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San Beda hunts for sixth straight win, semis spot insurance

Games Wednesday: (FilOil Flying V Centre, San Juan) 9:30 a.m. –- CSB vs. JRU (m) 11:00 a.m. –- CSB vs. JRU (w) 12:30 p.m. –- LPU vs. San Beda (w) 2:00 p.m. –- LPU vs. San Beda (m) 3:30 p.m. –- LPU vs. San Beda (jrs)   Undefeated San Beda College is out to secure at least a playoff for semifinals berth against the struggling Lyceum of the Philippines University in the 93rd NCAA women’s volleyball competition at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan on Wednesday.   The Lady Red Spikers are at solo second spot with a 5-0 win-loss record behind the repeat-seeking Arellano University (6-0). A win in their 12:30 p.m. duel will put SBC in a good position to advance in the Final Four and will break the Mendiola-based squad’s best start back in 2013 when the Janine Marciano and Ces Molina-led Lady Red Spikers won five straight to open their season. SBC is coming off a character-building 17-25, 25-15, 25-16, 27-29, 15-12, win against Letran on Monday with Cesca Racraquin and Nieza Viray leading the way. The Lady Red Spikers are heavily favored against the Lady Pirates, who are on a two-game skid with a 1-4 card, but SBC coach Nemesio Gavino is not taking LPU lightly.  “Every game naman nirerespeto namin yung aming mga nakakalaban,” said Gavino of their rivals, which absorbed a straight sets loss to the Lady Chiefs the last time out. Meanwhile, College of St. Benilde and Jose Rizal University clash at 11:00 a.m. The Lady Blazers sport a 3-2 mark tied with San Sebastian College while the Lady Bombers hold a 2-3 slate alongside Letran. Meanwhile, the Blazers (4-1) and Bombers (0-5) collide at 9:30 a.m. while the Pirates (1-4) and Red Spikers (4-1) meet at 2:00 p.m. in men’s action. In the lone juniors match, the Junior Pirates cross paths with the Red Cubs at 3:30 p.m.   ---  Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource: abscbn abscbnJan 23rd, 2018

Perfect Arellano U stakes sweep bid against CSB

Games Monday: (FilOil Flying V Centre, San Juan) 8:00 a.m. –- Letran vs EAC (jrs) 9:30 a.m. –- Letran vs. EAC (m) 11:00 a.m. –- Letran vs. EAC (w) 12:30 p.m. –- CSB vs. AU (w) 2:00 p.m. –- CSB vs. AU (m) 3:30 p.m. –- CSB-LSGH vs. AU (jrs)   Defending champion Arellano University is just two wins away from barging into the best-of-three Finals outright. Unbeaten in seven games and already assured of a semifinals berth, the Lady Chiefs face the inconsistent College of St. Benilde in their second to the last elimination round assignments in the 93rd NCAA women’s volleyball tournament at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan on Monday. The rematch of last year’s final stepladder semifinals match is slated at 12:30 p.m. after the 11:00 a.m. duel of Letran and also-ran Emilio Aguinaldo College. Arellano U is coming off a dominating 25-17, 25-10, 25-17 win over erstwhile unbeaten San Beda College last Friday for their seventh win in as many games and 19th straight victory since last year. While the Lady Chiefs are performing consistently, the Lady Blazers are struggling in their campaign for the remaining three semis berths. CSB is currently at sixth spot with a 3-3 win-loss record and is coming off a 21-25, 22-25, 21-25, last week. Another loss will put the Taft-based squad on the brink of elimination.        Meanwhile, Letran looks to fan its flickering semis hopes and snap a two-game skied. The Lady Knights still have an outside chance to advance in the semis but will need to sweep their last three games. Letran holds a 2-4 mark. EAC will play the spoiler’s role as the Lady Generals seek a follow up to its five-set win over Mapua University to barge in the win column after six outings. In men’s play, Arellano U (6-1) shoots for the first Final Four berth against defending champion CSB (5-1), which is on the hunt for at least a semis spot playoff, at 2:00 p.m. EAC (2-4) tries to keep its semis bid alive at 11:00 a.m. in a showdown with winless Letran (0-6). In the juniors division, EAC (4-0) and Letran (4-1) seek to secure at least a semis seat playoff in their 8:00 a.m. clash while CSB-La Salle Greenhills (4-1) and Arellano (2-3) meet at 3:30 p.m.   ---   Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles     .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 28th, 2018

San Beda posts best start, secures at least a semis spot playoff

Games Thursday: (FilOil Flying V Centre, San Juan) 9:30 a.m. –- EAC vs. Mapua (m) 11:00 a.m. –- EAC vs. Mapua (w) 12:30 p.m. –- Letran vs. San Sebastian (w) 2:00 p.m. –- Letran vs. San Sebastian (m) 3:30 p.m. –- Letran vs. San Sebastian (jrs)   San Beda College wrote history by posting its best start in recent years after claiming its sixth straight win in as many games and securing at least a playoff for a semifinals spot in the 93rd NCAA women’s volleyball competition. The victory came a lot sweeter for the Lady Red Spikers as they fought their way back from two sets down to outlast Lyceum of the Philippines University, 22-25, 19-25, 25-11, 25-17, 15-7, in a morale-boosting win at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan on Wednesday.    SBC once again joined defending champion Arellano University on top of the heap, making their battle on Friday a lot more interesting.   The Mendiola-based squad’s win surpassed the 5-0 start of the 2013 Lady Red Spikers then led by Janine Marciano and Ces Molina. “Para samin achievement ‘yun, pero ‘di kami kuntento dun, gusto namin Finals,” said SBC coach Nemesio Gavino, whose wards escaped their second straight five-set match after squeaking past Letran last Monday. “Kailangan talaga pag-usapan ang mga naging problema namin sa simula, correct ang errors sa ensayo, then prepare for Arellano,” he added. Cesca Racraquin put up MVP numbers as the Season 92 Rookie of the Year pounded 20 attacks while adding six of the Lady Red Spikers’ 20 aces to finish with game-high 26 points. The sophomore also anchored the squad’s floor defense with six excellent receptions for San Beda. Nieza Viray had 13 points while Trisha Paras and Jiezela Viray combined for 18 points for the Lady Red Spikers. SBC opened the match sluggish, allowing the Lady Pirates to jump on them early. But just like in their last match and their opening-day win over Jose Rizal University that also went into a decider, the Lady Red Spikers showed nerves of steel to dodge an upset. “Pangit talaga ang start namin, ang mga bata hindi makagalaw,” said Gavino, who rued his team’s atrocious 40 errors. “Parang may dinadala pero pasalamat pa rin ako kasi sa third set nakabawi.” LPU dropped their third straight match to slide at 1-5 record. Monica Sevilla had 13 points while Christine Miralles and Bien Juanillo posted 11 and 10 markers, respectively, in a lost cause for the Lady Pirates.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 24th, 2018

UAAP Women s Basketball: NU wins 78th straight, sweeps elims for outright Finals berth

