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UAAP 82: UST opens double championship defense

University of Sto. Tomas opens quest for another golden double in the UAAP Season 82 Beach Volleyball tournament Sunday at Sands SM By The Bay. Ushering the post-Sisi Rondina era, the Tigresses will set in motion their bid for a fourth consecutive crown against University of the Philippines at 10:40 a.m. UST begins its back-to-back men's title bid against National University in an early showdown of favorites at 8 a.m., before returning in the afternoon session with a 1:20 p.m. duel with University of the East. Babylove Barbon, last season's top rookie who is more than ready to carry the Tigresses torch in the years to come, will have Gen Eslapor as her new partner. Setting its sights for a record seventh championship overall, UST will have to do it without Rondina, who has already completed her checkered collegiate career in the sand court. In her five years with the Tigresses, four-time MVP Rondina gave her school four titles. A perennial contender in the highly-popular Beach Volleyball Republic On Tour and were among the Philippine representatives in the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Boracay Open 1-Star last May, Barbon and Eslapor are looking good to continue UST's dominance in the sport.  Derie Virtusio will be the third player. Jaron Requinton, who with Krung Arbasto put the Growling Tigers back in the throne last year, will have Efraem Dimaculangan as his partner. De La Salle hopes to give UST a run for its money behind Tin Tiamzon and rookie Justine Jazareno. The Lady Spikers will play their season opener versus the Lady Bulldogs at 11:20 a.m. Together with Michelle Morente, Tiamzon led De La Salle to a runner-up finish last year. The Lady Maroons will have a brand new set of players, with Rosie Rosier, Euricka Eslapor and alternate Noreen Estrellanes hoping to sustain their podium finishes that Isa Molde, Justin Dorog and Tots Carlos gave in the last two years. In other season-opening matches, Ateneo, with Ponggay Gaston and rookie Roma Mae Doromal in tow, goes up against Far Eastern University at 12 noon, before Adamson University and UE caps first day of women's action at 12:40 p.m. Seeking to rebound from last year's third place finish, the Bulldogs will bank on James Natividad and James Buytrago. Incidentally, UST and NU are tied for the most number of men's titles with four. The Bulldogs' other opening day opponent will be Ateneo at 2:40 p.m. FEU's Jude Garcia and Doy Barrica will be one of the Tigers' biggest threats for the crown as the last season's second placers tackle Adamson University at 8:40 a.m. and UP at 2 p.m. Other men's morning matches are UE-Ateneo at 9:20 a.m. and UP-De La Salle at 10 a.m., while Adamson University-De La Salle will round up opening day action at 3:20 p.m......»»

Category: sportsSource: abscbn abscbnSep 21st, 2019

UAAP beach volleyball: UST on track in double title defense

MANILA, Philippines – University of Santo Tomas (UST) remains on course for another double championship in the men's and women's divisions of the UAAP Season 82 beach volleyball tournament.  The Golden Tigresses swept the elimination round for a perfect 7-0 record as Babylove Barbon and Gen Eslapor made quick work of De La ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsOct 2nd, 2019

10 NCAA players to watch in Season 95

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

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 27th, 2019

Ateneo tower Kouame cherishing chance to go toe-to-toe with CEU pillar Diouf

Cignal-Ateneo bounced back big-time in Game 3 of the 2019 PBA D-League Finals following an upset loss to move one win away from the championship. At the forefront of that mighty rebound was Ivorian tower Ange Kouame who made his presence felt all over for 10 points, nine blocks, and seven rebounds. Personally, it was also a bounce back game for the UAAP 81 Rookie of the Year after he got outplayed by CEU counterpart Maodo Malick Diouf in Game 2. "I just had to come strong from the other game because I was really quiet the last game. I wanted to play better for my teammates," he said. While Kouame had 14 points, 10 rebounds, and three blocks then, he also allowed Diouf to impose his will to the tune of 23 markers, 16 boards, four steals, two rejections, and two assists. Of course, Blue Eagles mentor Tab Baldwin challenged all of his players, not just their 21-year-old big man, to play better. "Coach told me that defense wasn't really great (in Game 2). He was complaining about all of us - not just me, but everybody," the latter recalled. And without a doubt, it was Kouame who was the first to answer the call - and in the end of Game 3, the Scorpions' pillar still had a 19-point, 20-rebound double-double, but had to work for all of it. Through the highs and lows in the series, the Cignal-Ateneo center is only grateful to be matched up opposite one of the best foreign student-athletes in college in Diouf. "He really challenges me. I really like the intensity with him because he's pushing me to learn," he said. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 24th, 2019

FRENCH OPEN 19: Serena Williams tries again for 24th major

By Howard Fendrich, Associated Press Women to watch at the French Open, where play begins Sunday: ___ NAOMI OSAKA Ranked: 1 Country: Japan Age: 21 2019 Match Record: 19-5 2019 Singles Titles: 1 Career Singles Titles: 3 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 2 — Australian Open (2019), U.S. Open (2018) Last 5 French Opens: 2018-Lost in 3rd Round, 2017-1st, 2016-3rd, 2015-Did Not Play, 2014-DNP Aces: After going only 5-4 on clay last year, heads to Paris with a 7-1 mark on the surface in 2019. ... Withdrew with injuries from tournaments in Stuttgart (abdominal muscle) and Rome (thumb). Topspin: Big hitting carried her to two Grand Slam titles in a row on hard courts. Clay presents different challenges. ___ SIMONA HALEP Ranked: 3 Country: Romania Age: 27 2019 Match Record: 23-8 2019 Singles Titles: 0 Career Singles Titles: 18 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 1 — French Open (2018) Last 5 French Opens: 2018-Won Championship, 2017-Runner-Up, 2016-4th, 2015-2nd, 2014-RU Aces: Among the WTA's top 10 in break points converted and first-serve percentage in 2019. ... Pulled out of Italian Open with hamstring problem, but said she was sure she'd be OK for Paris. Topspin: Tries to defend a Grand Slam title for the first time. Her movement and defense-to-offense skills have carried her to three of the past five finals at Roland Garros. ___ KIKI BERTENS Ranked: 4 Country: Netherlands Age: 27 2019 Match Record: 26-10 2019 Singles Titles: 2 Career Singles Titles: 9 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 0 — Best: SF, French Open (2016) Last 5 French Opens: 2018-3rd, 2017-2nd, 2016-SF, 2015-1st, 2014-4th Aces: Ranks in the tour's top two in aces and service points won this season. ... Hit 20 aces in one match. ... At past three clay events, went semifinals-title-semifinals. Topspin: Has the game and the confidence to go far in Paris. Many in tennis think she is ready to play well deep into the second week at a major tournament. ___ PETRA KVITOVA Ranked: 6 Country: Czech Republic Age: 29 2019 Match Record: 28-8 2019 Singles Titles: 2 Career Singles Titles: 27 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 2 — Wimbledon (2011, 2014) Last 5 French Opens: 2018-3rd, 2017-2nd, 2016-3rd, 2015-4th, 2014-3rd Aces: Pulled out of Rome with a left calf issue. ... Is third on tour in aces this year, but also has hit by far the most double-faults. Topspin: Since getting to the 2012 semifinals at Roland Garros, only has been past the third round once. Her strong lefty strokes and recent form on clay could mean that changes this year. ___ SLOANE STEPHENS Ranked: 7 Country: United States Age: 26 2019 Match Record: 14-9 2019 Singles Titles: 0 Career Singles Titles: 6 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 1 — U.S. Open (2017) Last 5 French Opens: 2018-RU, 2017-DNP, 2016-3rd, 2015-4th, 2014-4th Aces: Recently hired coach Sven Groeneveld, who has worked with such past French Open champions as Maria Sharapova and Ana Ivanovic. Topspin: Run to last year's final in Paris showed that Stephens is capable of winning a Grand Slam championship on clay to go with her hard-court title from the U.S. Open. ___ ASH BARTY Ranked: 8 Country: Australia Age: 23 2019 Match Record: 24-5 2019 Singles Titles: 1 Career Singles Titles: 4 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 0 — Best: QF, Australian Open (2019) Last 5 French Opens: 2018-2nd, 2017-1st, 2016-DNP, 2015-DNP, 2014-1st Aces: After going 1-6 against top-10 opponents in 2018, she is 6-4 in those matches in 2019. ... Played cricket while away from the tour for nearly two years after the 2014 U.S. Open. Topspin: After major breakthroughs at the Australian Open in January and when she collected the title at the Miami Open in March, seems poised to show big improvement on her 2-5 career record at the French Open. ___ SERENA WILLIAMS Ranked: 10 Country: United States Age: 37 2019 Match Record: 7-2 2019 Singles Titles: 0 Career Singles Titles: 72 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 23 — French Open (2002, 2013, 2015), Australian Open (2003, 2005, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2015, 2017), Wimbledon (2002, 2003, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2015, 2016), U.S. Open (1999, 2002, 2008, 2012, 2013, 2014) Last 5 French Opens: 2018-4th, 2017-DNP, 2016-RU, 2015-W, 2014-2nd Aces: Back in the top 10 this year after dropping out of the top 400 while away from the tour to have a baby. ... After missing about 1½ years of majors, reached two Grand Slam finals in 2018. ... Pulled out of last two tournaments because of injured left knee. Topspin: Comes to Paris with only one clay-court match since last year's French Open. There's also uncertainty about the status of her knee. So while she's always considered a favorite, no matter the site or surface, when she is healthy, it is hard to know what to expect from her this time around......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 23rd, 2019

