and 2.1 APG in the Fil-Oil tourney.   Jeo Ambohot (CSJL)   Another player who seems to have earned the trust of his coach is Jeo Ambohot. Under Coach Jeff Napa, the ‘23 for 23’ Gilas World Cup pool member came off the bench and underachieved, only averaging 7.2 PPG and 7.2 RPG for the Knights in Season 94. Jeo Ambohot can hit this all game long! ???? #NCAASeason94 #GalingNCAA pic.twitter.com/5NCj7tV7Gt — ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) October 9, 2018 However, under new Letran Head Coach Bonnie Tan, Ambohot was being utilized as the starting center with last year’s Rookie of the Year, Larry Muyang coming off the bench in their pre-season games. Nevertheless, a player like Ambohot should not be happy with his dismal outing last year and should come out stronger in Season 95.    Renato Ular (CSJL)   Here’s a guy you probably haven’t heard about before. His name is Renato Ular. Ring a bell? Probably not. The last time he saw action was during his rookie year in Season 92. Actually, he didn’t even do much back then. He only played in four games in did not score a single point in any of those games. After two years as a spectator, Ular has finally rejoined the Letran lineup and was their best player in the Fil-Oil tournament averaging 9.8 PPG and 8.1 RPG. The last left-handed legend from Letran was Rey Nambatac. This lefty’s got a long way to go to get on the Sting Rey’s level, but expect him to be one of the Knights' primary attackers this year.   RK Ilagan (SSC-R)   RK Ilagan was FEELING IT from downtown, dropping a new career-high 2??6?? PTS vs Mapua! #NCAASeason94 #GalingNCAA pic.twitter.com/SDIaVmtzCF — ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) October 12, 2018 Speaking of attacking, one player who will be more relentless than he’s ever been this Season 95 is RK Ilagan. The pride of Barrio Fugoso, Tondo, Manila ranked seventh in scoring last year, averaging 15.2 PPG and was the Golden Stags’ leading scorer despite the presence of Calisaan. Coach Egay Macaraya loves a shooter and will continue to give the green light to Ilagan who made more triples (40) than any player in the NCAA in Season 94.    Kent Salado (AU)   Prior to injuring his right knee on October 10, 2017 in an 85-79 Arellano win over SSC-R in Season 93, Kent Salado was one of the most exciting players in the NCAA. The spitfire point guard from Cagayan de Oro was averaging 19.1 PPG (2nd behind Perez) and 5.0 APG (2nd behind Bolick) for the Chiefs, taking over the driver’s seat that Jiovani Jalalon occupied during their run to the Finals in Season 92. Lervin Flores with a nice block, Kent Salado with an even better finish! #NCAASeason93 #NCAAStrong pic.twitter.com/ohK28fFFhS — ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) September 15, 2017 Now that he’s finally had surgery to repair what was eventually revealed to be a torn ACL, Salado is looking to excite fans anew especially since Arellano University will serve as the host of the NCAA for the first time in league history. Justin Gutang (CSB)   Recently, I asked former Arellano Head Coach Jerry Codi?era who he thought had the makings of a star in the NCAA now that the likes of Perez and Bolick are in the pros. The “Defense Minister” immediately mentioned one name: Justin Gutang. The 6’3” Fil-American forward from San Francisco, California had an impressive rookie season, averaging 13.4 PPG, 6.2 RPG and 4.3 APG for the Blazers and winning the Slam Dunk contest along the way. Although we haven’t heard much from Gutang in the off-season, the fact that a PBA Legend still has him on his radar means that the kid’s potential cannot be ignored. ?Editor's Note: The list is based on pre-season performances of teams. There are some NCAA teams who have not partcipated in pre-season tournaments nor released line-ups.  ?Catch NCAA Season 95 starting July 7, Sunday, 11:30 am LIVE on S+A, S+A HD, Liga, Liga HD, iWant and via livestream.    .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 27th, 2019

About face: US routs Trinidad 6-0 in Gold Cup

By Tom Withers, Associated Press CLEVELAND (AP) — The only embarrassment and shame was felt on the other side. Two years later, the U.S. soccer team turned the tables on Trinidad and Tobago. Gyasi Zardes scored two goals in a three-minute span, Christian Pulisic added one during a five-goal barrage in the second half and the Americans unloaded on their nemesis in a 6-0 blowout in the CONCACAF Gold Cup on Saturday night, earning a small dose of revenge over the team that handed them a nightmarish loss in 2017. Aaron Long scored his first two international goals — one with his head, the other off his chest — and Paul Arriola scored as the U.S. tallied five times in 25 minutes while cruising to its second shutout this week and advancing to the quarterfinals in Philadelphia on June 30. It was the first matchup between the U.S. and Trinidad and Tobago since Oct. 10, 2017, when the