For the fifth straight season, the ladies of the National University cruised to another sweep of the 14-game elimination round. This UAAP Season 81, the Lady Bulldogs cemented their inevitable history against the Far Eastern University via a 68-44 victory Friday afternoon at the Filoil Flying V Centre. It was also NU's record-setting 78th consecutive win dating back to July 13, 2014. National University Lady Bulldogs sweep the elimination rounds of #UAAPSeason81! This is their fifth straight sweep in the league. @abscbnsports pic.twitter.com/x6PLxuRsDe — Danine Cruz (@the9cruz) November 16, 2018 Dominant forces in the paint, Jack Animam and Rhena Itesi topped the scoreboards once again. Animam towed NU with 19 points, 18 rebounds, and two assists while Itesi added 14 points and 14 rebounds. Animam and Itesi limited FEU's Clare Castro to just six points on 3-of-11 shooting, well below her aveage of 16.5 points prior to the match. To add to NU's growing memorabilia, the NU community present in the venue celebrated the milestone with 14-0 shirts. National University Lady Bulldogs sweeps #UAAPSeason81! This is their fifth straight eliminations sweep. @abscbnsports pic.twitter.com/XpavE1dvax — Danine Cruz (@the9cruz) November 16, 2018 "I'm just happy na nasurvive namin uli yung 14-0 uli. We're just waiting for the championship kung sino man but still yung job namin is not yet done. We hope na we get the championship, that's the most important thing this season," said NU head coach Pat Aquino as his squad enjoyed their advantage. As they wait for their opponent in the finals, Aquino said that their team will be having a series of practice games and a team building. "We'll have a team building this next weekend and we'll continue working hard. Then we'll have practice games again with the boys like we did last few years back yung mga past season, yun ginagawa namin. There will be a Taiwan team na baka mag practice game kami, series of practice games," Aquino added. Valerie Mamaril and Fatima Quiapo produced nine points each to lead the way for the Lady Tamaraws. With a 9-5 record after the elimination round, FEU is tied with Adamson University and is set to have a playoff for the second seed and twice-to-beat advantage in the step-ladder semifinals. Adamson secured a spot in the step-ladder semifinals berth and a playoff for the twice-to-beat bonus in the process following an 80-65 romp of Ateneo. The University of Santo Tomas lost a 10-point third quarter lead but regrouped late in the game to nip De La Salle, 68-65, to extend its season and tie its victims at 8-6. With their ninth win in 14 contests, the Lady Falcons will play the Lady Tamaraws in a playoff for the No. 2 ranking in the semis on Wednesday. The Tigresses and the Lady Archers meet again in a do-or-die playoff for the last semifinals slot on Wednesday. Mariz Cacho scored 20 points while Nathalie Prado also had 20 points and pulled down 12 rebounds for Adamson University, which finished the elims with back-to-back wins. The University of the East beat fellow also-ran University of the Philippines, 71-56, to cap its season with two consecutive wins. The Lady Warriors, who placed second last year, ended up tied with the Lady Eagles in sixth and seven spots at 4-10. The Scores: First Game UE (71) -- Cortizano 15, Requiron 15, Francisco 11, Ganade 11, P. Pedregosa 10, L. Pedregosa 9, Borromeo 0, Nama 0, Brencis 0, Ebeza 0, Gaa 0, Strachan 0. UP (56) -- L. Ordoveza 15, Rodas 13, Cruz 12, Medina 7, Gonzales 6, Bascon 3, Amar 0, De Leon 0, De Guzman 0, Rivera 0, Hidalgo 0, Lebico 0, Moa 0, N. Ordoveza 0. Quarterscores: 14-17, 37-35, 56-49, 71-56 Second Game AdU (80) -- Cacho 20, Prado 20, Alcoy 11, Araja 9, Bilbao 8, Rosario 5, Camacho 3, Razalo 2, Aciro 2, Cabug 0, Osano 0, Tandaan 0. Ateneo (65) -- Buendia 15, Nimes 15, Guytingco 10, Go 7, Villamor 6, Cancio 5, Chu 3, Joson 2, Seigle 2, Newsome 0, Moslares 0, Miranda 0, Payac 0, Gino-gino 0, De Dios 0, Aquisap 0. Quarterscores: 16-14, 40-32, 66-48, 80-65 Third Game NU (68) -- Animam 19, Itesi 14, Pingol 9, Nabalan 7, Del Carmen 6, Camelo 6, Fabruada 4, Bartolo 2. Goto 1, Canuto 0, Cacho 0, Cac 0, Harada 0, Ceño 0, Layug 0. FEU (44) -- Mamaril 9, Quiapo 9, Castro 6, Antiola 5, Adriano 5, Bahuyan 4, Bastatas 2, Abat 2, Vidal 2, Taguiam 0, Payadon 0, Dugay 0. Quarterscores: 20-9, 35-21, 54-30, 68-44 Fourth Game UST (68) -- Larosa 25, Irebu 13, Ferrer 8, Capilit 7, Portillo 6, Aujero 4, Rivera 3, Sangalang 2, Tacatac 0, Magat 0, Gonzales 0. DLSU (65) -- K. Castillo 16, Nuñez 14, Revillosa 11, Claro 10, Paraiso 5, Torres 4, Binaohan 3, Quingco 2, Delcampo 0, Arciga 0, Jimenez 0. Quarterscores: 10-17, 31-28, 54-44, 68-65  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 16th, 2018

NCAA Season 94: Handa at palaban kami ngayon –- Napa

Letran just secured a spot in the Final Four and is in the right path to vie for the last semifinals twice-to-beat advantage in the NCAA Season 94 seniors basketball competition. The Knights’ chances for the Final Four bonus now depends on their next two assignments and a little help from fate. “’Yung tadhana na ang magsasabi kung aabot ba kami o hindi,” said Napa moments after Letran destroyed San Sebastian College, 79-61, Tuesday for its fifth straight win at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. Sporting a 12-4 win-loss record at solo third, the Intramuros-based squad now needs to sweep their last two outings against College of St. Benilde and University of Perpetual Help and pray hard for Lyceum of the Philippines University (14-2) or three-peat-seeking San Beda University (14-1) not to reach 15 wins to force a playoff for the semis incentive. But Napa’s focus right now is not about the semifinals scenario but on building his team’s momentum. “Pero hindi na namin iniisip yun eh (twice-to-beat),” he said. “Kung di namin makuha ang twice-to-beat o makuha namin ang twice-to-beat magtatrabaho pa rin kami.” His concern is to make sure that his squad will be ready for the Final Four -- with or without an incentive.   “Kung sino man ang makakatapat namin ay talagang paghahadaan namin dahil kaming Letran handa kami at palaban kami ngayon,” he said. Letran just gave a fair warning.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 9th, 2018

NCAA Season 94: Knights secure Final Four berth

Letran fought off the third quarter outburst of San Sebastian College - Recoletos with a scoring barrage in the payoff period for a 79-61 win to clinch a spot in the Final Four of the NCAA Season 94 men's seniors basketball competition at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. After squandering a 17-point lead at the half when the Stags cut down their deficit to seven heading into the fourth quarter, the Knights dropped a 13-2 blitz to widen the gap to 72-54 with just four minutes left in the game. From there Letran cruised to its 12th win in 16 games and advanced to the semifinals for the first time since winning it all back in Season 91. "Thankful kami kasi umabot kami sa ganitong sitwasyon pero di pa rin naman ito ang gusto naming mangyari. Mayroon pa kaming last two games na kailangang trabahuhin before we look forward doon sa Final Four," said Letran coach Jeff Napa, whose squad will wrap the elimination round against University of Perpetual Help and College of St. Benilde. Larry Muyang finished with a double-double with 15 points and 13 rebounds while Bonbon Batiller and Nico Galvelo added 15 and 14 markers, respectively, for the Knights. Chris Fajarito got 11 markers in Letran's fifth straight win. A sweep by the Intramuros-based squad in its last two outings coupled by either Lyceum of the Philippines University (14-2) or San Beda University (14-1) not reaching 15 wins will force a playoff for a semis twice-to-beat bonus.   Letran built a 42-25 lead after the first half but SSC-R poured 27 points in the third period to cut down its deficit to 59-52 heading into the payoff period.  The Knights were able to counter at the start of the fourth to build enough cushion for the win. Letran limited the Stags to only nine points in the final 10 minutes of the ballgame. SSC-R dropped to 4-12 win-loss record. Michael Calisaan had 19 points, Regile Ilagan added 12 markers while Jesse Sumoda chipped in 12 in a lost cause for the Stags.   Box score: Letran (79) --- Muyang 15, Batiller 15, Galvelo 14, Fajarito 11, Ambohot 8, Calvo 7, Quinto 4, Celis 3, Yu 2, Taladua 0, Balagasay 0, Banez 0, Agbong 0, Mandreza 0. SSC-R (61) --- Calisaan 16, Ilagan 13, Sumoda 12, Bulanadi 7, Capobres 7, Dela Cruz 4, Valdez 2, Calma 0, Desoyo 0, Villapando 0, Are 0, Baytan 0. Quarterscores: 19-10, 42-25, 59-52, 79-61.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 9th, 2018

