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Dawn Macandili: It All Started With a Flying Shoe

Libero Dawn Macandili had to start somewhere before becoming Miss Everywhere. Her first venture into volleyball – the start of her successful journey – is as memorable as the pair of shoes she was wearing that day. Coming from a sports-loving family, it’s all but natural for the former De La Salle University star to be into sports. Her father played hoops for Jose Rizal University for a while but had to give it up as he was already juggling his studies and work. Macandili's paternal grandmother was a slugger on a softball team and her brother played basketball before shifting to tennis. Her eldest sister played volleyball and then became a team captain of a cheering squad in college while her other sister fell in love with tennis.   She ended up choosing volleyball as her sport.      “I started playing (volleyball) in the middle of fifth grade,” said Macandili, who recalled that she was around 11-years-old then when she joined the De La Salle University-Lipa team. The national team standout shared a humorous anecdote about her official volleyball game debut. Back then she was a spiker. “My first-ever official volleyball game was back when I was in Grade 5 and I was playing in Skechers with Velcro straps,” she said.   “In the middle of the game while I was running for the ball, one of my shoes came off,” Macandili continued. “That was the most memorable first game ever.” From there Macandili never looked back. Transferring to De La Salle-Zobel, Macandili was given a new role under Ramil De Jesus, who was also the coach La Salle's high school team.    “At first, I was a spiker for DLS-L’s grade school team because my teammates were almost the same height as me. When I moved up to the high school team I played libero as my height wouldn't suffice (as a spiker) anymore,” she said. “Our coach in the high school team was coach Ramil de Jesus. I, being a Lasallian at heart, could not imagine studying anywhere else but in DLSU,” Macandili added. “Another big factor was that coach Ramil is a great mentor and has produced elite players. I thought that if I was going to play in college. I was gonna play for him.” She won three high school UAAP titles from Season 73 to 75. Macandili was also a member of the team that won gold in the 2010 and 2012 Guam Youth Games and helped NCR win the Palarong Pambansa 2013 gold medal where she was also named Best Libero. Naturally, she moved up to play for the Lady Spikers in college. Her first two years weren’t as successful as she wished it to be after DLSU lost to Ateneo in the UAAP Finals in Season 76 and 77. The Lady Spikers got their payback in Season 78 and won two more titles as Macandili closed her collegiate career a champion. In that three-year reign, Macandili bagged two Best Receiver awards, Best Digger honors and the Season 80 Finals Most Valuable Player award.   She brought her success to the Philippine Superliga, winning numerous titles and individual accolades, including the 2016 All Filipino Conference MVP. Macandili joined the national team in 2017 and saw action in the 2017 Kuala Lumpur Southeast Asian Games, 2018 Asian Games in Indonesia and in the Manila SEA Games last December 2019.  Macandili was also recognized as 2nd Best Libero in the 2017 AVC Asian Senior Women’s Volleyball Championship held in Binan, Laguna. Looking back, Macandili can’t help but be grateful on that first volleyball game of hers. After all, the shoe that flew off somewhere brought her to where she is now.     That gem of a memorable moment never fails to put a smile on her face.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource: abscbn abscbnJun 8th, 2020

WHAT IF... Dawn Macandili landed in Ateneo?

Dawn Macandili is a La Sallian through and through. From prep to college, the former Lady Spikers libero was under the De La Salle University education system. Macandili’s volleyball career started during her grade school days in DLSU-Lipa that eventually landed her a ticket to DLSU-Zobel. There she won three UAAP titles and eventually won three more with the Lady Spikers  in college. The diminutive defense specialist wore the green and white with great pride. With that said, it’s hard to imagine Macandili wearing any other color. But then what if she did? Besides, Macandili admited that she did try to get into other schools for college in case her DLSU entrance exam didn't go out well. “Nag-try din ako mag-entrance exam sa ibang school kasi siyempre baka naman ang kapal ng mukha ko ‘De La Salle ako tapos bumagsak pala ako,’” said Macandili laughing during her appearance on Volleyball DNA hosted by Anton Roxas and Denden Lazaro. She mentioned two schools, Ateneo de Manila University and College of St. Benilde. So what if Macandili chose to don the blue and white instead of sister-schools DLSU and CSB’s colors? Now that’s interesting. Imagine the UAAP Season 78 and 79 Best Receiver and Season 78 Best Digger Macandili playing alongside Lazaro for the Lady Eagles. For sure, it will be a nightmare for the opposing teams considering the caliber of these liberos. Of course, Macandili would definitely take the backseat in her first two years in Seasons 76 and 77 as it would still be Lazaro’s and all-around hitter Ella De Jesus’ show. But with Lazaro and De Jesus exhausting all their playing eligibility after Season 77, the national team standout would’ve been Ateneo’s game-changer in Season 78. Macandili would’ve saved the Lady Eagles from their Achilles’ Heel: floor defense. Ateneo was sixth in digs and third in reception that season. She would’ve lightened up the defensive load on Ateneo hitters Alyssa Valdez and Jho Maraguinot. Her presence would also give the Lady Eagles a last line of defense in case opposing hitters got past middles Bea De Leon and Amy Ahomiro. And of course, it would’ve been quite a sight to watch the connection of Macandili with setter Jia Morado in Ateneo’s transition from defense to offense.         With these pieces set, the Lady Eagles’ reign might even be extended to a three-peat. Macandili’s last two seasons in Ateneo would surely be a challenging one after the departure of Valdez after Season 78 and Morado foregoing her final year in Season 80. But then again with a veteran in Macandili at the helm, Ateneo’s chances of winning another crown would’ve been higher.   ---     Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 26th, 2020