Americans, needing only a tie to qualify for the 2018 World Cup, lost 2-1 to the Soca Warriors. The embarrassing defeat snapped a streak of seven straight World Cup appearances by the Americans and triggered a top-to-bottom overhaul of the men's program, which has operated in the imposing shadow of the powerful U.S. women, seeking their fourth world title in France. There would be no repeat performance by this revamped U.S. team, which is determined to win back global respect. "Every time we step on the field we want to make a statement," said Zardes, who just missed getting a third goal. "We're trying to change the way the world views American soccer." The Americans posted their most lopsided win since beating Honduras 6-0 in a World Cup qualifier on March 24, 2017, when Pulisic, who took over this game in the second half, also scored and had a pair of assists. But while much of the pre-game talk centered on the U.S. getting payback, the Americans insist they've put the past behind them. "For us, we advance to the next round," coach Gregg Berhalter said. "That's important. Our focus was to prepare for this game knowing that if we'd be able to go to the next round. That was the focus of the group. Trinidad was in our way." Not anymore. With the U.S. leading 1-0 on Long's goal in the 41st minute, Zardes scored from right in front shortly after U.S. goalkeeper Zack Steffen made a diving save to stop Trinidad from tying a match the Americans dominated. Michael Bradley chipped the ball from the left side to a charging Nick Lima, who headed the ball to Zardes in front. The American striker only had to guide it by Trinidad keeper Marvin Phillip in the 65th minute. Two minutes later, Zardes buried a hard shot from the left side for his 10th international goal and second two-goal game for the Americans. Zardes nearly completed a hat trick, but his low shot from up top in the 70th minute hit the left upright. Next up for the Americans is a matchup with Panama on Wednesday in Kansas City, Kansas. The Panamanians improved to 2-0 in Group D of the 16-team tournament with a 4-2 win over Guyana, also clinching a quarterfinal berth. On a picture-perfect night along the shores of Lake Erie, the American team controlled possession and tempo while thoroughly outplaying T&T, which was blanked 2-0 by Panama in its opening match and was eliminated. The Soca Warriors were content to sit back and let the U.S. attack, hoping to spring counters. They nearly connected in the 61st minute as Cordell Cato eluded three defenders on the right side and hit teammate Levi Garcia in stride. But Garcia's shot was high and wide, a close call that prompted a collective gasp from the U.S. faithful. "Big moment," Trinidad coach Dennis Lawrence said. "When you get in that position, you have to put that away." Lawrence was upset with how his team collapsed following the U.S. team's second goal. "How can you play so good for 65 minutes and then so awful for the last 25?" he said, repeating his postgame message to his players. "We have to learn to stand up and fight. We lost focus and we paid the price." Berhalter stuck with the same starting lineup he used in the opener over Guyana but gave the captain's arm band to Steffen for the first time. Bradley captained the Americans in the opening 4-0 win over Guyana. Long, who plays in the MLS for the New York Red Bulls, put the U.S. ahead off a beautiful feed from the left side by Pulisic. Shortly after the U.S. was awarded a free kick, the Americans kept pressing and maintained possession in Trinidad's half before Pulisic spotted Long inside the 6-yard-box and delivered an arching pass to the forward, who left his feet, connected and drove the ball past a sprawling Phillip. The score touched off a flag-waving celebration behind the goal by red-white-and blue clad U.S. fans, who have been anxiously awaiting their team's chance at some redemption. After a 20-month wait, they got a little......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 23rd, 2019

The ten most intriguing NBA free agents for 2019

By John Schuhmann, NBA.com We knew that the postseason would affect free agency. But the idea was that the success or failure of certain teams would affect what their free agents' thoughts about staying or leaving. Unfortunately, the last two games of The Finals brought devastating injuries to two of the three most coveted free agents on the market. Kevin Durant, arguably the best player in the world, tore his Achilles in Game 5, just 12 minutes into his return from a calf injury. And Klay Thompson tore his ACL in Game 6. The two injuries will certainly have repercussions beyond the two players and the Golden State Warriors. Maybe they already have. With the Western Conference seemingly wide open next season, the Los Angeles Lakers have reportedly made a deal for Anthony Davis, sending a bevy of young players and future picks to New Orleans so they can team the 26-year-old