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San Beda aims to steal No. 2 Group A spot in Filoil cagefest

San Beda University can steal the second seed of Group A from La Salle......»»

Category: sportsSource: philstar philstarJun 14th, 2018

LSGH, Mapua remain 1-2 now in stretch run of NCAA 94

STANDINGS LSGH 12-2 MAPUA 11-3 SAN BEDA 9-4 JRU 8-6 LPU 6-7 ARELLANO 5-7 SAN SEBASTIAN 5-8 PERPETUAL 5-9 LETRAN 3-10 EAC 3-11 The top two spots in the NCAA 94 Juniors Basketball Tournament remain in the hands of the favorites to go to the Finals. Defending champion College of St. Benilde-La Salle Greenhills and runner-up Mapua High School both protected their inside tracks to a twice-to-beat advantage by pounding on their respective foes on Friday at the Filoil Flying V Centre. The Junior Blazers officially clinched a playoff berth after making quick work of Emilio Aguinaldo College, 77-61. Inand Fornilos led a total of five players in double-digits for the defending champions with 14 points on top of four rebounds, one assist, one steal, and one block. Joshua David and Joel Cagulangan also did their part with the former finishing with 12 points, eight rebounds, and three assists and the latter ending with 10 markers, 10 boards, seven dimes, and two steals. Now at 12-2, CSB-LSGH has assured itself of a spot in the next round. Meanwhile, the Red Robins moved one step closer to their own playoff berth after routing University of Perpetual Help, 96-73. The return of Clint Escamis only energized Mapua as their main man had 16 points, three rebounds, and three assists in just 20 minutes of action. Karl Mariano also scored 16 points of his own as they improved to 11-3. Dan Arches and Roseler Sarias each chipped in 14 points as well while Jonnel Policarpio had 10 markers and seven rebounds all while leading their domination of their opponents in inside points, 50-30. Their respective losses dropped the Junior Altas to 5-9 and the Brigadiers to 3-11. BOX SCORES FIRST GAME MAPUA 96 – Escamis 16, Mariano 16, Sarias 14, Arches 14, Policarpio 10, Hernandez 7, Smith 5, Diaz 4, Tagal 4, Quimado 2, Dennison 2, Lazarte 2, Chavez 0, Fransman 0, Samonteza 0 PERPETUAL 73 – Galman 17, Kawamura 16, Ogunsanya 10, Orgo 9, Galoy 7, Nunez 5, Lauchengco 4, Barcuma 2, Dela Cruz 2, Romilla 1, Defante 0 QUARTER SCORES: 20-16, 43-34, 72-49, 96-73 SECOND GAME CSB-LSGH 77 – Fornilos 14, Lopez 13, David 12, Calimag 11, Cagulangan 10, Morales 6, Mosqueda 5, Valenzuela 4, Palencia 2, Lao 0, Sangco 0, Cortez 0, Arciaga 0, Lepalam 0, Natividad 0 EAC 61 – Balowa 26, Ilustrisimo 15, Quebral 8, Sanosa 4, Boado 2, Pascual 2, Lozano 2, Sumagaysay 2, Rivera 0, Calara 0, Mejia 0, Encila 0, Murillo 0 QUARTER SCORES: 19-16, 36-22, 56-42, 77-61 --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 28th, 2018

Filoil q’final round on

From 19 teams, the Filoil Flying V Preseason Cup is down to the final eight as the quarterfinal round gets going this Thursday at Filoil Flying V Centre. College of St. Benilde, which topped Group B with a 7-1 record, will take on Group A fourth seed University of the Philippines in the opening match at 1 p.m. The Blazers will have their hands full against the Maroons, who rebounded from three straight losses to win their next six assignments. In the 2:45 p.m. offering, defending champion and reigning NCAA titlist San Beda University will face Adamson. The Red Lions' late charge in the standings saw them pull down the La Salle Archers from the No. 2 spot despite their similar...Keep on reading: Filoil q’final round on.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJun 27th, 2018

Gilas Cadets crush Cardinals for third win

Robert Bolick debuted with a bang as he led the beefed up Gilas Pilipinas Cadets, 97-78, over Mapua University on Monday in Group A of the 12th FilOil Flying V Preseason Cup at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. The San Beda University star scored 13 points in his first game for the national squad, which won its third game in eight outings. Aside from Bolick, Fil-American Troy Rike and Ateneo stars Matt Nieto and Thirdy Ravena saw action for the Gilas Cadets for the first time. Rike, a recruit from Wake Forest, finished with 11 points and eight rebounds while Nieto and Ravena, who played for the Blue Eagles earlier in a 108-44 blowout win over Emilio Aguinaldo College, chipped in with nine and eight points, respectively, for the Gilas Cadets. Kobe Paras had 12.      “We’re just experimenting on some things. We played three bigs, it’s all experimental. You know it worked. We’re just trying to see how we can make use of all the Cadets players,” said head coach Jong Uichico. The Gilas Cadets went off to a good start to take control of the match early before closing it out with stronger finish. Cedric Pelayo and Eric Jabel scored 14 each while Lawrence Victoria and Daniel Aguirre posted 12 and 11 markers, respectively, for the 3-3 Cardinals. Meanwhile, the Red Lions banked on their crucial defensive stops by Donald Tankoua and the steady hands of Javee Mocon at the foul line in the last 50 seconds of the game to put a dent on De La Salle University's erswhile unbeaten record, 72-70, in the night cap. Mocon finished with 20 points while Tankoua had nine markers for SBU, which improved to 3-2 slate. Mocon broke a 68-68 deadlock with 48.8 seconds remaining with three free throws off a foul from Kira Samuel, who tied the game in the previous play. Tankoua made two defensive stops in the Green Archers' possesion - a block oon Samuel and a steal off an inbound pass.  Tankoua split his free throws with 21.5 ticks left to give the Red Lions a four-point cushion. DLSU saw its six-game winning streak snapped. Andrei Caracut finished with 20 points while Justine Baltazar and Samuel had 13 each for the Green Archers.              Box score: GILAS (97) –- Bolick 13, Paras 12, Rike 11, Nieto 9, Ravena 8, Tuffin 8, Tamayo 6, Alejandro 5, Sotto 5, Gozum 5, Tratter 4, Go 4, Tolentino 4, Mocon 3, Tolentino Vi 0. MAPUA (78) –- Pelayo 14, Jabel 14, Victoria 12, Aguirre 11, Lugo 9, Biteng 6, Bonifacio 5, Bunag 5, Gamboa 2, Nocum 0, Pajarillo 0, Serrano 0. Quarter scores: 25-21, 49-38, 72-64, 97-78.   SAN BEDA (72) -- Mocon 20, Tankoua 9, Eugene 8, Carino 8, Nelle 7, Tongco 6, Bolick 4, Soberano 4, Presbitero 2, Bahio 2, Cuntapay 2, Abuda 0, Doliguez 0, Cabanag 0. DLSU (70) -- Caracut 20, Baltazar 13, Samuel 13, Melecio 8, Santillan 6, Lim 6, Manaytay 2, Corteza 2, Go 0, Bates 0, Tolentino 0, Capacio 0, Dyke 0, Manuel 0. Quarter scores: 14-16, 37-30, 55-55, 72-70.   ---   Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 4th, 2018