Ateneo eyes another golden double in swimming

Reigning MVPs Jessie Lacuna and Hannah Dato hope to lead Ateneo in completing another championship double as the UAAP Season 79 swimming competitions opens tomorrow at the Rizal Memorial Swimming Pool. br />         br /> .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 19th, 2016

SUPER SHOWDOWN: La Salle s Justine Baltazar v Letran s Larry Muyang

Almost two decades ago, the power of Pinatubo was felt all over the Philippines. Now in 2019, two towers from Pampanga are making their presence felt in the premiere collegiate leagues of the country. De La Salle University's Justine Baltazar and Colegio de San Juan de Letran's Larry Muyang are the undisputed best local big men in the UAAP and in the NCAA, respectively. Baltazar has done a stand up job replacing Cameroonian MVP Ben Mbala while Muyang has made sure the Knights are no longer pushovers in the paint. So what happens when an irresistible force like Baltazar collides with an immovable object like Muyang? That's what we're here to find out in the second edition of the Super Showdown as we pit Philippine collegiate basketball's top Filipino centers against one another - judging them in five categories (post scoring, perimeter scoring, rebounding, defense, and playmaking) with a boxing-style 10-point must system determining the decision. POST SCORING These two learned from one of the best in the business in so-called big man whisperer Jeff Napa. Napa discovered and then developed Baltazar in Nazareth-NU and then harnessed the potential of Muyang in Letran. When it all boils down to it, though, Muyang's bulk is just perfect for the back to the basket game and he has honed his skills so much that even the likes of Cameroonians Donald Tankoua and Mike Nzeusseu have a tough time bodying him up. Baltazar is no slouch posting up, make no mistake, but his lankier frame is also not that much of a problem for bigger defenders such as Nigerian Bright Akhuetie or Senegalese Alex Diakhite. Letan's big boy has a big body in need of big sustenance - and it just so happens that he can do just that by feasting inside the paint. Advantage, Muyang, 10-9 PERIMETER SCORING Put simply, Baltazar is a threat from outside while Muyang is not - not yet, at the very least. La Salle's versatile center has the touch to take and make shots from long-range as well as mid-range. In fact, he already has five triples to his name in eight games in the season. On the other hand, Letran calls for its hulking center to make a living down low and, as such, he has not had that many chances to show off his shooting. More than that, Baltazar is the prototype for the modern big man - a tall, long-limbed, and agile giant who needs to be defended even when he's standing behind the arc. Advantage, Baltazar, 10-9 REBOUNDING Baltazar just had for himself a 25-point, 25-rebound double-double. In terms of cleaning up the glass in the UAAP, nobody is better aside from the foreign student-athletes, with his norms of 12.5 rebounds the fourth-best in all of the league. Muyang inhales his fair share of rebounds, but also lags behind in terms of cleaning up his teammates' misses. Of course, the simple explanation is that La Salle just has the more athletic big man compared of Letran's more ground-bound behemoth. Advantage, Baltazar, 10-9 DEFENSE Rim protection has always been Baltazar's elite skill - even when he was just a raw prospect as a Bullpup. Now, he has blossomed into a menace patrolling the paint and his mere presence can alter shots, if not swat them away all the way. And because he is more ground-bound, Muyang was never one to host a block party, but he more than holds his own inside thanks to his bulk. Bottom line, though, La Salle can actually boast of having the more well-rounded two-way player. Advantage, Baltazar, 10-9 PLAYMAKING Muyang is such a force down low that he attracts double and triple-teams. As such, he always has a golden opportunity to make plays for his teammates and, more often than not, makes the right plays. After all, it wasn't that long ago that Muyang, along with Jeo Ambohot, Christian Fajarito, and Bong Quinto, all clogged the paint, but still had many, many assists to share among them. This is then the department where Baltazar has the biggest room for improvement as he only has a total of eight assists in the season. Advantage, Muyang 10-9 FINAL SCORE, 48-47 for La Salle's Justine Baltazar.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 10th, 2019

UAAP 82: Baltazar records 25-25 as La Salle runs roughshod over National U

Justine Baltazar towered above all with a dominant double-double of 25 points and 25 rebounds, Sunday at MOA Arena, and towed De La Salle University to a 85-61 beatdown of National University for its first back-to-back wins in the UAAP 82 Men’s Basketball Tournament. The Bulldogs actually scored the game’s first three points before the Green Archers responded with a 26-6 rush for a 26-9 edge after the opening salvo. Just at the half, Baltazar already had a double-double with 15 points and 14 rebounds and he would only put pedal to the metal the rest of the way. The fourth-year center got 10 of his rebounds at the offensive end while also getting two blocks, proving to be too much for the Bulldogs. Andrei Caracut and Jamie Malonzo contributed 16 and 12 points, respectively, as the Taft-based team scored back-to-back wins for the first time in the tournament. "We just wanted a different approach in the second round so our mindset changed," active consultant Jermaine Byrd said post-game. La Salle's defense was just as impressive as they only allowed the Bulldogs to make good on 32.9 percent of their shots and slowed down Dave Ildefonso to just 11 points. Having finally gone streaking, the Green Archers now find themselves at joint third in the standings. On the other hand, National U dropped down even more now at 1-7. Aside from the younger Ildefonso, kuya Shaun was the only other player in double-digits with 10 points. BOX SCORES LA SALLE 85 - Baltazar 25, Caracut 16, Malonzo 12, Lojera 9, Serrano 8, Melecio 6, Bates 4, Manuel 4, Hill 1, Bartlett 0, Escandor 0, Lim 0 NU 61 - Ildefonso D 11, Ildefonso S 10, Diputado 8, Gallego 7, Clemente 5, Galinato 5, Gaye 5, Tibayan 3, Yu 3, Mangayao 2, Minerva 2, Joson 0, Malonzo 0, Oczon 0 QUARTER SCORES: 26-9, 44-24, 65-48- 85-61 —— Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 6th, 2019