star with 34-year-old LeBron James ... and maybe another star added in free agency. As always, the free agent market and the trade market are tied together. The pending Davis trade could affect the decisions of players and teams come July 1. And if teams miss out on the free agents they're seeking, they could always fill their cap space by making a trade. With all that in mind, the players listed below aren't necessarily the 10 best free agents (or potential free agents). They're the 10 (actually 12) most interesting in regard to where they're going and what kind of contract they get. For players to be on this list, there needs to be some intrigue regarding their (and/or their team's) decision this summer. That's why Thompson isn't included. 1. Kawhi Leonard, Toronto (Player option) Whether he leaves or not, trading for Leonard last summer was well worth it for the Raptors, who won their first championship, with Leonard averaging 30.5 points per game in the postseason. The Raptors' "load management" program (which limited Leonard to just 60 games in the regular season) clearly worked, and director of sports science Alex McKechnie should be seen as a major asset in the quest to keep Leonard in Toronto. There should be a "run-it-back" sentiment for the new champs, with Danny Green also a free agent and Marc Gasol holding a player option this summer. A short-term deal would make sense, unless Leonard is looking for long-term security, having missed almost all of the 2017-18 season with a leg injury. It's all up to Leonard, maybe the toughest player in the league to read. If he takes his two-way talent elsewhere, the Raptors may have to go in a new direction. Number to know: In the postseason, Leonard had a true shooting percentage of 69.1 percent, the highest mark for a player that averaged at least 30 points per game in the playoffs and won the championship. 2. Kevin Durant, Golden State (Player option) Durant's torn Achilles probably won't scare any team, including the Warriors, from paying him as much as possible. As deep and talented as this free agent class is, the top two guys on this list are in a class by themselves. Rumors have long had Durant ready to leave Golden State and even with his injury, he seems more likely than Thompson to find a new home. But an ESPN report had Thompson's father talking about "unfinished business" after overhearing a conversation between the two injured Warriors. Durant could always put free agency off for a year by exercising his player option and remaining on the Warriors' payroll through his rehab. Number to know: Durant was the first player in NBA history to average 30 points per game in at least 10 playoff games while shooting at least 50 percent from the field, 40 percent from three-point range and 90 percent from the free throw line. 3. Kyrie Irving, Boston The disappointment of the Celtics' season, along with Irving's questionable leadership with a group that underachieved, has taken some of the shine off his star. Irving's injury history also must be taken into consideration. But talent is the most important thing in this league and Irving is one of its most talented players. He's still just 27-years-old and he can still get buckets when buckets are needed. A return to Boston appears far less likely than it did six months ago (especially with Davis being traded elsewhere) and there have been a lot of signals that Irving is bound for Brooklyn. Number to know: In the regular season, Irving had an effective field goal percentage of 56.1 percent with the score within five points in the last five minutes of the fourth quarter or overtime, the second-best mark among player with at least 50 clutch field goal attempts. 4. Jimmy Butler and Tobias Harris, Philadelphia The Sixers lost to the eventual NBA champions on a Game 7 buzzer-beater that bounced on the rim four times before falling through. They're right there. But their starting lineup, which outscored its opponents by more than 21 points per 100 possessions in 334 total minutes (regular season and playoffs), includes three free agents. In regard to future assets, the Sixers didn't give up as much for Butler as they did for Harris. And of course, Butler has more baggage in regard to accepting his role. But, with his defense and his ability to get his own shot, he's is the most important of the three. Harris struggled a bit in the conference semifinals against Toronto and is the least important of the Sixers' three free-agent starters; J.J. Redick's shooting was clearly more critical in the postseason. But Harris isn't easily replaceable and he appears to be the most likely to leave, with a lot of teams looking for versatile forwards. Number to know: In the regular season, Harris shot 41.3 percent on pull-up three-pointers, the second-best mark among 69 players who attempted at least 100. 