Lady Falcons collect third win in a row, remain unblemished

Adamson University kept its perfect record intact as the Lady Falcons easily picked their third win in as many outings with a 25-12, 25-14, 25-13 demolition of Technological Institute of the Philippines in Group B of the  inaugural Premier Volleyball League Collegiate Conference. The Lady Falcons solidified their hold of top spot and moved a step closer to clinching a semifinals berth. Jema Galanza pounded 11 attacks, nailed six aces and  a kill block for 18 points in an all-around performance that saw her also contribute 11 digs and five excellent receptions on defense for the San Marcelino-based squad. Joy Dacoron added 12 points while Fenela Emnas chipped in 23 excellent sets in Adamson's 44 attack points.    It was a quick stint for Adamson inside the FilOil Flying V Centre as the smaller Lady Engineers were no match against the rampaging Lady Falcons, who still have College of St. Benilde and San Beda College remaining in their elimination round assignments. TIP dropped to 0-3 mark and was pushed on the brink of elimination. Alyssa Layug scored eight points while Ashley Jinon had seven for the Lady Engineers, who only had 19 points off attacks.   ---       Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 16th, 2017

Blue Eagles out to clinch a semis spot

Undefeated Ateneo de Manila University aims for the first semifinals spot against University of the Philippines on Saturday in the men’s division of the inaugural Premier Volleyball League Collegiate Conference at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. Game time is at 10:00 a.m. Sporting a 4-0 win-loss record, the Blue Eagles are just a victory away from clinching a spot in the best-of-three semis. Behind the consistent game of four-time UAAP Most Valuable Player Marck Espejo, who is averaging 19 points per game, the Blue Eagles are on the right track of annexing another crown in a Sports Vision-organizeed tournament after claiming the now defunct V-League’s last two Collegiate Conference titles – all in clean sweep.  The three-time UAAP champion Ateneo is coming off a 25-13, 25-22, 25-22, demolition of reigning NCAA titlist College of St. Benilde last Wednesday. Espejo led the way with 17 points while Ishmael Rivera had nine markers. The duo are expected to deliver once again against the Fighting Maroons. UP is in a three-way tie at 1-2 slate with San Beda College and National University. The Maroons were turned back by the Red Spikers, 22-25, 22-25, 19-25 on Monday. Meanwhile, San Beda College faces De La Salle University (2-2) at 8:00 a.m.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 15th, 2017

Lady Chiefs blast Red Spikers, advance to NCAA volley final

Arellano University made sure it will not be denied a finals berth for the second time as it downed nemesis San Beda and hacked out a vengeful 25-18, 25-21, 25-23 victory yesterday to claim a spot in the championship round in the women’s division of the 94th NCAA volleyball tournament at the Filoil Flying V Center in San Juan......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJan 22nd, 2019

NCAA Season 94 volleyball: San Beda denies Arellano U an outright Finals seat

No sweep. San Beda University denied two-time defending champion Arellano University an outright Finals berth after the Lady Red Spikers snapped the Lady Chiefs’ eight-game winning run, 16-25, 25-17, 25-19, 18-25, 16-14, Tuesday in the NCAA Season 94 women’s volleyball competition at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. The Lady Red Spikers stopped the Lady Chiefs right on their tracks to close the elimination round in a three-way tie at 8-1 win-loss record with their victims and College of St. Benilde. San Beda’s win put the semifinals in the usual Final Four format with the Lady Blazers and Arellano U taking the top two seeds and twice-to-beat incentives. The Lady Red Spikers will take on the Lady Chiefs in the Final Four starting Tuesday. CSB, which by virtue of superior quotient took the top seed, will still have to wait for its semis opponent between University of Perpetual Help (5-3) and Jose Rizal University (4-4). “Malaki sa amin ito kasi pampa-boost din ng morale para sa mga bata. Nakita namin na yung pinaghihirapan namin may resulta na maganda,” said San Beda coach Nemesio Gavino of the win in the rematch of last year' championship series. The Lady Red Spikers saved a match point off a block by Satrianni Espiritu on Necole Ebuen for a 14-14 tie. Jeziela Viray scored on another kill block before Nieza Viray sealed the crucial Lady Red Spikers win with an off the block. Nieza Viray finished with 17 points with all but 16 coming off attacks and 19 digs while skipper Cesca Racraquin posted 16 markers, 15 digs and 10 excellent receptions for an all-around play for San Beda. The Lady Red Spikers recovered from a 0-3 hole in the fifth set and even took a 13-12 lead off a net touch by Arellano U opposite hitter Regine Arocha. Princess Bello tied it at 13 before Ebuen scored on a crosscourt hit to put the Lady Chiefs at match point.       Ebuen saw her 23-point effort go down the drain while Bello and Arocha got 12 and 10, respectively, for Arellano U. Meanwhile, the Chiefs sealed the third seed in the semifinals after beating the Red Spikers, 17-25, 25-22, 25-16, 25-16, in men’s play. Jesrael Liberato and Christian Segovia finished with 18 and 16 points, respectively, for Arellano U, who finished their elimination round campaign with a 7-2 card. Christian Dela Paz added 11 markers for the Chiefs. Skipper Angelo Torres got 13 markers in his swan song for San Beda, which closed their emotional elims campaign at 2-7 just three days after the passing of Red Spikers head coach Nes Pamilar. In the juniors division, Arellano U defeated San Beda, 25-15, 25-21, 23-25, 25-19, to close the elims in a three-way tie at fourth spot. The Braves sealed their season with a 5-4 record tied with College of St. Benilde-LSGH and Emilio Aguinaldo College. The Brigadiers by virtue of superior quotient occupied the semis no. 4 berth. The Red Cubs finished their campaign winless in nine outings.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 15th, 2019