NCAA Season 94: Altas near last semis seat

University of Perpetual Help secured at least a playoff for the last Final Four berth in the NCAA Season 94 seniors basketball competition after an 81–67 win over Emilio Aguinaldo College on Tuesday at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. The Altas won their sixth straight win to improve to 11-5 win-loss record and tighten their grip at the fourth spot. The victory also gave Perpetual some cushion against fifth running College of St. Benilde (8-7). Kim Aurin finished with a personal-best 26 points, Prince Eze got 14 markers and pulled down 16 rebounds while Jelo Razon got 11 points for the Las Pinas-based squad. Perpetual broke open the game with a huge third quarter push after heading into halftime with just a 37-35 lead. “We struggled a bit nu’ng the first half. Medyo tight ang mga bata, gusto tambakan agad. Pero normally sa mga games na ganito, yun ang inaasahan mong mangyari,” said Altas coach Frankie Lim. “Buti na lang nag-settle down.” “We had a strong third. We outscored them by 10 points in the third. Mas maganda ang flow ng opensa namin (sa second half),” he added. The Altas opened the third with a 15-2 start and outscored the Generals, 24-14, in the canto to control the game. The Generals lost its center Hamadou Laminou with just 22.6 seconds remaining and EAC trailing, 61-47, with a cut on his left eye. The center slammed his head on the floor after losing his balance on a turnaround and Perpetual’s Jerome Pasia landing on the back of Laminou’s head. Without their leading scorer and main man inside the paint, the Generals struggled and fell to 4-13 card. Laminou finished with 17 points, Jethro Mendoza also had 17 markers while JP Magullano got 10 points and 10 boards in a lost cause for the Generals.   Box score: Perpetual (81) --- Aurin 26, Eze 14, Razon 11, Coronel 8, Jimenez 8, Peralta 5, Charcos 4, Mangalino 3, Pasia 2, Cuevas 0, Sese 0, Tamayo 0. EAC (67) --- Laminou 17, Mendoza 17, Cadua 6, Corilla 4, Diego 4, Natividad 4, Gonzales 3, Tampoc 0, Garcia 0, Bautista 0, Bugarin 0, Neri 0, Fuentes 0. Quarterscores: 19-17, 37-35, 61-49, 81-67.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 9th, 2018

PVL: Lady Blazers try to keep semis bid alive

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

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 24th, 2018

Lions target No. 6

San Beda tries to keep fellow unbeaten Lyceum within sight as it guns for a sixth straight win against San Sebastian today even as Perpetual Help shoots for solo third spot against Mapua in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament at the Filoil Flying Center in San Juan......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsAug 15th, 2018

The curse of the Western Conference '4 seed

Here's a reminder for the Western Conference teams next season when they start jockeying for playoff seeding: Avoid the fourth seed at all costs. Sure you'll get home court advantage against the fifth seed, but that hasn't meant anything since the 2012 Playoffs. For the past seven years, all fourth seeds have lost to the fifth seeds, with the latest victims being the Oklahoma City Thunder, who were ousted in six games by the Utah Jazz. Is it sheer coincidence? A hardwood hex? A sign of parity? We'll run through the aforementioned seven series and let you decide for yourself. 2012 Playoffs - #5 LA Clippers (40-26) defeat #4 Memphis Grizzlies (41-25) in seven games The setup: It feels appropriate that this "curse" began during the lockout-shortened 2011-12 season. The Clippers were in year one of Lob City, having acquired Chris Paul during the offseason, while the Grizzlies were looking to build on their epic #8 vs #1 upset of the San Antonio Spurs from the previous postseason. What happened: The Grizzlies began this series in the worst possible way. In game one, they led by as much as 27 points, and were up 95-71 with 9:13 left to play. But then Nick Young happened. Swaggy P came off the Clippers bench and buried three straight triples, helping LA win game one, and build a 3-1 series lead. The Grizzlies won the next two though, sending things back to Bluff City for a game seven. Ultimately though, home court didn't help, as the Clippers broke the game wide open in the fourth, outscoring the Grizzlies 27-16, for an 82-72 victory. "That guy was on the team?": Reggie Evan led the Clippers in rebounding with 8.7 a night, while Gilbert Arenas played in six out of the seven games, totaling 23 minutes and four points for the Grizzlies. What next?: The Spurs swept the Clippers in the semis. 2013 Playoffs - #5 Memphis Grizzlies (56-26) defeat #4 LA Clippers (56-26) in six games The setup: The Clippers won their division for the VERY FIRST TIME in franchise history, while the Grizzlies were in full Grit 'N Grind mode, with Marc Gasol winning Defensive Player of the Year that season. What happened: Things started off well, with the Clippers winning the first two games in LA. However, the Grizzlies stood firm at home, knotting the series at 2-all. Things turned dire for LAC when star forward Blake Griffin suffered an ankle sprain during practice, limiting him to just 19:34 minutes in game five, which they lost. With their season on the line in the City of Angels for game six, Griffin could only play 13:56, and not even a career postseason-best 30 points by Matt Barnes could save the Clips. To add insult to injury, Chris Paul was ejected with 2:29 left, before the game ended with a 118-105 score. "That guy was on the team?": Tayshaun Prince was Memphis' starting small forward, while Grant Hill and Lamar Odom, both with the Clips, played their last NBA seasons. What next?: The Grizzlies dispatched the OKC Thunder in five games in the conference finals, before losing to the Spurs via a sweep in the West Finals. 2014 Playoffs - #5 Portland Trail Blazers (54-28) defeat #4 Houston Rockets (54-28) in six games The setup: The Houston Rockets added Dwight Howard to a roster that already had James Harden, Jeremy Lin, and Chandler Parsons, making them one of the top teams in the West. The Portland Trail Blazers meanwhile built on Damian Lillard's 2013 Rookie of the Year campaign and snapped a two-year postseason drought. What happened: While things were tightly contested, three of the first four games went to overtime, the Blazers seemingly had the Rockets' number, winning two of those OT games, en route to a 3-1 series lead. The Rockets managed to stave off elimination at home in game five, but in game six, Lillard truly made a name for himself, by canning a series-winning shot, allowing Rip City to advance for the first time in 14 years. "That guy was on the team?": Mo Williams was Portland's sixth man (8.2 ppg, 1.8 rpg, 1.8 apg), while Omer Asik teamed up with Howard in the Houston frontcourt. What next?: The Blazers managed to take one game from the Spurs, before bowing out in the conference semifinals. 2015 Playoffs - #5 Memphis Grizzlies (55-27) defeat #4 Portland Trail Blazers (51-31) in five games The setup: The Blazers won the Northwest Division, but the next two teams in the standings, the Grizzlies and the Spurs, both had notched 55 wins, four more than them. Portland's main problem though was swingman Wesley Matthews tearing an achilles tendon early in March, a season-ending injury. What happened: Portland struggled to find someone who could take the starting SG spot on their roster with Matthews out, cycling through CJ McCollum, Allen Crabbe, and Arron Afflalo. That trio, as starters, combined to shoot 4-of-22 for 10 points over five games, allowing the Memphis D to concentrate on Lillard and LaMarcus Aldridge. The Grizzlies won the first three games, before picking up the clincher in game five, despite starting point guard Mike Conley suffering a facial fracture in game three and missing the rest of the series. "That guy was on the team?": Nick Calathes wound up assuming the point guard duties for the Grizzlies, in what turned out to be his final NBA stint (he went back to playing in Greece after the season). What next?: The Grizzlies lost in six games in the next round to the Golden State Warriors, after the Dubs made their famous adjustment to use Andrew Bogut to guard Tony Allen. 2016 Playoffs - #5 Portland Trail Blazers (44-38) defeat #4 LA Clippers (53-29) in six games The setup: The LA Clippers came really close to losing center DeAndre Jordan to the Dallas Mavericks in the offseason, but you all know what happened instead. As for the Portland Trail Blazers, the team rebuilt after losing LaMarcus Aldridge and Nic Batum, among others, pairing Lillard with Most Improved Player winner CJ McCollum in the backcourt. What happened: The Paul-Griffin-Jordan trio looked splendid early on, going up 2-0 after games in LA. The Blazers struck back and won game three, but then disaster waylaid LA in game four, with BOTH Paul (broken hand) and Griffin (quad) exiting the game and the series. That paved the way for the Blazers to complete their run and advance. "That guy was on the team?": It was Chris Kaman's final NBA season, and he spent it as a locker room guy for the Blazers. It was also Clippers guard Pablo Prigioni's last stint in the NBA (not counting several preseason games with the Rockets the next season, before he got cut and returned to Europe). What next?: The Blazers advanced to the West semis, where they lost in five games to the Warriors, despite Stephen Curry missing the first three matches. 2017 Playoffs - #5 Utah Jazz (51-31) defeat #4 LA Clippers (51-31) in seven games The setup: It was a battle between two teams looking to go far in the postseason in the hopes of enticing their future free agents to re-up. For the Jazz, Gordon Hayward was the player in question, while for the Clippers, both Chris Paul and Blake Griffin had the ability to depart in the offseason. What happened: Iso-Joe Johnson did Iso-Joe things, stealing game one for the Jazz on the Clippers' home court. Undeterred, the Clippers proceeded to win the next two, for a 2-1 advantage, but game three turned out to be costly. The team the next day announced that Blake Griffin was out for the rest of the season due to a toe injury. Still, things went to a game seven, in LA, but the Clippers did not have the firepower to win out, and the Jazz were able to get the victory and advance. What next?: The Jazz got swept by the Warriors in the West semis. And ironically, both Hayward and Paul wound up departing their respective teams. In addition, Griffin did sign an extension with the Clippers, but they wound up trading him mid-way through the 2017-18 campaign. 2018 Playoffs - #5 Utah Jazz (48-34) defeat #4 Oklahoma City Thunder (48-34) in six games The setup: The Jazz equaled their postseason rank from last season, thanks to the brilliance of rookie Donovan Mitchell, while the Thunder formed a "Big Three" comprising Russell Westbrook, Paul George, and Carmelo Anthony. What happened: Paul George sizzled for 36 points to help the Thunder win game one, but Ricky Rubio and Donovan Mitchell teamed up to help the Jazz win the next three. On the brink of elimination, Russell Westbrook led a dominant third quarter effort in OKC to force a game six, but in Salt Lake City, the Jazz managed to hold on, and earn the series victory. What next?: The Jazz will now test themselves against the top-seeded Houston Rockets. Should be a good one. The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or ABS-CBN Sports......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 29th, 2018