Lady Falcons take care of business against Lady Warriors

Adamson shook off a poor start to drub University of the East, 66-56, to open the second round of the UAAP Season 82 Women's Basketball Tournament Saturday at Mall of Asia Arena. Rose Ann Dampios led the Lady Falcons with 24 points built on four triples, to go with five rebounds and three steals. "Malaking bagay si Rose Ann kasi isa siya sa ine-aim ko na tutulong sa team," said coach Ewon Arayi. "Ang ayaw ko lang is how she played defense. Para sa akin, depensa muna bago opensa." Defense was truly the bane for Adamson as a motivated UE side took an early 13-10 lead after the first period. But Dampios and Mar Prado conspired in the Lady Falcons' 24-point second quarter to seize control of the game, 34-27, and eventually pick up the pace in the second half, where they held leads as much as 26. Prado finished with a double-double of 15 points, 11 rebounds, four steals, and two assists, while Lhyn Bilbao got 10 points, three boards, and two assists. Yet Arayi remained far from content from this victory, harping consistency, especially on defense for her side. "Nandito kami to compete. Hindi kami nandito para magpaganda. Sabi ko sana kung gaano kaganda ang sapatos ninyo, ganoon din kaganda ang laro niyo. Dapat walang minuto tayo na sasayangin," she lamented. "Sa UAAP, walang dapat iniismol. Itong panalo na ito, sana it will serve as a lesson sa bawat isa, na pag marunong ka at di ka naka-score, di pwede na di ka dumepensa." Adamson improved to a 5-3 record while dealing UE its third straight loss to send it to a 1-7 slate. Jearzy Ganade led the Lady Warriors with 15 points, seven assists, six rebounds, and two steals, while Princess Pedregosa had 14 points, 11 rebounds, and four dimes. The two, however, accounted for 14 of UE's 32 turnovers that led to its downfall. The Scores: Adamson 66 -- Dampios 24, Prado 15, Bilbao 10, Flor 7, Araja 4, Balane 3, Ei. Alaba 3, Ea. Alaba 0, Anticamara 0, Catulong 0, Dela Cruz 0, Dionela 0, Dumelod 0, Mendoza 0, Ornopia 0, Tandaan 0. UE 56 -- Ganade 15, Pedregosa 14, Cortizano 12, Ordas 6, Nama 4, Cuadero 3, Terrinal 2, Brencis 0, Caraig 0, Fernandez 0, Gaa 0, Gervacio 0, Noquil 0, Paule 0, Raymundo 0, Tinio 0. Quarterscores: 10-13, 34-27, 49-38, 66-56......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 5th, 2019

SUPER SHOWDOWN: La Salle s Aljun Melecio vs. San Sebastian s RK Ilagan

There are point guards - and there are points guards. And both the NCAA and the UAAP have clear-cut examples of just what is a points guard. RK Ilagan has been the fieriest floor leader in all of the NCAA while in the UAAP, Aljun Melecio has been the epitome of a scoring guard. Unfortunately, those two will not be facing off against one another anytime soon - on the court, that is. Because in the return of our Super Showdown, we will be pitting Philippine collegiate basketball's top points guards against one another - judging them in five categories (perimeter scoring, paint scoring, playmaking, defense, and clutch gene) with a boxing-style 10-point must system determining the decision. PERIMETER SCORING Both players are threats from long-range - and not only that, even Steph Curry-range. Where they differ is their effectiveness as through seven games, Melecio already has 16 total threes on 41 attempts for a 39 percent mark. For comparison, Ilagan has 28 triples out of 102 in total for a 27.5 percent clip through 14 games. Of course, Ilagan has also had to deal with a larger share of double teams and defenses keyed in on him as he and Allyn Bulanadi are a two-man show for San Sebastian while Melecio is part of a mean green machine. That is not to say, however, that La Salle's fourth-year guard has not cashed in on more chances from outside than his NCAA counterpart. Advantage, Melecio, 10-9. PAINT SCORING Because they are such a threat from behind the arc, both players always find themselves with a defender right up on them. That gives them a golden opportunity to blitz their way into the lane, though, and at that, both players are also more than capable. Once inside the paint, both players know exactly where to go to create separation for their own shot or create a play for a teammate - and just as important, both players have the upper body strength to go at it with the big boys. Melecio, though, just nudges ahead of Ilagan as, for our taste, the former's patented spin-to-score layups are just a tad prettier than the latter's trademark muscling through for a short stab. Advantage, Melecio, 10-9. PLAYMAKING Any and every opponent's game plan will have both players as one of the top, if not the top, focal points. And so, with defenses always having to keep an eye on them, there are many, many chances for both of them to set up their teammates. Ilagan has been one of the best at this in all of the NCAA, with his 4.4 assists per game the eighth-best in the league. Melecio is no slouch in setting up his fellow Green Archers and averages 3.4 assists a game, but the consistency with which San Sebastian's court general has shown he can do much more than score gives him the edge here. Advantage, Ilagan, 10-9. DEFENSE Ilagan is one of the protagonists for a San Sebastian side that prides itself on physical play. Don't let his 5-foot-10 frame fool you as he will not give an inch and will go all-out all the time for the Golden Stags. The same can be said for Melecio who makes up for his 5-foot-8 stature with a whole lot of energy and effort whatever defensive scheme La Salle is in. Even better, he spent two years enforcing Aldin Ayo's "Mayhem" back in the day so there never was any question he can play D - even full-court D at that. Let's call this even as both these players have proven time and again they aren't taking breaks on defense just because they are key cogs for their offenses. Push, 10-10 CLUTCH GENE It's a toss-up between Ilagan and Bulanadi for San Sebastian on who will have the last shot with the game on the line. Still, between those two, Bulanadi has had more game-winners compared to Ilagan in the NCAA. For his part, Melecio is also yet to have a game-winner for La Salle in the UAAP, but in this season alone, he will have had two already to his name as it was the pint-sized playmaker who gave the Green Archers the lead late in their games against UE and UP before Rey Suerte and Juan Gomez de Liano took it all back. Melecio, though, was also a big part of a game-winning sequence - as he set-up Kurt Lojera's baseline jumper that proved to be the difference for them against National U. Advantage, Melecio, 10-9. FINAL SCORE: 49-47 for La Salle's Aljun Melecio.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 3rd, 2019

New-look Clippers ready to level up beyond Best Team in L.A.