NCAA Season 94 volleyball: Para sa pride natin ito, San Beda tayo -- Racraquin

Even before stepping inside the court of the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan Tuesday against defending two-time champion Arellano University, San Beda University was already in a difficult situation. Win or lose, the Lady Red Spikers were already locked in a handicapped spot at third seed whether the NCAA Season 94 women’s volleyball competition goes on a Final Four or a stepladder semis format. If San Beda wins there will be a Final Four and they will still face the twice-to-beat Lady Chiefs. If Arellano U prevails, the Lady Chiefs will need to win in the first phase of the stepladder semis for the right to take on College of St. Benilde for the last Finals seat. Either way, San Beda was at a disadvantage. “Sa totoo lang sa team namin parang napa-isip kami kung ano bang mas maganda? Pilitin namin manalo or bigay na lang namin ‘yung game kasi parang pareho lang naman,” said skipper Cesca Racraquin. The Lady Red Spikes chose to protect their pride. “Pero sabi namin, hindi, para sa atin din ‘to. Para sa pride natin ‘to, San Beda tayo e,” Racraquin said. San Beda snapped the Lady Chiefs’ eight-game winning streak with a hard-earned 16-25, 25-17, 25-19, 18-25, 16-14, victory that force a three-way tie at 8-1 win-loss record tied with its victim and CSB. The Lady Blazers end up as the top seeds in the Final Four by virtue of superior quotient. San Beda’s win didn’t change the fact that the Mendiola-based squad still need to beat the Lady Chiefs twice in the Final Four. But for the Lady Red Spikers, it was the morale-boost they need to have heading into the semis Tuesday. “Malaki sa amin ito kasi pampa-boost din ng morale para sa mga bata. Nakita namin na yung pinaghihirapan namin may resulta na maganda,” said San Beda coach Nemesio Gavino, whose squad won all of its three five-set games in the elims. The Lady Red Spikers recovered from a 0-3 hole in the fifth set and even took a 13-12 lead off a net touch by Arellano U opposite hitter Regine Arocha. Princess Bello tied it at 13 before Necole Ebuen scored on a crosscourt hit to put the Lady Chiefs at match point.      The Lady Red Spikers saved a match point off a block by Satrianni Espiritu on Ebuen for a 14-14 tie. Jeziela Viray scored on another kill block before Nieza Viray sealed the crucial Lady Red Spikers win with an off the block hit. CSB will face in the semis the winner between Jose Rizal University and University of Perpetual Help on Thursday.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 15th, 2019

NCAA Season 94 volleyball: SSC-R, Perpetual dispute at least last semis spot playoff

San Sebastian College and University of Perpetual Help battle for at least a playoff for the last semifinals berth Monday in the NCAA Season 94 women’s volleyball tournament at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. Both teams put their Final Four hopes on the line when they meet inside the court at 12:00 noon. The match will air via livestream. The Lady Stags march into their final elimination round match hoping to avoid missing the Final Four for the second straight season. A series of misfortunes that pushed SSC-R outside of the top four with a 4-4 win-loss record tied with Jose Rizal University at fifth to sixth. The Lady Stags are on a three-game losing skid after a 4-1 start. SSC-R has yet to win a match this year. Another defeat coupled by the Lady Altas’ win against the Lady Bombers on Thursday will send the Lady Stags into an early vacation. In case SSC-R drops its last match and Perpetual also loses to JRU for a three-way 5-4 card there will be a playoff to determine who will advance in the semis. In this scenario, the teams with the lowest tiebreak will faceoff in a winner-take-all match for the right to face the squad with the highest quotient.   Meanwhile, College of St. Benilde shoots for at least a playoff for the no. 2 spot in the semifinals at 2:00 p.m. gainst Mapua University. The Lady Blazers are in a seven-game winning streak and are tied at second to third with San Beda University with 7-1 slate behind unbeaten defending two-time champion Arellano University (8-0). The Lady Cardinals hold a 1-7 mark.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles    .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 14th, 2019

NCAA Season 94: Lady Blazers collect seventh straight win

Before the start of NCAA Season 94 women's volleyball competition, College of St. Benilde head coach Jerry Yee laid out the team's goals and expectations. The Lady Blazers responded with one of the best seasons for the Taft-based squad since its title romp three years ago. CSB collected its seventh straight win in eight outings Friday at the expense of skidding San Sebastian College, 25-17, 25-16, 25-14, at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. The Lady Blazers moved up to a share of the second to third spot with idle San Beda University behind unbeaten defending two-time champion Arellano University (8-0). "Nag-usap kami ng mabuti. Yung expectations, nai-set natin, yung goals natin ni-lay natin sa table, kung anong kailangan kung kaya nila o hindi. Willing naman yung mga bata to sacrifice. So far it's working. Pero marami pang tatabrahuin like consistency," said Yee, whose squad will close the elimination round on Monday against Mapua University. Rachel Austero scored 13 points anchored on 10 attacks, two kill blocks and an ace to lead the Lady Blazers. Klarissa Abriam had 11 markers while Chelsea Umali posted eight points for CSB. The Lady Blazers are very much in the running for the no. 2 spot and a twice-to-beat advantage in a Final Four format.  In case Arellano U completes an elims sweep against San Beda coupled by CSBs win over Mapua, the Lady Blazers will occupy the no. 2 spot and will await the survivor between the no. 3 and no. 4 seeds in the knockout stepladder semifinals. The Lady Stags, on the other hand, were pushed on the brink of missing the semis for the second straight year after absorbing their third straight defeat. SSC-R fell to 4-4 card at fifth to sixth spot tied with Jose Rizal University.  Maryrhose Dapol and Joyce Sta. Rita scored eight points each for the Lady Stags, who will need to win against University of Perpetual Help on Monday and hope that the Lady Altas lose to the Lady Bombers on Thursday to force a playoff for the last semis seat. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 11th, 2019

NCAA Season 94 volleyball: Lady Chiefs clinch first semis seat

Defending champion Arellano University punched the first Final Four ticket after a quick work of winless Emilio Aguinaldo College, 25-19, 25-11, 25-8, Monday in the NCAA Season 94 women’s volleyball competition at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. It took the Lady Chiefs only 63 minutes to notch their seventh win in as many outings to keep their tight hold of the lead and more importantly secure a spot in the semifinals. Despite coming off a long holiday break, Arellano U showed no signs of rust. Head coach Obet Javier had a chance to experiment with his rotation, giving all of his wards playing time.  "Ni-remind ko lang yung mga bata kung ano yung target namin para sa game na ito. Siyempre, gusto naming itaas yung morale namin lalo," said Javier, whose squad advanced in their seventh straight semifinals apperance. Regine Arocha showed the kind of form expected from her in the Lady Chiefs final push in the elimination round as the hitter unleashed 14 points built on nine spikes, four aces and a kill block. Arocha, who struggled early in the season, added 11 digs. Last year’s rookie of the year Necole Ebuen got nine markers while Princess Bello finished with seven for Arellano U, who can march outright in the best-of-three Finals with wins over its last two games against University of Perpetual Help on Thursday and San Beda University on Tuesday. The Lady Chiefs handed the Lady Generals their eighth consecutive defeat. Jaylene Lumbo scored nine points for EAC, which will close the season on Friday against Lyceum of the Philippines University. Meanwhile, Arellano U secured at least a playoff for a Final Four spot in the men’s division after defeating EAC in five sets, 25-13, 25-18, 27-29, 16-25, 16-14, for a 6-1 slate at solo second spot. Christian Dela Paz led the Chiefs with 16 points while Kim Vincent Tan and Jesrael Liberato got 14 and 13 markers, respectively. Joshua Mina and Joshua Ramilo blasted 23 and 22 points, respectively, in a lost cause for the Generals, who fell to 5-3 card. In the juniors division, the Brigadiers upset the Braves, 25-14, 25-20, 25-19, to improve to 3-5 card. Arellano U slid to 4-3 slate.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 7th, 2019