DE JESUS: Genius, disciplinarian, champion coach

This story was originally published on May 7, 2017 De La Salle University head coach Ramil De Jesus came inside the press room of the Big Dome for a post-game interview wearing the same smile he had in the past nine times the Lady Spikers closed the UAAP season as champions. The only difference in those championship interviews were the players that accompanied him to answer questions from reporters. From Iris Ortega-Patrona, Desiree Hernandez, Maureen Penetrante, the legendary Manilla Santos, the Big Three of Cha Cruz, Paneng Mercado and Jacq Alarca, to Michel Gumabao and beast-mode-don’t-care Aby Marano to Ara Galang, Mika Reyes, Kim Dy and gem of a setter in Kim Fajaro – all of them stood beside a genius and architect of DLSU’s successful volleyball program. Victory after victory, De Jesus built his reputation as a one of the best women’s volleyball mentors in the country. Last Saturday, De Jesus added another feather to his cap when he steered the Taft-based squad to back-to-back titles in the 79th UAAP women’s volleyball tournament at the expense of archrival Ateneo de Manila. Two decades since his arrival to the school of a different shade of green after playing for Far Eastern University, delivered 10 titles and brought the Lady Spikers to the Finals 17 times.   De Jesus shared the secret of his success. “Siguro, sistema siguro then hard work. And then, well-disciplined ‘yung mga bata. Siguro, ‘yun ‘yung key,” he said. His success earned him the respect of his peers including three-time UAAP men’s volleyball champion Oliver Almadro of Ateneo, who was once one of his lieutenants, and players alike. DLSU embraced him as one of its own. “Natutuwa ako kasi kahit hindi ako alumnus doon niyakap nila ako bilang parang doon na din nag-graduate,” said De Jesus. “Hindi ko naman napapansin ang mga nanyayari sa akin sila lang ang nakakapansin, binigyan nga ako ng award. Happy, very happy (ako).” De Jesus is known to be a no nonsense coach. Strict, straightforward and a disciplinarian – traits he inherited from FEU men’s coach Kid Santos.                He doesn’t like fanfare and as much as possible keeps attention away from him. De Jesus carefully chooses his words but when he gives one, everybody listens. He means business all the time.   Brilliance of De Jesus 246-65. De Jesus knows how to win and his career win-loss record says it all. The main reason why DLSU trusted De Jesus to handle the team for that many years – a rare feat considering that a UAAP coach’s tenure is very volatile.   It was summer 20 years ago when former basketball Olympian and influential DLSU sport personality Ramoncito Campos brought in a young mentor in De Jesus to save the school’s volleyball program, which then had yet to win a title since joining the league in 1986.           He entered the UAAP volleyball scene during the time when powerhouse teams Far Eastern University and University of Sto. Tomas, then mentored by legendary coach August Sta. Maria, were the ones lording over here the competition. Of course the road to glory didn’t come easy but his first tour of duty gave DLSU a chance to feel what it was to be in the Final Four when the Lady Spikers finished fourth a year when after strings of forgettable seasons. Quenching the thirst to salvage some pride in the sport that will eventually be DLSU’s second most valued contest next to basketball, the Lady Spikers began to hunger for the crown – something the school never felt before since winning it all back in 1976 as a member of the NCAA.   De Jesus submitted his team to Spartan-like training and hammering discipline and slowly molded the Lady Spikers to a championship-caliber squad. In Season 61, DLSU challenged FEU for the crown but the Lady Tamaraws’ championship experience prevailed. The loss only fueled De Jesus’ desire to bring the Lady Spikers to the throne even more. With the core of ace hitter Ortega-Patrona, setter Valerie Bautista, Sally Macasaet, Sheryl Magallanes, Demelle Chua, Hollie Reyes and then sophomore Ivy Remulla, De Jesus steered DLSU on the right track for another shot at the crown. Midway in the season Bautista got pregnant. De Jesus, calm and composed, knew what to do. He converted open spiker Reyes into a setter and the gambit worked as DLSU once again punched a ticket to the Finals, this time against UST – a very hungry team looking to reclaim the title. A year removed from the throne, UST was ready for the kill. But the Espana-based squad went against a famished team – DLSU will not leave the sweltering University of the Philippines Human Kinetics Gym without the championship trophy. In front of a crowd - dwarf-sized compared to the multitude of fans that troop bigger venues of today – the Lady Spikers wrote history. DLSU slew a giant in a thrilling five-set game behind the stellar performance of Ortega-Patrona, who won that Season’s Most Valuable Player award – the first of many incredible volleybelles that will bag the highest individual honor under De Jesus’ tutelage.     It was an incredible feat but it won’t see a repeat in the next three years.              Grand Slam After their breakthrough title, the Lady Spikers had three straight bride’s maid finishes behind FEU. Heartbreaks brought by Ortega-Patrona’s falling out with De Jesus over a disciplinary issue in Season 63 and the unstoppable power of FEU's Monica Aleta, who won three straight MVP awards while towing the Lady Tams to a three-peat. Like a chess master, De Jesus learned from his mistakes before pulling off a feat that will cement his name as one of the greatest. With Hernandez, Penetrante and a young Santos as his main pieces, he steered the Lady Spikers to a rare three-peat. DLSU brought into heel FEU, UST and Adamson to complete a grand slam. A four-peat loomed for the celebrated Lady Spikers but fate played a cruel trick on them after UAAP suspended DLSU in Season 69 because the Green Archers' basketball squad fielded two ineligible players the previous year.       When the ban was lifted in Season 70, De Jesus and the Lady Spikers were again under the radar as title contenders together with the defending champion UST, FEU and Adamson. But team was forced to file a leave of absence from the school while the tournament was ongoing because Alarca saw action despite incomplete academic credentials to be eligible to play. All of the team’s won games where Alarca played where forfeited and the Lady Spikers ended up at seventh place. It was a painful setback but it also served as a rallying point for DLSU. With Santos playing her final year and the emergence of enigmatic but then rookie libero Mel Gohing in Season 71, the Lady Spikers denied the then graduating Rachel Anne Daquis and FEU back-to-back crowns. DLSU relinquished the throne to the Angeli Tabaquero and Aiza Maizo-led Tigresses the following year. The Lady Spikers avenged their loss the next season in a rematch with UST behind Alarca, Mercado, Cruz, Gumabao and Gohing in the start of De Jesus’ second three-peat.   