By Shaun Powell, NBA.com LOS ANGELES -- It was almost exactly a year ago when the Clippers welcomed the media on the same day the Lakers debuted LeBron James, and Patrick Beverley told the half-dozen or so reporters who must’ve made a wrong turn: “We’re the best team in L.A.” That bit of bravado went unnoticed and unheard, partly because of the Laker noise, partly because few -- if anyone -- bought it. Of course, Beverley was ultimately proven wise when the Clippers scrapped their way to 48 wins and a pair of first-round wins against the Warriors while LeBron and the Lakers almost literally collapsed from a kick to the groin. With a swell of attention now being paid to presumptive title favorites, who added Paul George and Kawhi Leonard while retaining much of the supporting cast, Beverley was given the chance Sunday (Monday, PHL time) to double down on his prophecy. He toned it down. “We’ll see,” he said. Yet his sinister grin was plain to see, and it reflected the swagger and internal expectations of a franchise not known for through-the-roof projections. Such is the new world order in Los Angeles, and perhaps the NBA, in 2019-20. These are unprecedented times for the Clippers, who’ve had winning teams before but none with this much title twinkle headed into the season. “We know what we’re capable of doing,” said Beverley, and so does everyone else. You don’t add the reigning NBA Finals MVP and another who finished third in the regular-season Kia MVP balloting without shaking up the establishment, even if you’ve never won a championship in franchise history. But there’s a long wait between now and next spring's playoffs, and a shorter one to see George on the floor. The 29-year-old swingman is still in the mending stage after off-season surgery on both shoulders. He said “I’m not sure” when he’ll be ready to play, even with opening night against the Lakers a little over three weeks away. George said he hasn’t had any complications or setbacks, but won’t engage in any contact work in camp and coach Doc Rivers said George will not appear in any games until he does. “There’s no problems,” George said. “I’m just going to do light work and drills for now.” The other issue as it relates to health is Leonard’s usage. Last year in Toronto, still smarting from a persistent quad injury that led to his stormy exit from the Spurs, Leonard didn’t play on consecutive nights during back-to-back games. Rivers said there are no such restrictions this season, or demands from the player, although the coach wants to reserve the right to monitor and change the approach if necessary. "Last year, I was going in with an injury that I was dealing with the year before, still was lingering, and we knew that I had to be healthy going throughout the season and making it to the playoffs,” Leonard said. "This time, I'm feeling good. I’m feeling way better than I was at the start of last season. There really was no plan laid out to discuss with everyone." Rivers also noted that the Clippers’ depth will allow for rest periods for George and Leonard; both players are joining a team that prospered without an All-Star last season, a team that will probably once again bring reigning Sixth Man of the Year Lou Williams and Montrezl Harrell off the bench. In due time, the Clippers will be complete, and that’s the most important takeaway from their first official gathering. The level of enthusiasm is “sky-high,” said Williams. Rivers has flexibility with Leonard and George, widely considered among the most elite two-way players in basketball. On offense, George and Leonard are top-10 league scorers (26.6 points last year for Leonard; 28.0 for George). Playing those two alongside Williams, who averaged 20 points last season in just 26 minutes off the bench, should cause matchup headaches. “We’ll force a lot of defenses to make a lot of hard decisions,” said Williams. And the options afforded to Rivers might even be richer on the other end. Rivers thinks pairing two newcomers plus Beverley -- who guarded Kevin Durant in the playoffs, while giving away seven inches -- can be “special.” Utilizing three players who can legitimately guard multiple positions, the Clippers’ defense could be epic, if not historic. George said: “It’s going to be scary … we’ve really got a chance to do something special on the defensive end. Watching Pat get out there and picking somebody up 94 feet, that's going to get me going. It's going to get Kawhi going. It's just going to become contagious on a nightly basis. I honestly think, for the first time, people are going to be excited to watch the defensive end as opposed to watching the offensive end.” The makings of a unique season, then, is on deck for the Clippers. It became realistic when Leonard, fresh off a title in Toronto, chose George and the Clippers over LeBron James and Anthony Davis and the Lakers — which, in itself, seems un-Clipper-like given the club’s former reputation and history, when superstars were once allergic to L.A.’s "other" basketball team. But these are new times. “We actually wanted to be teammates for a long time,” said George. “This was always in the works to happen at some point.” From the top of the organization to the bottom, everyone knows the potential and just the same, would rather allow a scenario to play itself out than speak it into existence. That’s why Beverley provided the most unexpected news of camp by playing it coy. But you knew where he stood. “Can’t wait to get started,” he said, echoing the thoughts of a locker room thinking big. Shaun Powell has covered the NBA for more than 25 years. You can e-mail him here, find his archive here, and follow him on Twitter. The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or Turner Broadcasting. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 30th, 2019

UAAP 82: UP clamps down on Suerte to claim third straight W

ANTIPOLO - The University of the Philippines did not try its luck, Saturday at Ynares Center here, pulling out all the stops to cool down Rey Suerte before pulling off a 62-56 triumph over University of the East. The Fighting Maroons set all of their sights on Suerte, the one-and-done star who has taken the UAAP 82 Men's Basketball Tournament by storm, to score their third consecutive victory and fourth overall in five games. "Our intention was really to limit his output," head coach Bo Perasol said post-game. At the other end, Javi Gomez de Liano waxed hot from the get-go, firing seven of his 15 points in State U's blazing 12-3 beginning. Bright Akhuetie and Kobe Paras then joined in on the fun as UP built up a lead of as much as 13 in the second quarter. The Red Warriors regrouped at the half, however, and even came as close as one point, 56-57, inside the last two minutes. It was at that point that Paras found a wide open Jaydee Tungcab at the corner who wasted no time swishing home the triple. That, as well as a split from the stripe and then a defense that allowed no more makes finished off the Fighting Maroons' wire-to-wire win that keeps them at solo second. Paras wound up with a 12-point, 10-rebound double-double while Akhuetie stuffed the stat sheet with 16 markers, five boards, three assists, three steals, and a block. Tungcab also added four points all while serving as the primary defender to Suerte who was frustrated to only four makers in 2-of-15 shooting to go along with four turnovers. "In the end, it was Jaydee that saved us with his three in the corner and his game-long brilliance in defending Rey Suerte helped us a lot," coach Bo said. Ricci Rivero, Noah Webb, David Murrell, and James Spencer also did their part against the talented transferee from University of Visayas who was coming off a 31-point outing against De La Salle University, including the game-winner. In Suerte's stead, Senegalese powerhouse Alex Diakhite paced UE with monster numbers of 21 points, 17 rebounds, and five assists. Missing their main man, though, they were unable to build on their breakthrough win and dropped down to 1-4. BOX SCORES UP 62 - Akhuetie 16, Ja. Gomez de Liano 15, Paras 12, Rivero 7, Tungcab 4, Ju. Gomez de Liano 3, Manzo 3, Webb 2, Murrell 0, Prado 0, Spencer 0. UE 56 - Diakhite 21, Abanto 9, Tolentino 8, Antiporda 6, Pagsanjan 6, Suerte 4, Cruz 2, Manalang 0, Mendoza 0, Natividad 0. QUARTER SCORES: 23-15, 39-27, 46-42, 62-56. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 21st, 2019