NCAA Season 94 volleyball: San Beda secures at least a semis seat playoff

San Beda University got back on the winning track after crushing skidding Letran, 25-18, 25-14, 25-13, Friday to secure at least a playoff for a semifinals spot in the NCAA Season 94 women’s volleyball competition  at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. The Lady Red Spikers recovered from a four-set defeat at the hands of College of St. Benilde before the long holiday break to keep its hold of the solo second spot with 6-1 win-loss record behind league-leading and unbeaten defending champion Arellano University (6-0). Nieza Viray led the way for last year’s runner-up San Beda with 17 points coming off 14 kills, two aces and a kill block while twin sister Jeziela Viray got 11 markers. Skipper Cesca Racraquin finished with nine points, 11 digs and seven excellent receptions in the Lady Red Spikers’ 72-minute victory. “At least ito naman confidence-booster matapos namin matalo di ba? At least naka-recover na ang teammates ko saka ako. Work hard lang and saka dapat mas mag-aim ng higher. Hindi yung kuntento lang kami sa kung ano ang narating namin last year kailangan mas mataas ang goal namin this year,” said Racraquin.       The Lady Red Spikers’ will try to formally secure a Final Four seat on Tuesday against San Sebastian College before their Finals rematch against the Lady Chiefs on January 15. Miracle Mhae Mendoza scored eight points while Chamnerlaine Cunada had six for the Lady Knights, who fell to their sixth straight defeat for a 1-6 slate.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 4th, 2019

10 can’t-miss moments in sports for 2019

2018 is already in the books. Now, we look forward to the next chapters we’re all about to read in 2019. Laban Azkals in AFC Asian Cup – January The Azkals will enter historic grounds as early as January as they play for the first time in the AFC Asian Cup in 2019. Their ticket was booked after crushing Tajikistan in a 2-1 home victory early in 2018. With a world-renowned mentored on their side in Sven-Goran Eriksson and veteran national players, the Azkals will travel to the United Arab Emirates for the continental showdown. The Azkals kick off their 2019 AFC Cup Campaign on January 7th against South Korea, followed by a match against China PR on January 11th, before closing out the Group Stage on January 16th against Kyrgyzstan.  Newest season of the oldest professional league in Asia – January After just roughly a month of break from basketball action, the oldest professional league in Asia is back. The PBA will be kicking off its 44th season on January 13 with San Miguel defending its Philippine Cup title. Aside from that, marquee rookies such as CJ Perez, Robert Bolick, and Paul Desiderio are all set to play their first professional games with their respective teams. Up next on Pacman’s list – January The Filipinos will be treated to quality boxing as early as January 19 when Manny Pacquiao defends his WBA (Regular) Welterweight World Championship against challenger American Adrien Broner. After two years of fighting outside the US, Pacquiao will be back in Las Vegas to defend his title against a tough challenger in Broner. Just like old times, Freddie Roach will be back in Pacquiao's corner, this time serving as a consultant. Fanning the flames for a place in FIBA World Cup 2019 – February For the Philippines to be back in the FIBA World Cup, these are the things that need to happen: we must sweep out last two games then Japan must lose at least one of its last two games – giving us the third spot in Group F. Alternatively, we can pin our hopes on China winding up in the top four of its group – giving Groups E and F four berths apiece. Gilas Pilipinas begins its trek through that long and winding road away from home up against Qatar. All teams are teams-to-beat in UAAP 81 Volleyball – February The exciting and highly entertaining collegiate volleyball league is back on February 16. Things to watch out for? La Salle's bid for their fourth consecutive title, Ateneo's face post-Tai Bundit era, UP's confident aura coming off two major preseason championships, and UST's game-changing rookies. Eaglets-Bullpups Finals rematch or not – March Without a doubt, Ateneo and NU, the very same two teams that battled in the Finals last year, are the favorites to go all the way back to the champipnship round in the ongoing season. After all, the Blue Eaglets still have 7-foot-1, 16-year-old Kai Sotto and the Bullpups boast of the deepest roster in all of high school. After the first round of eliminations, however, it’s also clear that RJ Abarrientos-led FEU-Diliman and Joem Sabandal-fronted Adamson have other plans. For sure, something’s gotta give. Alab Pilipinas’ shot at history – April In the almost decade-long history of the Asean Basketball League, no team has won back-to-back championships. Alab Pilipinas is here to change that with the Puerto Rican pair of Renaldo Balkman and PJ Ramos showing the way alongside two-time Local MVP Ray Parks Jr. No doubt, this is the most talented team in franchise history and as such, nothing but a second straight title will be an acceptable outcome. The NCAA is five years away from its centennial celebration – July The first collegiate league in the country is approaching rarified air. Set to open its milestone mark 95th Season, the same old intensity is to be expected in the NCAA. The protagonists, however, may very well be different as all of last year’s Final Four teams will now be missing their main men – Robert Bolick for San Beda, CJ Perez for LPU, Bong Quinto for Letran, and Prince Eze for Perpetual. Is the UAAP 82 Basketball crown Katipunan’s to keep – September In Season 82, all teams will be seeking to nip the dynasty that the Ateneo Blue Eagles are trying to build. After going for back-two-back last season, all eyes will still be on them as their enter the season with an intact core. However, just like Season 81 it will not be a walk in the park with all contenders striving to match their caliber through massive recruitment, coach changes, and tough training camps. Filipino hospitality in SEA Games 2019 – November For the first time since 2005, the SEA Games will be played in Manila. That means that, at long last, our regional neighbors will yet again experience that world-renowned warmth of the Philippines and its people. Make no mistake, however, the Filipinos are all set to go all-out and dominate the medal tally – whether that be basketball in Manila or athletics and aquatics in Clark......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 31st, 2018