DLSU-Ateneo rivalry Nobody really knows when UAAP volleyball picked up the tremendous following it has today. Maybe it needed something for people to get hooked into. A continuous rivalry, perhaps? For six straight years DLSU and Ateneo did just that. The storied rivalry between La Salle and Ateneo spilled from the basketball court to the taraflex mat of volleyball. De Jesus had in his bench the core of veterans Cruz, Gumabao and Marano back and freshmen Galang, Reyes and Demecillo when they met in the Season 74 Finals a young and promising Lady Eagles side – much like the Lady Spikers De Jesus inherited 14 seasons back. Led by Fille Cainglet, Dzi Gervacio and a fresh recruit from University of Sto. Tomas high school Alyssa Valdez, Ateneo gave DLSU a tough challenge for two seasons but the Lady Spikers repelled them both times. Then came Lady Eagles Thai mentor Tai Bundit. For three years in a row, De Jesus’ system bested the rest of the field including that of then Ateneo coach Roger Gorayeb. However, a coach who barely spoke English or Filipino provided him a challenge in Season 76. DLSU with an intact core led by Marano, swept its way straight to the Finals with a thrice-to-beat advantage. Ateneo crawled its way to the championship round through a series of do-or-die games. De Jesus is an old-school type of coach. His system is hinged on well-planned strategies and tactics. He was pitted against Bundit’s Thai-style of play anchored on a heartstrong mantra and a ‘happy, happy’ approach of the game. Bundit dances on the sideline, an animated fellow during the matches. De Jesus is stoic as always. When the two collided for the title for the first time, Bundit shocked De Jesus and DLSU when Ateneo beat them thrice in a four-game series that went the full distance. Bundit and the Valdez-led Lady Eagles did it again the following year, completing a season sweep at the expense of the Lady Spikers, who struggled to pose any form resistance in the Finals after Galang went down with a season-ending ACL tear in the semis. It was a devastating loss to say the least. But De Jesus, a general who fought many battles for the green and white, stuck with the weapon that brought him success – his ability to adjust. Outdueled by Bundit in their last six matches, De Jesus found a way to stop the rampaging Lady Eagles in their first meeting in Season 78. Ateneo equalized in the second round and even took the top spot after the elimination. The Lady Spikers and the Lady Eagles would eventually meet in the Finals for the fifth year in a row. De Jesus was ready for Ateneo. He knew the strengths and weaknesses of the Lady Eagles and used it to his advantage to win the series opener. The then graduating Valdez brought Ateneo back in Game 2 to tie the series, but DLSU completed its long-awaited revenge in the decider and gave Reyes, Demecillo and Galang a fitting sendoff gift.                  Road to back-to-back Losing five veterans including three of their key players heading into Season 79 gave De Jesus one of the toughest challenges he ever faced as a DLSU mentor.  Setter Kim Fajardo returned for her swan song together with fourth year playes Kim Dy, Dawn Macandili and Majoy Baron. Desiree Cheng also came back after a year of absence due to a knee injury, but De Jesus was still left to navigate with a relatively young crew.  “Sa laht nang nai-form kong team, ito yung medyo (up and down) yung performance,” he said. “Sobrang babaw ng bench, wala ka halos (mahugot) pagtingin mo, wala ka makuha.” DLSU struggled early and was on the losing end of two elims matches against Ateneo. “Ateneo nu’ng buong elimination NU lang ang halos tumalo. Sabi ko ano bang meron ang team na ito?” he said. “Pinilit lang naming habulin.” “Kasi alam ko nag-start kami medyo hilaw ang team namin. Early part ng first round natalo kami sa UP sabi ko pukpok pa tayo, habol pa,” De Jesus added. “Ang nakakatuwa sa mga bata, ang determinasyon na humabol nandoon.” When the De Jesus found himself leading the Lady Spikers to a sixth straight title series against Bundit and the Lady Eagles, he knew his squad was ready to defend their crown. And protect it they did in a series sweep capped by a dramatic five-set victory.    “Siguro buong eliminations, nire-review namin ang mga games, nakikita mo yung difference, ‘yung advantage at disadvantage ng team, so siguro doon kami nag-focus, kung saan kami medyo dehado. Concentrate kami sa training,” he said. “Ine-explain ko rin sa players kung ano yung dapat naming gawin, although mahirap. So, tanggapin na lang nila.” In a rare moment, when Ateneo’s Jho Maraguinot sent her attack long that signaled DLSU’s back-to-back championships, De Jesus let his hair down a little. He was jumping, dancing, celebrating the victory and even held his hands up, both his palms wide open as confetti dropped and the deafening roar of the crowd and banging of the drums echoed inside the arena. De Jesus won his tenth title. When the celebration subsided, De Jesus fashioned the same smile he wore in his past nine championships as he was led inside the pressroom of the Big Dome. Only this time around, Fajardo, Cheng and Dy were the ones who followed him from behind.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 20th, 2018

UAAP VOLLEYBALL: Ateneo hunts for at least a Final Four twice-to-beat playoff

Ateneo de Manila University and University of the Philippines rekindle the ‘Battle of Katipunan’ with an all-important showdown Saturday in the 80th UAAP women’s volleyball tournament at the MOA Arena. The duel begins at 4:00 p.m. with the semis-bound Lady Eagles hoping to solidify their bid for a twice-to-beat advantage against a Lady Maroons side fighting for survival. The match will air live on ABS-CBN S+A Channel 23, ABS-CBN S+A HD Channel 166, LIGA on SkyCable Channel 86, LIGA HD on SkyCable Channel 183 and via livestream. A win by Ateneo, which holds a 9-3 win-loss card, will assure the Lady Eagles of at least a playoff for the Final Four incentive. After a slow start in the first round of eliminations, Ateneo is now on na five-game roll including back-to-back five-set victories over Adamson University and University of Sto. Tomas. The Lady Eagles defeated the Lady Maroons in straight sets in their first round meeting. UP sports a 4-8 slate tied with UST and has its back against the wall in the race for a semis spot. To force at least a playoff for a Final Four berth, the Lady Maroons need to sweep their remaining games and hope that Adamson University (5-6) and National University (6-6), which UP swept last Wednesday, won’t reach seven wins.     ---           Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 6th, 2018

SSC-R, San Beda College out to strengthen Final Four bids

Games Tuesday: (FilOil Flying V Centre, San Juan) 8:00 a.m. –- San Beda vs SSC-R (jrs) 9:30 a.m. –- San Beda vs. SSC-R (m) 11:00 a.m. –- San Beda vs. SSC-R (w) 12:30 p.m. –- Mapua vs. Perpetual (w) 2:00 p.m. –- Mapua vs. Perpetual (m)   San Beda College sets its eyes on booking a Final Four seat against San Sebastian College which seeks to secure at least a playoff for a semis berth on Tuesday in the 93rd NCAA women’s volleyball competition at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. Opening serve of the marquee match is at 11:00 a.m. The Lady Red Spikers absorbed their first setback in the tournament, losing in straight sets, 17-25, 10-25, 17-25, at the hands of semifinals-bound defending champion Arellano University on Friday. San Beda is currently at second spot with a 6-1 win-loss record. But bouncing back from the loss will be a tough challenge for Lady Red Spikers as they will face a team riding the crest of a four-game winning streak. The Lady Stags after losing suffering back-to-back losses in their first three outings are now on a roll to move at solo third with a 5-2 slate. Meanwhile, University of Perpetual Help challenge the winless Mapua University at 12:30 p.m. The Lady Altas sport a 4-2 mark while the Lady Cardinals are listless in seven outings and are on a 16-game skid since last season.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 29th, 2018