Ateneo gets job done vs FEU for 4-0 start to UAAP 82

Ateneo de Manila University had no problems whatsoever against Far Eastern University for a wire-to-wire 63-46 win that extended its unbeaten start to the UAAP 82 Men's Basketball Tournament, Saturday at MOA Arena. The Blue Eagles went on an 11-0 run to start the game and never looked back to remain unscathed through four games in its title defense. Ange Kouame powered the engine with a 14-point, 12-rebound double-double while Thirdy Ravena had his own 12 markers and 10 boards. Adrian Wong also turned in his best game of the season with 13 points on top of five assists as the defending champions started strong with 11 unanswered points after tip-off and which then became an 18-3 edge early. Their advantage would only go as high as 19 as their defense stood strong all throughout, stifling their opponents to only 29 percent shooting from the field. "Credit to our boys for the defense they played against FEU. That was not easy," head coach Tab Baldwin said post-game. Indeed, Ateneo forced the Tamaraws to 17 turnovers which they quickly converted into 18 points. Of all players, though, it was Will Navarro who received the highest praise from his mentor. "We have to give credit to Will Navarro," the former said of the latter who only had four points to his name, but was a +30 in all of the game. For FEU, Barkley Ebona and Xyrus Torres topped the scoring column with eight points apiece. Unable to get going, however, they dropped to 1-2 in the standings. BOX SCORES ATENEO 63 - Kouame 14, Wong 13, Ravena 12, Mi. Nieto 4,Navarro 4, Mamuyac 3, Ma. Nieto 3, Tio 3, Belangel 2, Daves 2, Go 2, Maagdenberg 1, Andrade 0, Chiu 0, Credo 0, Mallillin 0. FEU 46 - Ebona 8, Torres 8, Comboy 6, Gonzales 6, Nunag 5, Bienes 4, Tuffin 3, Alforque 2, Tempra 2, Cani 1, Tchuente 1, Celzo 0, Dulatre 0, Mantua 0, Stockton 0. QUARTER SCORES: 18-6, 23-15, 47-32, 63-46. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 14th, 2019

Lady Bulldogs open UAAP 82 with 81st win in a row

National University annexed its immaculate run to 81 straight wins with an 80-60 conquest over Far Eastern University, Wednesday in the UAAP Season 82 women's basketball tournament at Araneta Coliseum. Jack Animam tallied 17 points, 12 rebounds, and three assists to lead the five-time champions in the triumph. Congolese center Rhena Itesi also did damage with 16 points, six boards, and three assists, as rookies Angel Surada, who had 10 points, six rebounds, three assists, and two steals, and Camille Clarin, who tallied 10 points, three boards, and three dimes, also impressed in their debuts. The win, however, left a lot to be desired for coach Pat Aquino as the Lady Bulldogs' lackadaisical defense saw them trail, 43-48 in the third frame. "It was a hard win, rusty probably, overconfident, but the thing is we have to play double time against FEU," he said. "Our players are still hesitant. We're coming up with a new system and they're still hesitant with that, but I just told them to play as hard as you can and everything will follow. That's what happened," he continued. NU shook off those struggles and outscored FEU, 28-10, in the fourth frame to take the 20-point win. Fil-Am forward Kelli Hayes, who previously played for the UCLA Bruins, contributed four points, three rebounds, three steals, and two assists in her NU debut. Clare Castro led FEU with 24 points, 10 rebounds, and five blocks, while Valerie Mamaril poured 16 points and two boards in the loss. BOX SCORES NU 80 -- Animam 17, Itesi 16, Surada 10, Clarin 10, Bartolo 8, Pingol 6, Del Carmen 5, Hayes 4, Canuto 4, Harada 0, Fabruada 0, Cacho 0, Cac 0. FEU 60 -- Castro 24, Mamaril 16, Delos Santos 10, Quiapo 4, Jumuad 4, Bahuyan 2, Vidal 0, Padayon 0, Adriano 0, Bastatas 0, Antiola 0. QUARTER SCORES: 16-17, 22-25, 52-50, 80-60......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 4th, 2019

No surprise: USA tops Czechs 88-67 to open World Cup

By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press SHANGHAI (AP) — Donovan Mitchell scored 16 points, Harrison Barnes added 14 and the U.S. opened its quest for a third consecutive FIBA World Cup gold medal with an 88-67 victory over the Czech Republic on Sunday. Kemba Walker scored 13 points and Jayson Tatum finished with 10 for the Americans, who pulled away steadily throughout. Myles Turner had seven rebounds and a pair of blocked shots for the U.S. Tomas Satoransky, the former Washington guard who was traded to Chicago over the summer, led the Czechs with 17 points. While the Americans’ 78-game winning streak in international games with NBA players ended last month with a loss at Australia, their long winning streak in major tournaments continued. It’s now at 54 games, starting with the bronze-medal game of the 2006 world championships and continuing with gold-medal runs at the 2007 FIBA Americas, 2008 Olympics, 2010 world championships, 2012 Olympics, 2014 World Cup and 2016 Olympics. The Czechs scored the first four points of the fourth quarter to get within 66-52, but the Americans weren’t threatened. Walker made a 3-pointer to stop the mini-run, found Mitchell in the corner for another 3-pointer that made it 72-52 about a minute later and the outcome was academic from there. The Czechs had their highlight run early for a quick 11-7 lead, and the couple thousand of their fans in Shanghai — most of them wearing either white or blue team jerseys, with a few Wizards jerseys for Satoransky mixed in there — were roaring. It didn’t last long. After a 9-0 run by the Czechs, order was quickly restored. The Americans scored the next 10 points, kick-starting what became a 29-9 run in all, and led by as many as 16 before going into the half with a 43-29 edge. And it was defense that carried the Americans. Over a 10-minute stretch of the half, the Czechs went 4 for 20 with seven turnovers. TIP-INS Czech Republic: This was the first World Cup game for the Czechs since 1982, when the tournament was called the world championship and the country was still Czechoslovakia. That nation went 0-3 against the U.S. in past world championship matchups. ... Jaromir Bohacik and Vojtech Hruban each scored 13. U.S.: The Americans started Walker, Mitchell, Tatum, Barnes and Turner. ... Mason Plumlee, the only player back from the U.S. 2014 World Cup gold-medal team, was the only player not in U.S. coach Gregg Popovich’s initial 11-man rotation Sunday. Plumlee got his first action in the third quarter. ... Walker made all five of his 2-point tries. FAST STARTERS This is the 18th FIBA World Cup or world championship — and for the 18th consecutive time, the U.S. has started 1-0. All but four of those opening wins were by double digits; the closest ones were a 37-33 win over Chile in the inaugural event in 1950, an 81-73 victory over Argentina in 1959, a 77-75 win over Australia in 1978 and a 103-95 victory over Greece in 1990. The average margin of victory: 22.6 points. FASHION STATEMENT Popovich and the U.S. staff wore red polos — Popovich and assistant coach Steve Kerr went untucked — and blue pants. The Czech coaches all had on dark suits, unusual for polo-preferring FIBA coaches (Canada’s Nick Nurse went with a gray crewneck sweatshirt earlier Sunday), but ditched the dress shoes for sneakers. MORE TALENT It’s the biggest World Cup ever — 32 teams — and that means there’s more NBA representation in the tournament than ever before as well. There are 54 NBA players from 17 countries in the World Cup. At the last World Cup in 2014, a 24-team event, there were 45 NBA players. UP NEXT Czech Republic: Faces Japan (0-1) on Tuesday in Shanghai. U.S.: Faces Turkey (1-0) on Tuesday in Shanghai......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 1st, 2019