Top sports headliners in the year that was

From the FIFA World Cup to the NBA, the PBA to the UAAP and NCAA, the Asian Games to Manny Pacquiao, volleyball to MMA, the past 12 months truly was a great year for Filipino sports fans.   Here are some of the most memorable sports headliners that bannered the year that was.    San Miguel Corporation dominates PBA San Miguel Corporation owned 2018. For the first time in the history of the Asia’s first professional basketball league one company dominated all three conferences of the PBA. The San Miguel Beermen annexed their fourth straight Philippine Cup title against sister team Magnolia last May, while Ginebra rode on undersized do-it-all forward Justin Brownlee to the Commissioner's Cup title at the expense of San Miguel last August. Then it was Magnolia's time to shine in December. The Hotshots dismantled Alaska in six games to complete SMC’s domination of PBA 2018. Outside of basketball, SMC also made its presence felt in volleyball as Petron bagged the Grand Prix, Challenge Cup (beach volleyball) and the All-Filipino Conference in the Philippine Superliga.   Kai Sotto stands tall as Ateneo takes title vs NU Kai Sotto became a household name in 2018 as the 7'1" wunderkind showed off in the UAAP Season 80 juniors' basketball tournament. The eventual Finals MVP was a beast in Game 1 of the Finals against the NU Bullpups, tallying a triple-double of 22 points, 16 rebounds, and 11 blocks in the 86-70 win, the first of its kind since 2003. Ateneo finished the season almost unscathed at 16-1, with their lone loss in Game 2 of the series, a very chippy one to say the least. In Game 3, Sotto came up clutch, scoring the go-ahead basket, 60-58, with about 30 seconds left as Ateneo came away with the 63-58 win to take the title.  SJ Belangel, Joaqui Manuel, Dave Ildefonso and Jason Credo, and coach Joe Silva all appeared in their last games for the Blue Eaglets.   DLSU completes three-peat; NU dethrones Ateneo  The UAAP Season 80 volleyball tournament was filled with lasting memories that will surely be remembered for a long time. Numerous upsets in the eliminations, great games, and much more were the name of the game for the women's tournament. However, a long-time rivalry was rekindled when two-time defending champs De La Salle Lady Spikers met 29-time title holders FEU Lady Tamaraws for all the marbles last May. Kim Kianna Dy, Majoy Baron, and Dawn Macandili all ended their careers on a high note as they swept graduating Bernadeth Pons and the Lady Tamaraws in two straight games to win their third straight title. Graduating libero Macandili was named Finals MVP for the first and final time in her collegiate career.  Behind their magnificent floor defense and some stellar play from Finals MVP Bryan Bagunas, the NU Bulldogs also swept three-time defending champions Ateneo Blue Eagles to reclaim a title they last enjoyed in Season 76. Espejo, a five-time UAAP MVP, had an awesome performance for the world's record books, scoring a record-55 points to force the FEU Tamaraws to a do-or-die Final Four. The Blue Eagle legend had played his last, and has since suited up for a semi-pro team in Japan's topflight volleyball league.   Alab fends off Mono Vampire to claim ABL title San Miguel-backed Alab Pilipinas were such a glorious sight to see in the eighth season of the Asean Basketball League (ABL) last March. Coached by perennial fan favorite Jimmy Alapag in his very first season, the trio of Renaldo Balkman, Justin Brownlee, and Local and Finals MVP Bobby Ray Parks to their first title in home soil. Alab faced Thailand-based Mono Vampire, who were led by Mike Singletary, towering Sam Deguara, Fil-Am Jason Brickman and Pinoy Paul Zamar. In the very same day as the coronation of the UAAP volleyball championships, Alab took home the crown in a rousing 102-92 victory in Sta. Rosa, much to the delight of the home crowd. Balkman, the league's Defensive Player of the Year led Alab in scoring with 32, while Brownlee added 24 of his own. Parks added 13 markers. The two imports played in the PBA for the Commissioner's Cup, where Balkman (San Miguel) and Brownlee (Ginebra) would face each other in the Finals.   (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio) Warriors send LeBron packing to Los Angeles The Golden St. Warriors and the Cleveland Cavaliers locked horns in the NBA Finals for the fourth straight season after the two teams were pushed to the brink in the Conference Finals. Both teams were down 3-2 and won Game 7 on the road to win their respective conferences, with both teams banking on experience to forge another bout in the championship series. Game 1 was undoubtedly the most exciting game in the series as LeBron James had an epic performance of 51 points, 8 rebounds, and 8 assists.  However, JR Smith's blunder at the end of regulation became the lasting image of that game, as he dribbled out the clock with the score tied at 107-all. The defending champions rode the surge and took the opening game, 124-114. Stephen Curry's brillant performance throughout the series was overshadowed by Kevin Durant's dagger in Game 3, a few feet away from the spot where he launched the go-ahead three in Game 3 of the 2017 NBA Finals. Durant was named as the Bill Russell Finals MVP after norming 28.8 ppg, 10.8 rpg, and 7.5 apg in the four-game sweep, demolishing the Cavs 108-85 in the series finale last June. It would also be the last game LeBron James had in a Cleveland Cavaliers uniform, as he bolted for the Los Angeles Lakers almost a month later.   (AP Photo/Martin Meissner) France rules 2018 FIFA World Cup The most-coveted title of the beautiful game returned to France after two decades. The youthful French squad celebrated their conquest soaked in a downpour in Moscow after a 4-2 victory over first-time finalist Croatia in the 2018 FIFA World Cup last July. Teenager Kylian Mbappe stood out in the French team composed of a bunch of 25 and under players. Speed, strength and youth became France’s biggest asset during the quadrennial football spectacle watched by almost 3.5 billion viewers around the world.  The 19-year-old migrant scored one of the four goals in the championship match to become the second teen to score a goal in the Finals after the legendary Pele back in 1958. France defeated Belgium in the semifinal, 1-0, while Croatia outlasted the favored Russians in penalty shootout, 4-3 (2-2). The French team also displayed diversity, with players born of migrant parents including Alphonse Areola, whose parents are both Filipinos working in France.   