SSC-R cruises to third straight win, climbs to a share of third spot

Games Friday: (FilOil Flying V Centre, San Juan) 8:00 a.m. –- Arellano U vs San Beda (jrs) 9:30 a.m. –- Arellano U vs. San Beda (m) 11:00 a.m. –- Arellano U vs. San Beda (w)   San Sebastian College fueled its Final Four hopes with its third straight win in a cakewalk, 25-9, 25-22, 25-18 crushing of Letran Thursday in the 93rd NCAA women’s volleyball competition at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. The Lady Stags moved up to a tie with idle University of Perpetual Help at third to fourth spots with their fourth win in six games that put SSC-R on the right track of occupying a spot in the semifinals. “Nasa within firing range pa rin dun sa semis. Nakakatuwa sila ngayon kasi wala masyadong errors,” said SSC-R coach Roger Gorayeb. “At least ‘yung laro na aking sinasabi nagagawa naman nila.” Joyce Sta. Rita, who came fresh from a career-high 28-point explosion Tuesday against Mapua, scored 18 points in an all-around offensive performance that saw her unleash 10 kills, post five kill blocks and pick a couple of service aces for the Lady Stags. Nikka Dalisay added 12 points while Daurene Santos had 11 markers for SSC-R, which still has Lyceum of the Philippines and unbeaten teams San Beda College and Arellano University in its list of assignments. Letran absorbed its second straight defeat to slide back at 2-4 card. Kathleen Barrinuevo and Jaymeleene Parin finished with six points each for the Intramuros-based squad, who sufferedanother sorry loss after a five-set setback to the Lady Red Spikers last Monday.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 25th, 2018

San Sebastian College out to claim third straight win

Games Thursday: (FilOil Flying V Centre, San Juan) 9:30 a.m. –- EAC vs. Mapua (m) 11:00 a.m. –- EAC vs. Mapua (w) 12:30 p.m. –- Letran vs. San Sebastian (w) 2:00 p.m. –- Letran vs. San Sebastian (m) 3:30 p.m. –- Letran vs. San Sebastian (jrs)   Back in dangerous form, the San Sebastian College Lady Stags set their eyes on extending their winning streak to three and boosting their bid for a Final Four berth against Letran in the 93rd NCAA women’s volleyball competition on Thursday. The Lady Stags are currently at fourth spot with a 3-2 win-loss record and a win against the Lady Knights in their 12:30 p.m. tussle at the FilOil Flying V Centre will fan SSC-R’s semis hopes. Unbeaten teams repeat-seeking Arellano University and San Beda College share the top spot with 6-0 slates and are assured of at least a playoff for a Final Four seat while University of Perpetual Help is at solo third with a 4-2 mark. Despite playing with only eight available players, the Lady Stags recovered from a two-game skid to score back-to-back victories against College of St. Benilde and Mapua University – both in four sets. SSC-R defeated the Lady Cardinals, 25-20, 25-7, 29-31, 25-14, last Tuesday. Letran, on the other hand, is fresh from a sorry 25-17, 15-25, 16-25, 29-27, 12-15, loss to the Lady Red Spikers despite an 8-2 advantage in the deciding frame. The Intramuros-based squad sports a 2-3 slate. Meanwhile, winless teams Emilio Aguinaldo College and Mapua cross paths at 11:00 a.m. Both squads dropped all of their first five outings. In men’s play, the Generals (2-3) clash with the Cardinals (3-2) at 9:30 a.m. while the Stags (1-4) and Knights (0-5) meet at 2:00 p.m. In the lone juniors match at 3:30 p.m., the Squires (3-1) will take on the Staglets (0-3).   ---     Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles      .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 24th, 2018

Arellano U out to secure at least a semis spot playoff

Games Tuesday: (FilOil Flying V Centre, San Juan) 9:30 a.m. – SSC-R vs. Mapua (m) 11:00 a.m. –- SSC-R vs. Mapua (w) 12:30 p.m. –- Arellano U vs. Perpetual (w) 2:00 p.m. –- Arellano U vs. Perpetual (m) 3:30 p.m. –- Arellano U vs. Perpetual (jrs)   Defending champion Arellano University shoots to secure at least a semifinals spot playoff in a showdown with University of Perpetual Help Tuesday in the 93rd NCAA women’s volleyball tournament at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. Game time is at 12:30 p.m. The Lady Chiefs are unbeaten in five games and share the hold of the lead with San Beda College. The Obet Javier-mentored squad is on a 17-game winning roll since last season. Behind the troika of Jovielyn Prado, Regine Arocha and rookie Necole Ebuen, Arellano U made short work of Lyceum of the Philippines University, 25-16, 25-17, 25-11, last Sunday. But the Lady Chiefs are expected to have a tougher time against the Lady Altas, who are looking for their fourth straight win. The Las Pinas-based squad is currently at solo third spot with a 4-1 win-loss slate. After absorbing a straight sets defeat at the hands of San Beda College, Perpetual crushed their next three opponents including a 25-21, 22-25, 25-14, 25-21, demolition of Jose Rizal University last Sunday.  Meanwhile, San Sebastian College seeks to score its second straight win and improve its 2-2 slate  The Lady Stags are favored to win against the Lady Cardinals, who are winless in four outings. Mapua absorbed a 23-25, 14-25, 25-22, 15-25, defeat at the hands of the Lady Red Spikers last Friday. The Lady Cardinals are now on a 13-game losing slump. In men’s play, Perpetual and Arellano U put their unblemished record and hold of the lead on the line in their 2:00 p.m. tussle with the winner securing at least a semifinals berth playoff. The Altas and Chiefs share the lead with 5-0 cards. The Stags (1-3) and Cardinals (2-2) clash in the curtain-raiser at 9:30 a.m. In the lone juniors match, the Junior Altas eye to bounce back from a straight sets setback the last time out against Emilio Aguinaldo College in their 3:30 p.m. match with the Braves. Perpetual sports a 3-1 card while Arellano only has one win in three outings.   ---     Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles    .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 22nd, 2018