5. Kemba Walker, Charlotte Walker has expressed some level of loyalty to the Hornets. But immediately after the Davis trade was agreed to, there was a report that Walker would be a "top target" of the Lakers with their cap space. Walker would be an ideal offensive complement to James and Davis, in that he can play off the ball (though he shot less than 35 percent on catch-and-shoot three-pointers last season) and take some of the playmaking burden off of James' shoulders. The Hornets, meanwhile, would likely have a tough time upgrading their roster around Walker, with Nicolas Batum, Bismack Biyombo, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Marvin Williams and Cody Zeller all under contract next season for a total of $85 million. Number to know: Walker led the league with 126 field goal attempts with the score within five points in the last five minutes. That was 43 percent of the Hornets' total (295). His effective field goal percentage on those shots (49.6 percent) ranked 15th among 45 players with at least 50 clutch field goal attempts. 6. D'Angelo Russell, Brooklyn (Restricted) A finalist for the Most Improved award, Russell took a big step forward this season, both in regard to his production and his maturity. He earned himself an All-Star appearance and helped the Nets reach the playoffs with a 14-win increase from last season. He's only 23-years-old and is one of the league's most flammable shooters. But because he doesn't get to the basket or the free throw line very often, Russell is neither all that efficient (his true shooting percentage of 53.3 percent ranked 66th among 94 guards with at least 500 field goal attempts) nor consistent, and he struggled (shooting 36 percent) in Brooklyn's first-round loss to Philadelphia. If the Nets are targeting another ball-handler in free agency (with Caris LeVert and Spencer Dinwiddie already under contract), they'll probably let Russell head elsewhere. Number to know: In the regular season, Russell ranked second with 11.4 pick-and-roll ball-handler possessions per game. He scored 0.89 points per possession as a pick-and-roll ball-handler, the 26th best mark among 44 players that averaged at least five ball-handler possessions. 7. DeMarcus Cousins and Kevon Looney, Golden State Cousins hadn't made it back to 100 percent from his Achilles tear before he suffered a torn quad in his second career playoff game. He made it back for The Finals from that injury and showed flashes of his old self with 14 important points in the Warriors' Game 5 win and a big bucket in the final minute of Game 6. But he also struggled on both ends of the floor at times, and the Warriors were outscored with him on the floor in seven of his eight playoff games. Now he goes back on the free agent market with teams still not sure of what they're getting. Looney is an unrestricted free agent at 23-years-old, and he was the Warriors' most important center this season. The Western Conference champs have Looney's Bird rights, but they could also be spending a lot of money to retain Durant and Thompson (and possibly extend Draymond Green). Another team might have a larger role and more money for an improving young big. Number to know: In the regular season, the Warriors' lineup of Curry, Thompson, Durant, Green and Looney scored 121.5 points per 100 possessions and outscored opponents by 18.7 per 100. Those were the best marks for points scored and point differential per 100 possessions among 40 league-wide lineups that played at least 200 minutes together. 8. Malcolm Brogdon, Milwaukee (Restricted) The Milwaukee Bucks were the best team in the league through the first two games of the Eastern Conference finals. But, with four of their top eight players being free agents (or potential free agents) this summer, they have a lot of work to do if they want to keep Giannis Antetokounmpo surrounded by players who can get it done on both ends of the floor. Brogdon, Khris Middleton and Brook Lopez are the three key pieces. They're all due a pay raise and they all belong on this list. Brogdon is the restricted free agent, but he's also the youngest of the three (he'll be 27 in December) and the one that could be projected into a larger role on another team. Number to know: Brogdon shot 47.5 percent on catch-and-shoot three-pointers, the third-best mark among 223 players who attempted at least 100. 