Pac on top, The Filipino Flash returns The most-celebrated Filipino athlete continued make the headlines this year. Manny Pacquaio stripped Lucas Matthysse of his WBA welterweight world championship belt with a seventh round technical knockout win in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in July. Pacquiao split with long-time trainer Freddie Roach during his build up for the Matthysse bout back in April but confirmed their partnership once again for the 40-year old boxer’s title defense against Adrien Broner next year. Nonito Donaire Jr. announced that he would be going back down to super bantamweight after a loss to Carl Frampton in April for the interim WBO Featherweight belt and would be taking part in the World Boxing Super Series' super bantamweight tournament.  Matched up in the quarterfinal round against Ryan Burnett back in November, Donaire scored what many consider an upset, winning via TKO after the Irishman suffered a back injury to snatch the WBA (Super) Bantamweight World Championship.  Up next for Donaire will be WBO Super Bantamweight World Champion Zolani Tete of South Africa in the semifinals.           Pinay power in the Asian Games   The Philippines participated in the 18th Asian Games held in Jakarta and Palembang, Indonesia that ran from August 18 to September 2. A total of 272 athletes that participated in 31 sports represented the country in the quadrennial meet with Jordan Clarkson of the Cleveland Cavaliers and medalist Margielyn Didal marching as flagbearers in the opening and closing ceremonies, respectively. Rio Olympian Hidilyn Diaz gave the PHI its first gold medal in women’s -53 kg. weightlifting. Five days after Diaz’s victory, the trio of Yuka Saso, Bianca Pagdanganan and Lois Kaye Go accounted for the women’s golf team mint. Saso also bagged the individual gold. In Palembang, Didal rolled her way into winning the women’s street skateboard gold. The celebrated men’s basketball team started out strong after routing Kazakhstan but lost by two-points to China in the group stage. The Gilas Pilipinas squad advanced in the quarterfinals but bowed down to South Korea by nine points eventually settling for a fifth spot in the classification phase after wins over Japan and Syria. The PHI finished with a 4-2-15 gold-silver-bronze haul and landed at 19th spot, three places higher that its 2014 finish in Incheon, South Korea.      Red Lions roar, Blue Eagles soar San Beda University continued its mastery over the NCAA as it annexed its third straight title and 22nd overall. The Red Lions grabbed its 11th crown in 13 years at the expense of Lyceum of the Philippines University. It was one-sided championship series – just like in their Finals meeting last year – with the San Beda ripping the Pirates apart in Game One with LPU playing sans its best player in CJ Perez, who was banned for one game after failing to notify the league of his intention to join the PBA Draft. Perez returned in Game 2 but even his presence didn’t stop the Red Lions from painting the NCAA red once again. In probably one of the most memorable UAAP season in recent years, Ateneo de Manila University won its second straight crown. Ivorian tower and Rookie of the Year 6-foot-11 Ange Kouame made an immediate impact for the Blue Eagles complementing the already stacked Ateneo squad led by Finals MVP Thirdy Ravena. But the glory of Ateneo was overshadowed by the Cinderalla story of the team it vanquished in the Finals. Climbing up from the cellar in the past years, University of the Philippines made history by making it in the Finals for the first time since winning it all in 1986. But before their championship stint, the Fighting Maroons ended a two-decade Final Four drought. UP then shocked twice-to-beat Adamson University with both games decided by game-winners. Ateneo came in the series as the title favorites but overwhelming support from a very hungry UP community and underdogs fans backed the Fighting Maroons. But in the end, it was the Blue Eagles championship experience that prevailed.       Pinoys make wave in MMA Fighters under Team Lakay flexed their muscles in One Championship. Flyweight star Geje Eustaquio opened the year with an interim championship win over former champion Kairat Akhmetov in Manila back in January. Eustaquio then defeated two-time champion Adriano Moraes in Macau last July to become the undisputed ONE Flyweight World Champion.  Joshua Pacio earned the ONE Strawweight World Championship last September after a unanimous decision win over two-time champion Japanese Yoshitaka Naito. Kevin Belingon dropped former world title challenger Andrew Leone with a now-famous spinning back kick in April. He followed it up with a dominating win over then-two division world champion Martin Nguyen to capture the ONE Interim Bantamweight World Champion. Belingon ended the five-year reign and seven-year winning streak of of long-time bantamweight king Brazilian Bibiano Fernandes in November via split decision.  Eduard Folayang outclassed Singaporean contender Amir Khan at ONE: Conquest of Champions in Manila in early December to bag the ONE Lightweight World Championship for the second time in his storied career.  BRAVE Combat Federation Bantamweight World Champion Stephen Loman successfully defended his title twice in 2018.  Reigning ONE Heavyweight World Champion Brandon Vera needed only 64 seconds to knockout hard-hitting Italian challenger Mauro Cerilli in Manila early December to remain the king of the ONE Championship heavyweight kingdom.    Petron, Creamline rule respective club leagues Creamline claimed its breakthrough championship in the Premier Volleyball League by sweeping PayMaya in the Reinforced Conference Finals series last July. Alyssa Valdez finally ended a two-year title drought with the Cool Smashers' victory. Creamline opposite hitter Michele Gumabao was named Miss Globe-Philippines during the Binibining Pilipinas 2018 last March. Gumabao represented the country in the 2018 Miss Globe in Albania last October and won the Miss Social Media and Dream Girl awards while landing a spot in the Top 15.     The Cool Smashers completed a sweep of the PVL’s Season 2 after claiming the Open Conference crown at the expense of Ateneo-Motolite via an emphatic series sweep this month. In the Philippine Superliga, Petron reigned supreme in the Grand Prix after taking down archrival F2 Logistics last May. Petron extended its supremacy in the sands after the tandem of Sisi Rondina and Bernadethn Pons defeated Dhannylaine Demontano and Jackielyn Estoquia of Sta. Lucia in the Challenge Cup final last May. The Cargo Movers got its revenge in the Invitational Cup, toppling the Blaze Spikers in a series sweep last July. Petron wrapped the year with the All-Filipino Conference in its pocket. The Blaze Spikers won its first 14 games before dropping Game 2 of the Finals. Petron swept F2 Logistics in Game 3......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 30th, 2018