NCAA Season 93: women s volleyball preview

Exciting volleyball action starts early this year as NCAA opens its 93rd season on Thursday at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. Arellano University will try to retain its women’s crown against a field filled with squad’s raring to sit on the throne. Let’s take a quick peek at the competing teams.   MAPUA UNIVERSITY LADY CARDINALS   Winless last year, can Mapua University finally put a stop on their skid?  Season 92 record: 0-9 Titles: none  Key players: Danielle Ramilo, Shaira Hermano, Katrina Racelis, Dianne Latayan This team has nowhere to go but up after a forgettable season last year. The Lady Cardinals lost four of their games in straight sets, three in four frames and a couple of matches in five. Mapua’s last victory was against Letran in five sets back in Season 91 (January 7, 2016).   EMILIO AGUINALDO COLLEGE LADY GENERALS   Emilio Aguinaldo College needs to be consistent to add more Ws in their record this season.  Season 92 record: 1-8 Titles: none Players to watch: Iona Yongco and Yvette Tongco EAC’s lone win last season came at the expense of Mapua in straight sets before closing their campaign with a five-set loss against Letran.   LETRAN LADY KNIGHTS   Can Letran contend for a spot in the Final Four this year? Season 92 record: 2-7 Titles: 8 (last title: 1999) Players to watch: Glayssa Faith Torres and Jaymeleene Parin Letran finished at eighth spot last year. They won only two games, against Mapua and EAC, but gave Lyceum, College of St. Benilde and San Sebastian College a scare before bowing down to these powerhouse teams in five sets.   JOSE RIZAL U LADY BOMBERS   Shola Alvarez is expected to carry Jose Rizal University on her shoulders but will need to get support from her teammates. Season 92 record: 3-6 Titles: none Players to watch: Shola Alvarez, Dolly Versoza, Karen Montojo (Season 92 Best Opposite Spiker) JRU is a young and vertically challenged team, mostly banking on Shola Alvarez for point production. The Lady Bombers joined the PVL’s Collegiate Conference during the offseason but lost all of their five matches.    LYCEUM OF THE PHILIPPINES U LADY PIRATES   Lyeum of the Philippines University is considered as a darkhorse this season.  Season 92 record: 5-4 Titles: none Players to watch: Cherilyn Sindayen, Christine Miralles, Bien Juanillo An intact and veteran-laden team. But will the Lady Pirates’ exposure in the PVL Collegiate Conference be enough for them to contend for a spot in the Final Four?     UNIVERSITY OF PERPETUAL HELP LADY ALTAS   Veteran Lourdes Clemente will be one of Perpetual Help's vital cogs in their campaign to reclaim the throne.   Season 92 record: 5-4 Titles: 3 (last title: 2014) Players to watch: Lourdes Clemente, Necelle Gual, Marijo Medalla Former CSB coach Macky Carino replaced long-time mentor Sammy Acaylar but the Lady Altas lost a solid middle in Coleen Bravo and hitter Jamela Suyat. After its three-peat (2012-14), Perpetual has yet to return to the Finals.     SAN BEDA COLLEGE LADY RED SPIKERS   All eyes will be on Cesca Racraquin when San Beda College makes a run for the crown. Season 92 record: 6-3 Titles: none Players to watch: Cesca Racraquin, Satrianni Espiritu, Nieza and Jiezela Viray Season 92 Rookie of the Year Cesca Racraquin will be the go-to guy of the Lady Red Spikers, who made it into the stepladder semis last year. SBC participated in the PVL Collegiate Conference while Racraquin had good stints in the PVL Reinforced and Open conferences for Creamline.      COLLEGE OF ST. BENILDE LADY BLAZERS   Ranya Musa (left) and Rachel Austero are the players to watch for a beefed up College of St. Benilde. Season 92 record: 6-3 Titles: 1 (2016) Players to watch: Ranya Musa, Rachel Austero, Maritess Pablo, Felicia Cui Expectations are high for this team with the arrival of transferees Maritess Pablo (NU) and Felicia Cui (Ateneo) to help Rachel Austero and graduating player Ranya Musa.     Leadership will be a tough challenge for this team after the departure of ace scorer Jeanette Panaga as well as adapting to a new system under interim head coach Arnold Laniog, who replaced Macky Carino.     SAN SEBASTIAN COLLEGE LADY STAGS   San Sebastian College is looking at a rough and bumpy road ahead this season. Season 92 record: 9-0 elims, defeated thrice in the Finals Titles: 23 (last title: 2011) Players to watch: Joyce Sta. Rita, Alyssa Eroa, Nikka Dalisay The most-decorated volleyball program in the NCAA will be facing its toughest season yet. If losing scorers three-time Most Valuable Player Grethcel Soltones and Kat Villegas weren’t enough, head coach Roger Goreyab will have at his disposal a very short rotation on nine players. But his available players could even go down entering the season after Julie Anne Tiangco suffered a knee injury recently. Scarcity of players even forced SSC-R to field a swimmer to fill in the required minimun of nine players to be able to participate in the tournament.       ARELLANO UNIVERSITY LADY CHIEFS   Who will stop Arellano University from its back-to-back bid? Season 92 record: 8-1, won thrice in a row in the Finals Titles: 2 (last title: 2017) Players to watch: Jovielyn Prado, Regine Arocha, Andrea Marzan The Lady Chiefs lost Rialen Sante and veteran libero Eunice Galang, who both graduated, after last season but will still parade a grizzled core. Fueled by their stints in the PVL including a third place finish in the Collegiate League at the expense of UAAP team Adamson University, Arellano U is expected to make a return trip into the Finals. With SSC-R, the only team to defeat the Obet Javier-mentored squad last year, weakened after the departure of Soltones, the only question now is who will stop the Lady Chiefs’ impending rampage?       --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 1st, 2018

Halep secures top ranking, Nadal vs Kyrgios in Beijing final

em>By Sandra Harwitt, Associated Press /em> Simona Halep will take over the top ranking after reaching the China Open final on Saturday, and Rafael Nadal will play Nick Kyrgios for the men's title. Halep beat French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko 6-2, 6-4, ensuring that when the WTA rankings are updated on Monday she will be the first women's No. 1 from Romania. Halep could have reached No. 1 earlier but was upset in the French Open final by Ostapenko in their first career meeting. 'Of course it's the best moment in my life, and I want just to keep it,' Halep said in Beijing. 'And I have a few more dreams in my career. I tell you one, only one. To win a Grand Slam.' Halep only had to reach the final this week — and not lose to Elina Svitolina of Ukraine in the final — to knock Garbine Muguruza from the top spot. Muguruza retired during her opening match on Monday because of a cold. Top-seeded Nadal defeated third-seeded Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria 6-3, 4-6, 6-1 in the semifinals, his tour-leading 60th match win. Dimitrov's only victory against the Spaniard in 10 matches came last year in the China Open quarterfinals. On Saturday, his backhand cross-court winner secured the second set, on a second set point, on Nadal's serve in the 10th game. But Nadal took immediate control of the third set, racing to 4-0. Kyrgios didn't drop his serve in ousting second-seeded Alexander Zverev of Germany 6-3, 7-5 in the other semi. The Australian had an impressive 70 percent first-serve percentage and posted 11 aces to none for Zverev, who is normally known for his serving prowess. Nadal and Kyrgios are tied at two matches apiece in their head-to-head, but the Australian won their latest outing in August in straight sets in the Cincinnati quarterfinals. Nadal is one of three players, along with Roger Federer and Zverev, to win five titles this year. He won the China Open 12 years ago. 'It's very important for me to continue with the positive feelings after winning the U.S. Open,' Nadal said. 'To be back here and be in the final with that very tough draw I had since the beginning is a great effort.' Looking for her second title of the year after winning in Madrid, Halep will play Caroline Garcia of France in the Beijing final. Garcia beat Petra Kvitova 6-3, 7-5 in the second semifinal. Ostapenko entered the semis without dropping a set. But Halep dominated the first set, breaking Ostapenko's serve in the first game at love. She cemented her lead with another break in the seventh game for 5-2 to serve out the set. In the second, Halep surrendered a 3-2 lead with a service break in the sixth game, but went on to break serve again in the ninth. At 40-0 in the final game, Halep won with a clean forehand winner down the line. Garcia, who saved a match point against Svitolina, is on a 10-match winning streak. Garcia lost in straight sets to Halep in the Montreal quarterfinals in their last meeting. 'That's the kind of match I want to play, against the top players,' Garcia said of Sunday's final against Halep. 'She's a very tricky player.'   .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 8th, 2017