PBA: Terrence Jones pinpoints defense as main issue in TNT collapse

Talk N' Text was essentially 12 minutes away from holding a 3-2 lead in the 2019 PBA Commissioner's Cup Finals.  The KaTropa had a commanding 16-point advantage in the opening moments of fourth quarter and appeared primed to regain the advantage in the conference-ending series.  Instead, Talk N' Text saw that advantage disappear, allowing the San Miguel Beermen to steal Game 5, 99-94, and move one win away from yet another championship.  In the final stretch of the game, with the Beermen breathing down their necks, the KaTropa had a number of chances to create a bit of separation but just couldn't convert on their chances.  What's more is that they could not stop the SMB onslaught on the defensive end, which was the main concern for KaTropa import Terrence Jones.  "We just didn’t get stops when we needed to," Jones said following the loss. "We needed two more stops and we didn’t, so that’s what happens. We lost." Jones, the newly-crowned Best Import of the conference, was his usual dominant self, putting up 35 points, pulling down 17 rebounds, and dishing out eight assists.  In crunch time however, Jones was unable to finish on a couple of chances that could have swung the game in their favor.  "It was a well-fought game. They made their runs and we made ours, we just got to try to make sure we take care of business next game," he added.  When the question of fatigue was brought up, Jones maintained that it was simply all about getting the necessary stops to close out the game.  "I’m not a person that makes excuses, so, it just comes down to stops to win the game, and they scored and we didn’t." "We just didn’t score, man. I mean, I got to where I wanted to, where I’ve been shooting my lay-ups from, on the left side, most of the series, it just didn’t go in, and we didn’t get stops. Winning championships is about defense. We had the lead, and we gave it up by not getting stops. I think that’s what it boils down to, and we got to make sure we take care of that in the entire fourth quarter so it doesn’t come down to that," he continued. In the final period, Jones was held to just three points, and while he did credit the Beermen for their defense, it was the KaTropa's defense, or lack thereof, during the closing sequences that Jones feels needs to be addressed.  "Mainly, importantly to me is our defense. We were up with a double-digit lead in the fourth and gave that away, which even caused us to be in that situation, which is more of the bigger standpoint to me, and hopefully we can take care of that." Now down in a 3-2 hole, the KaTropa are in do-or-die mode from here on out, and the former Houston Rocket made it clear that he wasn't ready to go down.  "Exactly like you said, either win or be done, and I’m not ready to be done. I hope my teammates aren’t ready to be done, and we come in and we play with that attitude," Game 6 will be on Friday at the Araneta Coliseum. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 14th, 2019

Captain CJ Cansino? Better believe it in UAAP 82, UST

University of Sto. Tomas will be heading into the UAAP 82 Men's Basketball Tournament with a whole lot of optimism. Aside from big-time recruits, the Growling Tigers are also all set to welcome back with open arms a CJ Cansino who has fully recovered from an ACL tear. "Naglalaro na siya, actually. Almost two or three weeks na nga siya nagpa-practice," head coach Aldin Ayo shared about the recovery of their prized ward. Even better, there could be no fear that Cansino wouldn’t be back to his good old talented self. "(Hindi) lilimitahan yung minuto kasi we made sure na pagbalik niya, full blast na lahat. We made sure na pagbalik niya, he's really ready to play," he said. Last year, his first in the UAAP Srs., the 6-foot-2 swingman did nothing but impress by posting per game counts of 12.8 points in 44 percent shooting, 10.3 rebounds, and 3.6 assists before injuring his knee. Prior to that, he also became the first rookie since 2003 to tally a triple-double. Without a doubt, UST's future looked like it hinged on its homegrown talent. And even after the ACL tear, coach Aldin still believes as much - so much so that he has named the sophomore star as team captain. "Siya lang ang sophomore na captain ball. We have a lot of leaders like si Renzo [Subido], si Enrique [Caunan], si Zach Huang who's the co-captain, pero si CJ, buo na yung batang yun e," he said. He then continued, "Although he's a sophomore, yung respeto sa kanya ng team, nandoon na and I have no doubt he can lead us." For his part, the 19-year-old said he is nothing but grateful for the full faith his one-time NCAA and one-time UAAP champion coach has in him. "Una sa lahat, siyempre masaya ako kasi binigyan ako ni coach ng responsibility na maging team captain kahit sophomore pa lang ako, pero at the same time, binigyan niya ako ng confidence dahil sa dami ng players, ako pa yung napili niya," he said. Now he is the official leader of the Growling Tigers, Cansino has but one promise for the faithful over at Espana. "Siyempre, gusto ko ma-lead yung team sa mga panalo at sa championship. Gagawin ko lahat nang makakaya ko every game at every practice para matulungan yung coaching staff pati yung teammates ko para mag-grow kami lahat hanggang maabot namin yung goal namin," he said. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 12th, 2019

PVL: I have to prove myself – Manilla Santos-Ng

Returning Manilla Santos-Ng has to reintroduce herself. The volleyball legend may have an impressive résumé under her belt but after a decade removed from competitive play, Santos-Ng will have to start from scratch. It’s like her rookie year with De La Salle University all over again. Santos-Ng is staging a comeback since her last stint in the UAAP in 2009 after signing up with newcomer ChocoMucho in the Premier Volleyball League Season 3 Open Conference. “It’s 10 years ago [since I last played]. Sa totoo lang, I consider myself a rookie in this pro-league, bago lang ako,” said the four-time UAAP champion. Just like other newbies, Santos-Ng, who during her time in the UAAP was known for her high-leaping exploits, high-octane offense and solid floor defense, has to vie for playing time under head coach Oliver Almadro. “I really have to prove myself also kung talagang karapa’t dapat kang makalaro,” said Santos-Ng. “Kung maglalaro ka go, if you can contribute go. If not, maybe in some other ways like inspiring the kids.” Santos-Ng has to compete against her younger and taller teammates to convince Alamdro for minutes. And earning her playing time won’t be easy for the 34-year old, 5-foot-4 hitter in a Flying Titans team stacked with young and very talented wing spikers in Kat Tolentino, Shang Berte, Carla Sandoval, Bang Pineda, Cindy Imbo, Shannen Palec and Gyra Barroga.    It’s a big challenge that Santos-Ng knows she has to face. “One thing I like about Coach Oliver is that he’s very honest with us,” said the UAAP Season 71 Most Valuable Player, who played under Almadro back when the mentor worked as deputy to DLSU head coach Ramil De Jesus.   “Kilala ko rin siya na, 'Hindi porke’t kilala kita bibigyan kita ng spot,'” she added. Santos-Ng also acknowledges that she has to work double time to adapt to this generation’s level of play and try to bring back if not exceed her vintage form.    “Honestly speaking may pressure because people are expecting a lot,” said Santos-Ng, who knows very well the hype that was built in her return. “But as I said, I consider myself a rookie here. Naga-adjust pa ako.” The three-time UAAP Best Receiver decided to come back to fulfill her son Kenzi's wish of seeing her in action. “When I decided to come back, I started losing weight muna, low impact. Adaptive phase kasi matagal akong di nakapaglaro tapos nagdyi-gym ako,” she said. Santos-Ng then trained with ChocoMucho’s sister-team Creamline for a few months. “I told my husband I need court skills also so he said since affiliated naman siya sa Rebisco, he asked the management and the management is gracious enough to accept me to train with them,” Santos-Ng said. “And then during training, there was a new team being formed under Coach Oliver. Sinabi ko naman if I could join sa ChocoMucho because Coach Oliver’s there,” she continued. The former Queen Lady Spiker, who had her jersey no. 14 retired by DLSU, is now working on bringing back her hops and hang time that wowed fans a decade ago when the sport’s following was limited only to Filipino volleyball purists.   “Ngayon lang ulit ako tumalon, nitong June. Nu’ng nag-start ako mag-training with Creamline noong February hanggang May more on floor defense lang ako, hindi pa ako kaagad tumatalon,” she said. “Again it’s been 10 years, it’s been a long time baka if nabigla ako ma-injury lang. So noong June pa lang ako nag-start, sakto noong nasa ChocoMucho ako.”         When asked if this generation will have a chance to see the vintage Illa Santos operate inside the court, Santos-Ng answered. “Let’s just say na my teammates nagsasabi na may talon pa rin naman,” she said.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 10th, 2019