Reasons to watch 2018 slate of NBA X mas day games

By Sekou Smith, NBA.com Bucks vs. Knicks (1am, PHL time) Why you should be watching: Two words; Giannis Antetokounmpo. The most dominant force in the league this season resides in Milwaukee. That’s right, the Greek Freak sits atop the Kia Race to the MVP Ladder heading into the Christmas Day showcase games. And with good reason. The Bucks are riding the wave their dynamic superstar forward has created in his first season in Mike Budenholzer’s system. Open it up and enjoy because … The Bucks are more than a one-man show. Antetokounmpo should be joined on the All-Star team this season by Khris Middleton, who is playing at that level, and point guard Eric Bledsoe is shooting better than he ever has in Budenolzer’s aggressive, shooter-friendly system. Watching the Bucks try and set a record for three-pointers taken and made should be entertaining enough. But the Knicks will offer some entertainment value of their own as they attempt to match the Bucks shot-for-shot with Tim Hardaway Jr. leading the way. The gift we’re hoping for is … The Knicks could use a statement win before a global audience to jump start the post-Christmas portion of their season-long grind. The Bucks have spent most of this season frightening the competition, both in the Eastern Conference and beyond. They’ve got the gift that’ll keep on giving for years in Antetokounmpo, who’ll get another chance to show the basketball public that what they’ve hard about a contender rising in the Central Division is real. Thunder vs. Rockets (4am, PHL time) Why you should be watching: Do we really need anyone to remind us to tune in for every Russell Westbrook-James Harden matchup for the foreseeable future? Didn’t think so. The matchup of the last two Kia MVPs winners is enough of an incentive to lock in on this one. And the fact that the Thunder occupy the space in the standings most thought was reserved for the Rockets only adds to the intrigue. Open it up and enjoy because … The real showstopper in this one isn’t either one of the MVP winners. Thunder swingman Paul George is the player you need to lock in on as he continues his dark horse MVP campaign for a much-improved team (the Thunder are light years away from the group that started the season 0-4). There are few soap operas better right now than the Rockets, who are dealing with yet another injury to All-Star point guard Chris Paul (hamstring) and a failure to play up to expectations that threatens to swallow up their season before Santa’s finished off his cookies and milk. The gift we’re hoping for is … What Westbrook and Harden wear into the building is worth a few moments of your time as these two fashion-forward superstars never fail to make an impression. But it’s the competitive fervor on the court that should provide the ultimate viewing pleasure. The Thunder would love to take over the position the Rockets held last season, as the legitimate threat to the Golden State Warriors’ stranglehold on the Western Conference throne. In the absence of a Christmas tilt against the two-time defending champs, the Rockets make an ideal fill in. Sixers vs. Celtics (6:30am, PHL time) Why you should be watching: The Eastern Conference version of Thunder-Rockets, the schedule makers look pretty good slotting the Sixers and Celtics in this spot. No one relishes an opportunity to take down a projected heavyweight the way the Sixers do (what else would you expect with Jimmy Butler and Joel Embiid leading the charge?). The suddenly chummy Celtics, however, appear to be the team most eager to prove that they are indeed who we all thought they were in the summer, when they were the consensus pick to ascend to the top of the heap in place of Cleveland. Open it up and enjoy because … Kyrie Irving has embraced his role as the leader of this disjointed Celtics bunch in ways that fans in Cleveland have to be enjoying with an eyebrow raised. Kyrie trying to convince his young teammates to follow his lead is rich, given his reluctance to do exactly that when he was in their shoes. As far as rivalries go, this is perhaps the day’s deepest and most volatile. The Sixers are still smarting from that playoff ouster at the hands of the Celtics. And they won’t have ant sympathy for the Celtics as they continue their search for good health and better chemistry. The gift we’re hoping for is … A Ben Simmons-Kyrie point guard duel will make this game shine even brighter than usual. And they’re both more than capable of going off on the big stage. But the real treat here is going to be watching Jimmy Butler and Jayson Tatum match wits in what could be a preview of fireworks to come in a potential playoff matchup. Tatum’s sophomore season has been a bit choppier than expected. And Butler, whose shown a penchant for schooling youngsters (teammates and opponents) is surely betting on himself in this game within the game. Lakers vs. Warriors (9am, PHL time) Why you should be watching: With all of the recent history dripping off of this LeBron James-Warriors rivalry, the inclusion of the Los Angeles Lakers into the mix only serves to take this spectacle to the next level. LeBron insists this isn’t a measuring stick game for the upstart Lakers, not against a Warriors juggernaut that has won three of the last four Larry O’Brien trophies. Yeah, whatever you say big fella. Folks who haven’t watched a minute of NBA basketball season will be tuned into this one. Count on it. Open it up and enjoy because … Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant have moved into that cosmic zone that only the all-time greats are capable of locating (see their work in their Monday, PHL time win over the Los Angeles Clippers for proof). We already know how the superstars respond in a matchup of this nature. The great unknown is how the likes of Kyle Kuzma, Brandon Ingram and Lonzo Ball will react to the marquee spotlight at Oracle Arena. The Lakers’ youngsters have thrived at times and struggled at others in their first season inside the LeBron bubble. But they haven’t seen anything like what they’ll experience in Oakland on this night. The gift we’re hoping for is … Draymond Green hasn’t had a true breakout game since returning from his extended injury absence. With Lance Stephenson in uniform on the other side, the opportunity for fireworks would appear to be extremely high. We’d settle for some Finals-level intensity from both of the world class agitators in the building. That and vintage performances from LeBron, Steph, KD and Klay Thompson are expected. Anything else beyond that is really gravy on the best basketball meal of the day. Trail Blazers vs. Jazz (11:30am, PHL time) Why you should be watching: We’re dubbing the nightcap of the Christmas Day showcase the “Respect Bowl.” The Trail Blazers are always on the hunt for more respect and the Jazz, one of the trendy summer picks as a team poised to become a contender in the Western Conference this season, could stand to show a little self-respect in the way they tackle the remainder of this season. Open it up and enjoy because … Second-year Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell is suffering from the same sophomore spell that has plagued Jayson Tatum in Boston. It’s one thing to surprise the basketball world as a rookie and another to come back better and even more dangerous the second time around. We’re betting on Spider showing up and showing out for the Christmas Day crowd. Never one to shy away from a challenge, Damian Lillard will not allow someone else to steal the spotlight from him. He warmed up for Mitchell and the Jazz by finishing off Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks Sunday night. You know his swagger travels, so expect to see his competitive best against Mitchell and the Jazz. The gift we’re hoping for is … Joe Ingles stealing the show would make for an ideal end to a day full of some the league’s biggest and brightest superstars. And the sweet-shooting Jazz swingman is one of the league’s criminally underrated stars. It would also be nice to see the rest of that Jazz team we expected to make things interesting this season make an appearance. Christmas Day games have always served as a launching pad/turning point for teams willing to dive in. And the Blazers and Jazz both seem like prime candidates to take advantage of the opportunity. Sekou Smith is a veteran NBA reporter and NBA TV analyst. 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 NewsDec 25th, 2018

NCAA Season 94 volleyball: Lady Blazers get third straight win in 58 minutes

It only took 58 minutes for College of St. Benilde to seal its third straight win in the NCAA Season 94 women’s volleyball competition at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. Klarisa Abriam fired 14 of her 15 points on attacks to power the Lady Blazers to a swift, 25-11, 25-20, 25-13, submission of winless Emilio Aguinaldo College on Tuesday. CSB improved its record to 3-1 tied with San Sebastian College at third to fourth spot behind league-leading defending two-time champion Arellano University and San Beda University, who are both unbeaten in four games. Setter Jewel Lai displayed her playmaking prowess with 26 excellent sets that helped the Taft-based squad rain down 40 kills compared to the Lady Generals’ 18 attack points. Rachel Austero finished with nine points while Jan Daguil had eight markers in just two sets of action for the Lady Blazers, who will face a big challenge on Monday when CSB takes on the Lady Red Spikers. EAC remained at the cellar winless in four games tied with Mapua University. Jaylene Lumbo had eight points while Mariz Medina posted seven for the Lady Generals, who will go up against the Lady Stags on Friday.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles   .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 11th, 2018

NCAA Season 94: San Beda keeps share of lead

It only took 73 minutes for unbeaten San Beda University to take down Lyceum of the Philippines University, 25-21, 25-22, 25-16, and list its third straight win Monday in the NCAA Season 94 women's volleyball competition at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. The Lady Red Spikers, who finished runner-up last year, tightened their grip of the top spot they share with defending two-time champion Arellano University. Nieza Viray continued with her hot scoring streak after putting up another double-digit production with 19 points built on 16 attacks and three aces. Viray also displayed great floor defense with eight digs for the Mendiola-based squad. Cesca Racraquin added 13 points off 10 kills and three service winners while Sattriani Espiritu and Trisha Paras combined for 13 markers for the Lady Red Spikers, who punished the Lady Pirates with 42 kills and 10 aces. LPU slid to 1-2 card. No Lady Pirate scored in double figures with Mikaela Wanta scoring seven points while the veteran trio of Rocelyn Hongria and Bien Juanillo finishing with six each.   Meanwhile, the Pirates defeated the Red Spikers, 25-22, 25-23, 25-21, for their first win in three outings in men's play. Sinmart Saporna and Kier Tibayan led the way with 12 points each for LPU, which tied their victim. In the juniors division, the Red Cubs claimed their second straight win after clobbering the Junior Pirates,  26-24, 25-22, 30-28. LPU tasted defeat for the first time in three games. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 3rd, 2018