9. Julius Randle, New Orleans (Player option) After five years in the league, Randle is still just 24-years-old. So he's not necessarily a bad fit for David Griffin's plans for the future in New Orleans. But the Pelicans might not be ready to commit the money Randle is seeking (should he opt out of the final year of his contract) after averaging a career-high 21.4 points per game. Defense remains an issue, but Randle has expanded his offensive skill set; he was a respectable 34.4 percent from three-point range this season, taking 18 percent of his shots from beyond the arc (up from six percent over his three previous full seasons). Number to know: Randle averaged 13.2 points in the paint per game, seventh most in the league, and he made more three-pointers (67) than all but one of the six players in front of him. 10. Ricky Rubio, Utah According to Rubio himself, he's not Utah's top priority in free agency. He remains a good defender and one of the league's best passers, but the Jazz need to get more potent offensively if they're going to take the next step. At 31.1 percent, Rubio ranked 153rd in three-point percentage among 163 players with at least 200 attempts. There could be as many as 10 teams (not including the Jazz) in need of a starting point guard this summer, and Rubio could have more value on a team more in need of a distributor. Number to know: The Jazz were 5.8 points per 100 possessions better offensively with both Rubio and Donovan Mitchell on the floor (scoring 110.4 per 100) than they were with Mitchell on the floor without Rubio (104.6). John Schuhmann is a senior stats analyst for NBA.com. You can e-mail him here, find his archive here and follow him on Twitter. The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or Turner Broadcasting......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 17th, 2019

PVL: Perlas Spikers part ways with Bright, bring in Chuewulim

After putting import Kia Bright on a leash the last time out, BanKo parted ways with the Americana and brought in Thai reinforcement Sutadta Chuewulim. The Thai national team member flew to Iloilo with the Perlas Spikers for their Premier Volleyball League Season 3 Reinforced Conference encounter with defending champion Creamline at the University of San Agustin gym on Saturday. Bright, who was in her second stint with the Perlas Spikers, saw limited minutes in BanKo’s 23-25, 11-25, 25-22, 20-25, defeat at the hands of league-leading PetroGazz last Wednesday. She only played in the first two sets, coming off the bench in the opening frame before starting in the next. Bright, who averaged 16.2 points in the tournament, scored only one point. BanKo declined to comment on the real score for Bright’s limited minutes, calling it a ‘coach and management decision’.       Chuewulim, who has played in the defunct V-League and the Philippine Superliga before, gives additional scoring punch for the Perlas Spikers and will bring more muscle to BanKo’s defense. Her all-around game fits the system of the Perlas Spikers and will complement the local crew led by Nicole Tiamzon, Kathy Bersola, Dzi Gervacio and Sue Roces.      BanKo is coming off a back-to-back loss for a 2-4 win-loss record and Chuewulim’s arrival could help the Perlas Spikers turn their campaign around.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 15th, 2019

San Beda, La Salle score convincing victories in Filoil Preseason

San Beda University and De La Salle University both ended their elimination round assignments in the 2019 Filoil Flying V Preseason Tournament on the right note with separate convincing victories, Friday at Filoil Flying V Centre. The Red Lions battled back from 10 points down to frustrate University of Sto. Tomas, 75-73. James Canlas fronted the rally and fired 21 points on top of three assists and two rebounds for the three-time NCAA champions who finished off an elims sweep with their seventh win in a row. Donald Tankoua brought the backup with a 19-point, 14-rebound double-double while Ralph Penuela and Clint Doliguez chimed in eight and seven markers, respectively. With the win, San Beda cemented its place as the top-seed in Group A. Meanwhile, the Green Archers clinched Group A's second-seed with a well-earned 84-70 win at the expense of San Sebastian College-Recoletos. The Taft-based team now turns its attention to Group B 3-seed Colegio de San Juan de Letran in the quarterfinals on Monday still at the same venue. In the day's other game, Far Eastern University gored Jose Rizal University, 66-53. Rookie playmaker Royce Alforque broke out with 14 points and three rebounds as the Tamaraws now charge into their quarters meeting with San Beda on a five-game win run. The Growling Tigers and the Heavy Bombers bowed out of the preseason tournament with 2-5 and 1-6 records, respectively. BOX SCORES FIRST GAME FEU 66 -- Alforque 14, Cani 12, Celzo 9, Nunag 6, Gloria 5, Tchuente 4, Eboña 4, Dulatre 3, Torres 2, Stockton 2, Tuffin 2, Casino 2, Tempra 1, Comboy 0, Mantua 0, Roman 0. JRU 53 -- Miranda 14, Amores 10, Dionisio 8, Delos Santos 4, Dela Virgen 3, Vasquez 3, Bordon 3, Steinl 2, Jungco 2, Abaoag 2, Aguilar 2, Dela Rosa 0, Arenal 0, Dulalia 0, Aguado 0. QUARTER SCORES: 20-19, 31-30, 49-39, 66-53. SECOND GAME SAN BEDA 75 - Canlas 21, Tankoua 19, Penuela 8, Doliguez 7, Nelle 6, Noah 6, Oftana 4, Bahio 4, Abuda 0, Etrata 0, Alfaro 0, Cuntapay 0, Obenza 0, Ejercito 0. UST 73 -- Chabi Yo 24, Nonoy 15, Abando 13, Paraiso 10, Ando 5, Subido 3, Huang 3, Bataller 0, Tarranza 0, Cosejo 0. QUARTER SCORES: 16-22, 30-40, 50-54, 75-73. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 14th, 2019