MPBL: Undefeated Knights are a cut above the rest

Experience. Cohesiveness. These factors have led to the San Juan Knights-Go For Gold's stellar start in the MPBL Lakan Season as they remain undefeated after seven games.  Coming off a big five-game championshiop series win in the Datu Cup, the Knights' confidence is sky high, but they admit that this season has been tougher. “Mas focused kami now sa team defense.  Malalakas at mas magagaling ang mga teams at players now," shared veteran John Wilson. With 31 teams and longer gaps between games, it has been a little tougher to get one’s groove on a consistent basis. Because of their championship experience, they’ve been able to will through tough games.  According to MPBL anchor and journalist Cedelf Tupas, a big factor to the Knights' unblemished record is their finals stint. “Guys like Jhonard Clarito and Mike Ayonayon really made a leap as far as their development as players following the finals and they've carried that over this season. While other teams seem to fold in crunch time, the Knights look more and more comfortable. They embrace the challenge when games go down the wire,” observed Tupas. Credit the early achievement also so far to San Juan's leadership and team chemistry. “They've got a great mix of vets and young players in the squad who have embraced the system of coach Randy Alcantara, who despite his achievements remains one of the most underrated coaches in the country,” added Tupas. True enough, their experience in the clutch helped them escape with a one-point victory over the Bacoor Strikers to open the season, a two-point triumph over the Pasay Voyagers and an overtime win over the Bataan Risers.  Larry Rodriguez is still a force wherever he goes. Former NCAA MVP Wilson has always been consistent for the Knights, as he averages 16 points and six boards a game. Journeyman and Datu Cup Game 5 Finals hero Jhonard Clarito has been likewise a reliable scorer on offense, averaging 12 points in seven games.  As the team is continuing to getting better, the Knights have recruited young and experienced guard Andoy Estrella, who also played under Alcantara back in the NCAA. He is reunited with his Mapua teammate CJ Isit, who has been playing quality minutes this off-season. Estrella and Isit came out big against Pasay, with a combined 23 points and eight rebounds, while Rodriguez had a big double-double of 12 points and 16 boards against the Strikers. The next game of the San Juan Knights will be on August 5, against the dangerous Quezon City Capitals. The Capitals (4-3) are also a steady team, with four players averaging in double figures: Clark Derigue (13.3 ppg), Joco Tayontong (12.6 ppg), Tonino Gonzaga (11.6 ppg), Aaron Black (11.4 ppg) On the other hand, the Knights have also been consistent. Besides Wilson and Clarito averaging 16 and 12 a game, respectively and Mike Ayonayon putting up 12 markers an outing, Rodriguez and Mac Cardona both average close to 10 points per game. Wilson adds, they have no problem on offense as they let the game come to them. “Go with the flow lang with our offense. And sometimes, kung sino mainit, dun naming binabagsak ang bola.” If you are or have been in basketball for quite some time, all these quotes said by Wilson and Tupas are not new. But it’s easier said than done, it’s all about putting in to action what a team needs to do inside the court to get the job done. But more than finishing the work, it’s about cementing a reputation that experience pays off by focusing on the tiniest of details. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 3rd, 2019