PSG aims to avoid early elimination in Champions League

By Tales Azzoni, Associated Press MADRID (AP) — Paris Saint-Germain's hopes of breaking through in European soccer could end earlier than usual this season. A loss against Liverpool on Wednesday in Paris, coupled with a home win by Napoli over Red Star, would keep PSG from making it out of the group stage in the Champions League. And that would be a significant setback for the big-spending French team desperately trying to assert itself as a world-class club. It would be the first time PSG failed to reach the tournament's knockout round since 2011-12, after Qatar Sports Investments took over the club with the goal of turning it into a top contender. PSG was eliminated in the round of 16 last season, after reaching the quarterfinals four straight years before that. Failure this time would hurt PSG in its second season since signing Brazil star Neymar for 222 million euros from Barcelona in an attempt to increase its chances of succeeding in Europe. PSG enters the crucial match at Parc des Princes with five points in Group C, one behind leaders Liverpool and Napoli. A victory would put the French club back in position to advance depending on its own results. "It's a decisive match in a very, very complicated group," PSG coach Thomas Tuchel told French broadcaster TF1. The good news for Tuchel is that Neymar and Kylian Mbappe, who had been sidelined because of injuries, are expected to be available for the home match against Liverpool. A look at the four Champions League groups on Wednesday: GROUP A Atletico Madrid and Borussia Dortmund lead the group and have a chance to secure places in the knockout round in advance. Dortmund needs a draw at Club Brugge, while Atletico needs a home win against Monaco. Atletico can also advance if Club Brugge loses points against Dortmund, which is coming off a blistering start to the season under new coach Lucien Favre. The only setback for Favre so far was the 2-0 loss at Atletico in the team's previous Champions League appearance. Paco Alcacer, signed on a permanent basis from Barcelona on Friday, scored again on Saturday in a win over Mainz, taking his league tally to nine goals in seven appearances. GROUP B Harry Kane kept Tottenham's Champions League hopes alive with a late double to sink PSV Eindhoven in the last round of games. Now the striker has some back-up as his team tries to complete an unlikely recovery to qualify from Group B. Tottenham has struggled for attacking fluency this season, mainly because attacking midfielders Christian Eriksen and Dele Alli have been missing at times because of injury. They appear to be fully fit now and were superb in Tottenham's win over Chelsea in the Premier League on Saturday, a 3-1 win that might have been its best display of the season. Spurs need to beat Inter Milan at Wembley Stadium on Wednesday to keep alive ambitions of a top-two finish. That would leave the teams tied on seven points. Tottenham would still likely require a win at already-qualified Barcelona to advance, given that Inter closes group play at home to last-place PSV. Barcelona, without Rafinha, Luis Suarez and Arthur because of injuries, has a three-point advantage at the top and will clinch first place in the group with a win over PSV, or a draw if Inter does not beat Tottenham. GROUP C Victories by Liverpool and Napoli would lock up the group which has proven to be the tightest of the Champions League. Napoli, the group's only unbeaten team with three draws and one win, hosts a Red Star team which still has chances of advancing in its return to the tournament's group stage after 26 years. The Serbian club has four points, one fewer than Paris Saint-Germain and two fewer than Napoli and Liverpool. Red Star held Napoli to a 0-0 draw at home in the first round, but then conceded 10 goals in losses against PSG (6-1) and Liverpool (4-0). Liverpool, which beat PSG at home, lost 2-0 to Red Star in its previous Champions League match, but it is coming off two straight wins in the Premier League. PSG, cruising in the French league, beat Liverpool 3-0 the only other time the teams met in Paris, nearly two decades ago. GROUP D Group leader Porto hosts second-place Schalke in a match in which a draw could be enough for both clubs to advance. They would clinch a spot in the knockout stage with a draw if Galatasaray fails to win its match at already eliminated Lokomotiv Moscow. A victory would secure first place for Porto, which has won eight straight entering the match at its Estadio do Dragao. Porto is trying to make it to the round of 16 for the third straight season. The Portuguese champion has 10 points, two more than Schalke and six more than Galatasaray. Porto and Schalke are the only unbeaten teams in the group. Schalke hasn't made it to the knockout stage since 2014-15. ___ Associated Press writers John Leicester, Ciaran Fahey and Steve Douglas contributed to this report......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 27th, 2018

Lions book Final 4 top spot

San Beda flexed its defensive muscles, neutralizing reigning MVP CJ Perez as the Red Lions repulsed the Lyceum of the Philippines University Pirates, 75-68, yesterday to claim Final Four top seeding in the 94th NCAA basketball tournament at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsOct 18th, 2018

PVL: Lady Eagles weather Lady Falcons upset scare for back-to-back wins

Ateneo-Motolite survived an upset scare from a very game Adamson-Akari, 17-25, 25-23, 25-20, 21-25, 15-12, on Sunday to score back-to-back wins in the Premier Volleyball League Season 2 Open Conference at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. Kat Tolentino stepped up big time in the deciding set, scoring six points in the frame to help the Lady Eagles improve to 4-1 win-loss record at second spot behind unbeaten BanKo (5-0). Tolentino scattered 28 points off 20 spikes, five kill blocks and three service aces while Jules Samonte added 11 markers off the bench for Ateneo-Motolite. Maddie Madayag and Ponggay Gaston chipped in nine points each for the Lady Eagles' second win in back-to-back weekend schedule after taking down Iriga-Navy in straight sets Saturday.   The incoming third year hitter scored five of Ateneo-Motolite's first nine points as the Lady Eagles built a 9-3 advantage. Behind Bernadette Flora and Ceasa Pinar's heroics, Adamson-Akari closed the gap, 9-8.  Ateneo-Motolite again went ahead, 13-11, before Krich Macaslang scored a hit to push the Lady Falcons within one, 13-12. Tolentino put the Lady Eagles at match point before Vanessa Gandler sealed the win with a cross court hit.    “Every game this is our problem because siguro new system, we always start slow for the past few games we really start slow and we try to fix that problem,” said Ateneo-Motolite head coach Oliver Almadro, who commended the Lady Falcons’ floor defense. “I thank the Lord that we won today, we won yesterday,” he added. “But I’m not happy with what we’ve shown today. It’s because, I guess, we’re getting used to playing pa sa back-to-back (schedule) so siguro being a student and an athlete hindi pa sanay doon sa big games na magkasunod. But we have to be used to it and this is a learning experience for us and we really just have to maximize our strength and really believing kung ano ang ginagawa namin.” The Lady Falcons, who showed superb floor defense but were plagued with terrible errors, dropped their sixth game in as many outings tied with the Lady Oragons. Adamson was in control of the second set, 10-5, but committed 11 of the frame's 13 errors the rest of the way as the Lady Falcons giave Ateneo-Motolite a chance to steal the set and tie the match.  The Lady Eagles again came back from a 14-15 deficit with a 10-4 run capped by an attack error by Flora for a 24-19 lead. Ateneo-Motolite committed a net touch in the next play before Adamson-Akari surrendered the set on another miscue by Flora.         Flora finished with 25 points on 20 kills, three kill blocks and a pair of aces while adding 24 digs and eight excellent receptions. Chiara Permentilla and Gracelchen Ave scored 15 and 12 markers, respectively, for Adamson.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles      .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 14th, 2018