Fowler and the USGA off to a good start at US Open

By Doug Ferguson, Associated Press PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. (AP) — Rickie Fowler had an ideal start Thursday in the U.S. Open, and so did the USGA. Pebble Beach was as gentle as could be in the opening round, and Fowler was among those who took advantage with six birdies for a 5-under 66, giving him a share of the early lead with Xander Schauffele and Louis Oosthuizen. The notorious wind off the Pacific coast was little more than a breeze. The course was lush green and relatively soft. The USGA wanted to start conservatively and make it progressively more difficult, a forecast of dry weather gives officials a lot more control. This was the day to take advantage. Schauffele, who keeps showing up in golf's biggest events, holed a 12-foot eagle putt on the par-5 18th to join Fowler at 66. Oosthuizen holed out for eagle from 95 yards at No. 11, his second hole of the day. "It's a very soft start to a U.S. Open, which is a good thing," Rory McIlroy said after a 68, his first sub-70 round at the U.S. Open since he won at Congressional in 2011. "They can do whatever they want with from here. It's not as if you're starting with a course that's in the condition like a Sunday, and then you get three days and it sort of starts to get away from you." Two-time defending champion Brooks Koepka and Tiger Woods played in the afternoon. Koepka reached 4 under through seven holes until a bogey on No. 8, while Woods had three birdies to atone for a double bogey on par-3 fifth. He was 1 under through seven. Scott Piercy made bogey on the 18th for a 67. He was the first player to get everyone's attention when he made three birdies and an eagle through the opening six holes — the scoring holes at Pebble — and was 5 under. Graeme McDowell saw the score when he walked off the 10th green at the start of his round and quipped to his caddie, "All the USGA radios are going off and they're saying, 'Turn off the water — NOW!'" McDowell won the last U.S. Open at Pebble Beach in 2010 when it was so difficult he made only one birdie in the final round and no one broke par for the week. Even as he saw low scores on the board — he had a bogey-free 69, one of 16 rounds in the 60s among the early starters — McDowell feared what was to come. What really got his attention was Phil Mickelson being some 30 feet above the hole at No. 1, which should ordinarily have been a lightning fast putt. Mickelson left it short. "I don't think level par wins this week," he said. "Careful what you wish for, because I think we're going to see it come the weekend." Mickelson, in his fifth attempt at the career Grand Slam, opened with a 72 that certainly didn't hurt him, but only two birdies held him back. Two of his bogeys came from missing the fairway with an iron off the tee. The other was a careless three-putt — he missed from 22 inches. Dustin Johnson was only one shot better, and he could have been a lot worse except for a magnificent short game, no shot better than his flop shop from well behind the eighth green to 2 feet. He nearly drove the green on No. 4, a dangerous shot because the coast line hugs the right side. Why driver? "Because I'd bogeyed the last two holes," Johnson said with a wry smile. "I needed a birdie." That wasn't impatience that often dooms chances at a U.S. Open. That was recognition that scores were to be had, and this might be the best day. Fowler picked up three birdies in seven holes, dropped a shot at the turn and added three birdies on the back. It's the second time in three years at the U.S. Open he has started well — he had a 65 in the first round at Erin Hills — but the focus is on how he finishes. Even though he's 30, with seven victories on the PGA Tour and European Tour combined, Fowler is on that list of best without a major, perhaps because he's had so many top finishes. So the start was important. "It was very stress free," Fowler said. "You never feel in cruise control at a major, especially a U.S. Open, but the execution was very good today. ... It was the worst I could have shot, so that's a good thing. I'm happy with the start. You can't go out and win it up the first day, but you can obviously take yourself out of it and you're having to fight back." Schauffele also appears poised to break through in his third full year on tour. He first gained attention with his tie for fifth in his U.S. Open debut two years ago, and he tied for sixth last year at Shinnecock Hills. He also has runner-up finishes in the British Open and the Masters. His big break came at the end when he caught his drive off the toe and it hit off a rock framing the left side, bounding down the fairway. From there, he only had 8-iron to set up his eagle. "Very fortunate, and happy we capitalized on a really lucky break," he said......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 14th, 2019