PBA: Terrence Jones new tropa wants to send him back to the NBA

Over the last couple of seasons, the PBA has seen its share of super imports. Ginebra’s Justin Brownlee immediately comes to mind. Meralco’s Allen Durham and Phoenix’s Eugene Phelps fit in that mold too. Alaska’s Mike Harris is in that list as well. The uber-talented Glen Rice Jr. could have made it if he just got it together. But for the 2019 PBA Commissioner’s Cup, TNT brought not just any other import. Tired of underperforming for the past few conferences, the KaTropa went ahead and signed former Houston Rockets forward Terrence Jones for the mid-season joust. With Jones, TNT went the super — SUPER — import route and it has been worth every penny for the KaTropa, at least so far.   ROCKET MAN Many former NBA players have played in the PBA before, that’s not a new thing. But what makes Jones special is that he’s at his peak of his powers now as he plays his first stint in the PBA. Jones is a former first-round pick and was a legitimate NBA contributor. In his best NBA season, in 2013-2014 for Houston, Jones started 71 games and had career-high numbers of 12.1 points and 6.9 rebounds per game. This dude is legit. “Oo iba, iba siya talaga,” guard RR Pogoy said of Jones. (Yes, he’s really different). In just one conference, Pogoy and Jones have clicked as teammates. Terrence has admitted that RR is one of his favorite local targets when he’s trying to spot an open teammate when opposing teams double on him. Pogoy admits that Jones is one of the best, if not the best, import he’s ever played with. “Pwedeng-pwede pa siya talaga sa NBA eh. Iba yung skills niya,” he added. (He could still play in the NBA. His skills are just different).   THE DIFFERENCE TNT has ran pretty much the same system for years. Whether you like this team or now, they know what style they want to play andd they identify players that fit that system well. The KaTropa have dominated the PBA without a traditional big man. Ask other teams, they’ve been blindsided and bamboozled by a TNT offense led by diminutive point guards like Jimmy Alapag and Jayson Castro. However, the KaTropa have hit another rough patch. The team hasn’t made it to the PBA semifinals since 2017. Their 2018 campaign was a lot like the horror 2016 year with the only difference being three seasons ago, they actually made it to the semifinals of the Governors’ Cup as a no. 1 seed. Last year, they won zero playoff games and missed the playoffs altogether once so in essence, 2018 was a worse nightmare for the KaTropa. It didn’t help that in the previous All-Filipino, they were practically a missed 24-second violation away from ending the San Miguel Beer Philippine Cup dynasty. The winning formula no longer works for TNT. Or at the very least, it’s not as effective. Enter Terrence Jones. “Malaking tulong talaga siya sa team namin. Kung ano yung kulang samin, parang fit na fit talaga siya eh. Napa-dali na lang yung mga buhay namin sa basketball,” Pogoy said of Jones. (He’s a big help to our team. What we lack, he fits right in. Our basketball lives are easier with him). “Yung rebounding tsaka yung pagka-shot blocker niya [malaking tulong]. Naiilang din yun kalaban namin eh, sa rebound naman naco-control namin kasi may malaki na kami, yun naman talaga kulang namin,” Pogoy added. (His rebounding and his presence as a shot blocker is a huge help). In 10 games so far, Jones is averaging 14.9 rebounds per game. That may not seem much for an import but he’s never had fewer than 10 in a game and has hit a high 22 rebounds. His shot blocking has helped TNT shore up its overall defense as well with Jones averaging 2.9 rejections a game with his three best performances coming against Columbian (7 blocks), Ginebra (6 blocks), and San Miguel (5 blocks). The last two teams feature perhaps the two best frontlines in the league today by a wide margin. Aside from his defensive presences, Jones is a force on offense as well, averaging 34.5 points on close to 50 percent shooting. He’s hit over 30 points eight times and over 40 points four times. Scoring will be a given for a player of his caliber but what sets him apart is his ability to locate open teammates and willingly pass the ball to them. Jones is good for at least four assists in every game and he’s topped out at 16 dimes so far. In 10 games, he’s rounding up to 7.7 assists per outing which leads all imports, and the whole league actually. “Talagang willing passer siya, hinahanap din niya talaga yung mga kasama niya. Kumbaga di niya inaako lahat yung scoring load,” forward Troy Rosario said of his new frontcourt tandem in Jones. (He’s a willing passer. He really tries to find his teammates and he’s not trying to shoulder all the scoring load). “Kami ready pa rin kami lagi. Syempre yung experience niya sa NBA talagang pinapakita niya dito, natutulungan din niya kami kung saan kami dapat lumugar sa plays kasi advanced na siya eh, kahit di na sabihin ni coach alam na niya dapat gawin,” he added. (We’re just ready as locals. He’s really showing his NBA experience here, he’s helping us to where we need to be on plays because he’s so advanced he knows what to do even before coach tells us).   THE LEADER Aside from putting up big numbers across the board, there’s one underrated factor about Terrence Jones that has led to him making a positive impact on TNT. Jones made an effort to be a leader for the KaTropa and his teammates have rallied behind him for sure. The result is in the way they play and the way they win in the Commissioner’s Cup. “I think it’s come to them [TNT locals] listening and understanding that I have a little experience on what it takes to try to win and be a good teammate,” Jones said of his leadership role with the KaTropa and how it worked out. “They listened and understood that and we’ve been having fun ever since,” he added. TNT is full of alpha-level players but Jones’ NBA resume has certainly helped in making them line up behin their import and provide support. The the KaTropa have been running like a well-oiled machince with that set up. “Leadership pa lang niya ang laking tulong na samin. As locals, ginagawa lang namin kung ano dapat namin gawin para maka-contribute din and para matulungan din siya,” Rosario said. (His leadership alone is a big help for us. As locals, we just try to do what we need to do to contribute and to help him out). “Magaling siya, isa talaga siya mga leader namin ngayon. Talagang nili-lift up niya kami, di lang sa salita pati sa gawa,” Pogoy added. (He’s great, he’s one of our leaders now. He really lifts us up not just with words but with action as well)   THE LONG ROAD BACK TO THE ASSOCIATION It would be incredible if TNT ends up having Terrence Jones as a resident import the same way Ginebra has Justin Brownlee or Phoenix has Eugene Phelps or Meralco having Allen Durham. However, the KaTropa know that their super import still has a good shot of returning to the NBA and they plan on helping him get back there. “Syempre goal namin makapasok sa playoffs, nagawa na namin yun. Ang susunod na step is next round sa playoffs. Malaking tulong din yun sa kanya kasi yung pangalan niya bumabango ulit,” Rosario said. (Our goal is to make the playoffs and we did that. Now the next step is to get to the next round of the playoffs. That’s a big help for him to get his name out there again). “Preparation na rin kasi alam namin na after dito, meron siyang invites sa mga training camps,” he added. (It’s also good preparation because we know after this, he has some invites to camps). With TNT at 9-1 and a top-2 seed in the playoffs, the team is certainly favored to win in the Commissioner’s Cup. And perhaps one of Jones’ best ways to once again get some traction is to put up great numbers for a championship team in a big league like the PBA. There’s a big check mark on the numbers part and while he can’t win a title by his lonesome, Jones has an entire tropa that has his back. “Lalo na kung mag-champion kami, mabango yung pangalan niya di ba?” Pogoy said. (If we win the championship, that’s good for his name, right?). “Marami naman nags-scout diyan, nakikita siya and maganda pinapakita niya. Feel ko [kaya bumalik sa NBA],” he added. (There’s people that scout him, seeing him and how good he’s been performing. I feel [he can make it back to the NBA]). Of course, winning a PBA championship does not directly award Jones and NBA roster spot. However, he appreciates that his team backs him up in that regard. Right now TNT’s super import is just concerned about playing well with his team and winning more games. “I appreciate it, I wish nothing but the best for all my teammates as well,” Jones said. “I hope you guys see that while we’re playing, we’re smiling and enjoying one another when anybody scores. It’s just like a family atmosphere,” he added.   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 16th, 2019

Cargo Movers near first round sweep

SILAY CITY -- Unbeaten F2 Logistics moved closer to a first round sweep after making short work of Sta. Lucia, 25-15, 25-14, 25-21, Thursday in the second stop of the Philippine Superliga All-Filipino Conference Spike on Tour at the Natalio G. Velez Sports and Cultural Center here. Filipino-American Kalei Mau was at her best, piercing the Lady Realtors’ defense with timely hits to tow the Cargo Movers to their sixth straight win. Mau delivered 14 points off 10 kills and three aces while Ara Galang had 11 markers for the Cargo Movers, who displayed their championship form early on that left the Lady Realtors struggling to keep up. Skipper Aby Marano also had an impressive performance with 10 points laced with two blocks and an ace while Michelle Cobb delivered 20 excellent sets to compliment the 19 digs of Dawn Macandili. The Cargo Movers have a golden chance of sweeping the first round when they face rookie team Marinerang Pilipina next Thursday at the Muntinlupa Sports Center. “As I’ve said before, we’re not after the record in the elimination round because it will have no bearing in the playoffs,” said head coach Ramil De Jesus. “All we’re looking to get and develop here is our confidence heading into the quarterfinals where any team can be knocked out regardless of the record and the placing.” Meanwhile, Generika-Ayala escape disaster after carving out a thrilling, 25-23, 25-20, 20-25, 22-25, 15-12, victory over Cignal in the night cap. Patty Orendain fired 18 points built on 15 attacks, two aces and a kill block while adding 11 excellent receptions in the Lifesavers’ third win in five games. Angeli Araneta had 17 markers while Ria Meneses and Fiola Ceballos added 11 points each for Generika-Ayala. The HD Spikers suffered their straight defeat for a 2-3 mark. Rachel Anne Daquis was in her vintage form, scoring 20 points with 17 coming off spikes and added 17 digs and nine excellent receptions in a lost cause. Mylene Paat had 15 points while Ranya Musa finished with 10 for Cignal.   Despite the lackluster performance in the first set, the Lady Realtors actually gained steam in the second set, giving the Cargo Movers a scare with a 13-12 lead before being caught by a suffocating 12-1 closeout. Although Sta. Lucia also managed to go neck-and-neck in the third set as it inched closer to within a point, 20-21, F2 Logistics proved to be just too much to handle as Mau and Galang unleashed a strong finishing kick en route to the impressive win. No player scored in double figures for the Lady Realtors, who absorbed their fifth straight setback to slide to 1-5 slate. Rachel Austero and MJ Philips paced the attack with five markers apiece......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 4th, 2019