Squires and Staglets still in a dead heat for fourth spot

strong>STANDINGS /strong> br /> Malayan 12-2 br /> CSB-LSGH 10-4 br /> San Beda 9-5 br /> Letran 9-6 br /> San Sebastian 8-6 br /> LPU 7-8 br /> Arellano 6-8 br /> Perpetual 4-9 br /> JRU 5-9 br /> EAC 1-14 One team is in and already has twice-to-beat advantage, two teams are knocking on the door of the other playoff incentive, and four teams still have a shot at the fourth and final playoff berth in the NCAA 93 Juniors Basketball Tournament. Fourth-running Colegio de San Juan de Letran and fifth-running San Sebastian College-Recoletos are still not that far from each other in the playoff race after separate wins on Friday at the Filoil Flying V Centre. The Squires were almost at the wrong end of an upset before digging deep and hacking out an 86-85 overtime victory versus Emilio Aguinaldo College. Neil Tolentino scored 15 points and was backstopped by Enoch Valdez who posted 12 points and nine rebounds. It was the backcourt tandem of Russelle Aniban and Keith Peralta, however, who connived for nine points in the extra period to spark the Squires back into the win column. Standing at 9-6, the Intramuros-based squad remains well within the top four and still within striking distance of the top two. Right behind them are the Staglets who continued their stampede with a 101-91 overtime victory versus Lyceum of the Philippines University. Damie Cuntapay posted monster numbers of 26 points and 19 rebounds as Baste won for the sixth time in a row and for the eighth time in 14 games. The win not only moved San Sebastian forward and closer to the top four, it also dragged down the sixth-running Junior Pirates to 7-8. John Barba led them in the losing effort with 27 points. Yesterday, defending champion Malayan High School of Science re-asserted its mastery over upstart contender College of St. Benilde-La Salle Greenhills, 71-62. Carl Lacap and Joaqui Garcia topped the scoring column with 14 and 13, respectively, but it was the Red Robins’ team effort that fueled their ascent to a still league-leading 12-2. Clint Escamis continued to do it all with 11 points, 14 rebounds, and four assists while twin towers Warren Bonifacio and Will Gozum merged for 14 markers and 17 boards. With the elimination round sweep of their closest competitors thus far in the tournament, the defending champions have now clinched twice-to-beat advantage for the next round. On the other hand, the Junior Blazers suffered their second straight setback and now stand at 10-4. They remain at solo second. Hot on their heels is San Beda High School which exacted revenge on Arellano High School with a resounding rout, 94-65. Luke Sese was the high man with 18 points, but all but one of the 14 Red Cubs sent in contributed at least two points in the scoring column. Now at 9-5, third-running San Beda is breathing down the necks of CSB-LSGH for the only playoff incentive left. The outlook is the opposite for the 6-8 Braves who need to win out in their remaining assignments while also hoping the four teams ahead of them take a stumble. In other results, Jose Rizal High School brought a 35-point beatdown to University of Perpetual Help, 86-51. BOX SCORES FIRST GAME, FRIDAY JRU 86 – Tolentino 17, Serrano 16, Caballero 12, Amores 8, Camua 7, Vasquez 7, Dionisio 6, Buno 5, Sicat 4, Buazon 4, Sabado 0 PERPETUAL 51 – Razon 16, Gallano 10, Umali 8, Cuevas 4, Romilla 4, Siegue 3, De Leon 3, Duka 0, Rocero 0, Inliwan 0, Bongay 0, Maneze 0, Sta. Teresa 0, Cajayon 0, Jaucian 0 QUARTER SCORES: 24-12, 47-28, 71-40, 86-51 SECOND GAME, FRIDAY LETRAN 86 – Tolentino 15, Valdez 12, Aniban 11, Peralta 8, Cordero 7, Monje 6, Culanay 6, Montes 5, Ganapathy 4, Tamayo 4, Reyson 2, Guarino 2, Fuentes 2, Tabajen 2, Labrador 0 EAC 85 – Cruz 22, Castillo 19, Satillian 18, Mananquil 8, Boado 6, Oriondo 6, Matilde 3, Ligot 3, Mostoles 0, Tapales 0 QUARTER SCORES: 20-13, 40-27, 56-53, 74-74, 86-85 (OT)   FIRST GAME, THURSDAY SAN BEDA 94 – Sese 18, Nelle 14, Abu Hijleh 12, Tagala 11, Mahinay 9, Alfaro 8, Etrata 4, Nayve 4, Obenza 3, Velasquez 3, Lagumen 3, Oliva 3, Garcia 2, Dela Rosa 0 ARELLANO 65 – Camacho 15, Segura 11, Fornis 10, Codinera 6, Espiritu 5, Bataller 5, Velasco 5, Fermin 4, Camarillo 2, Domingo 1, Tamayo 1, De Leon 0, Rivera 0, Liangco 0 QUARTER SCORES: 21-19, 39-33, 68-51, 94-65 SECOND GAME, THURSDAY MALAYAN 71 – Lacap 14, Garcia 13, Escamis 11, Sapinit 9, Bonifacio 8, Gozum 6, Enriquez 4, Jabel 4, Socias 2, Arches 0 CSB-LSGH 62 – Cagulangan 15, Marcos 14, Fornilos 12, Pedrosa 5, Lao 4, David 3, Mosqueda 3, Lepalam 2, Cruz 2, Perez 2, Sangco 0, Bordeos 0, Dela Cruz 0 QUARTER SCORES: 22-17, 38-37, 50-52, 71-62 --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 29th, 2017

Semis-bound Ateneo stakes unbeaten card

Already assured of spot in the semifinals, Ateneo de Manila University now sets its eyes on moving closer to completing an elimination round sweep of the men’s division of the inaugural Premier Volleyball League Collegiate Conference on Saturday at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. The Blue Eagles put their unbeaten slate on the line against De La Salle University at 8:00 a.m. Ateneo parades a 5-0 win-loss record and occupies the first seat in the best-of-three semis. The Katipunan-based squad is coming off a 25-18, 25-18, 25-18, win against University of the Philippines a week ago. But it won’t be an easy assignment for the Blue Eagles as they will take on a team fresh from back-to-back victories. The Green Spikers shot down San Beda College, 25-16, 23-25, 25-16, 32-30, a week ago for a 3-2 slate. A win by DLSU will give the Taft-based squad at least a semis spot playoff. Meanwhile, National University and UP square off at 10:00 a.m. to boost their Final Four bids. The Bulldogs are at fourth spot with a 2-3 slate while the Fighting Maroons are tied with San Beda College at sixth to seventh with 1-3 card.   ---   Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 22nd, 2017

Squires keep streaking with sixth straight, keep Braves reeling

strong>STANDINGS /strong> br /> CSB-LSGH 10-2 br /> Malayan 10-2 br /> Letran 8-4 br /> San Beda 7-5 br /> San Sebastian 5-6 br /> Arellano 5-7 br /> LPU 5-7 br /> Perpetual 4-7 br /> JRU 4-8 br /> EAC 1-1 It has been more than a month since Colegio de San Juan de Letran last lost in the NCAA 93 Juniors Basketball Tournament. Niel Tolentino and Lakksman Ganapathy made sure that wasn’t changing on Tuesday at the Filoil Flying V Centre, showing the way for the Squires as they successfully defended their winning steak against determined Arellano High School via a 65-58 victory. The Intramuros-based squad last lost on August 4 for a 2-4 standing. Since then, they have rang off six consecutive victories to grab and then keep hold of solo third. “Nakuha na nila yung sistema e. Naintindihan na nila kung anong kailangan namin,” head coach Raymond Valenzona said. This is a marked improvement for a team which won just seven of 18 games a season ago. “Pero ang Final Four pa rin ang goal namin, siyempre,” Valenzona said. The better showing was yet again in display in this one as Valenzona’s boys took charge right from the get-go and never trailed. Of course, the Braves slowly but surely crept back to within 55-60 inside the last two minutes only to see Niel Tolentino’s layup right through the defense of MVP leader Aaron Fermin spark Letran’s 5-2 charge to close the contest. In the end, Tolentino had 13 points, seven rebounds, and two assists while Lakksman Ganapathy provided the backup with a 13-point, 12-rebound double-double.. With the win, the Squires gained more separation from archrival San Beda High School which stands at solo fourth with a 7-5 record. They also remain within striking distance of the top two spots occupied by both 10-2 Malayan High School of Science and College of St. Benilde-La Salle Greenhills. On the other hand, Arellano is now essentially in a must-win situation after dropping its third in a row. At 5-7, they are tied for the sixth spot with Lyceum of the Philippine University. Fred Segura led them in the losing effort with 25 points while Fermin tallied 11 points, 16 rebounds, and seven blocks. Meanwhile, Jose Rizal High School finally took down a non-contender, dispatching Emilio Aguinaldo College, 92-85. Toby Agustin topped the scoring column with 26 points as the Light Bombers registered their fourth win in 12 games. This adds to their upsets of San Beda, Malayan, and Arellano. The loss dropped the Brigadiers to 1-11. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 19th, 2017