Cargo Movers haul 10th straight win

F2 Logistics flirted with disaster before escaping with a thrilling 25-19, 25-27, 25-22, 18-25, 15-13 win over Generika-Ayala to preserve its unbeaten record in the 2019 Philippine Superliga All-Filipino Conference Saturday at the FilOil Flying V Centre.  The Cargo Movers nearly collapsed in the deciding set as they committed five of their 32 errors but recovered just in time to escape with their 10th straight win. F2 Logistics trailed, 7-10, in the fifth set before Desiree Cheng, Ara Galang and Kianna Dy stopped the bleeding and knotted the frame at 11.  Skipper Angeli Araneta tried to keep the Lifesavers afloat with an attack, but she crashed with a knee injury, allowing the Cargo Movers to deliver the knockout blows and wrap up the battle after two hours and 42 minutes. Kalei Mau had 25 points but struggled at the attack zone, hitting only 24 of 77 attempts and protected the floor with 23 digs and 16 excellent receptions while Ara Galang put up 16 points. Majoy Baron hosted a block party providing nine of her team’s 17 blocks for 14 points. Cheng added 10 markers while Dawn Macandili was everywhere with 43 digs and 12 excellent receptions. Fiola Ceballos led Generika-Ayala with 22 points including 27 digs. Patty Orendain had 16 points including 11 excellent receptions, while Araneta and Ria Meneses added 11 markers apiece. The Lifesavers dropped to 6-5 win-loss record at fourth place. Meanwhile, Cignal turned back a feisty Marinerang Pilipina side, 25-20, 25-15, 24-26, 27-25, for a 5-5 slate at fifth spot. Rachel Anne Daquis led the way for the HD Spikers with 18 points off 14 hits, three kills blocks and an ace while Mylene Paat finished with 14 markers. Six-foot-2 setter Alohi Robins-Hardy tallied 19 excellent sets and scored 13 points for Cignal. The Lady Skippers avoided a shut out as Cignal squandered its match point advantage, 24-22. But Marinerang Pilipina paid dearly in their gallant stand as outside hitter Chiara Permentilla was stretchered off the court  after hurting her left knee following an awkward landing after a spike attempt that was turned back by Robins-Hardy’s solid block with the set at tied 19-all. The Lady Skippers forced two deuces in the fourth before the the HD Spikers pulled off their escape following an error by Marinerang Pilipina sealed by a Roselyn Doria block on Caitlyn Viray. Zilfa Olarve scored 13 points off the bench, veteran Ivy Remulla had 12 points while Permentilla chipped in 11 points in the Lady Skippers' 10th defeat in as many games......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 27th, 2019

Blaze Spikers escape HD Spikers in five

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

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 18th, 2019

To get me prepared for the SEA Games -- Mau on her transfer

Filipino-American power-hitter Kalei Mau found a new home in F2 Logistics. The 6-foot-2 open spiker chose to join the Cargo Movers not only to help F2 Logistics reclaim the 2019 Philippine Superliga All-Filipino Conference crown but also to improve her game in time for the 30th Southeast Asian Games under the system of Ramil de Jesus.      “The reason why I chose F2 was mainly I thought about what team will benefit me as a player,” said Mau on Thursday in Day 2 of the national women’s volleyball team practice at the Arellano University Gym in Taft.   Mau transferred to the Cargo Movers after her former team United VC disbanded just days before the 2019 PSL AFC. F2 Logistics last won the AFC title back in 2016.  [Related story: Cargo Movers sign Kalei Mau] The hitter said that playing under De Jesus will benefit her for her first-ever stint for the tri-colors. “For a long time in UVC we didn’t really have a system that I was used to in playing overseas and playing back home in the States,” she said. “What I wanted to do is to try and find something close to my training level back in the States back to when I was playing in college just to really get me prepared for the SEA Games.” Playing for the F2 Logistics, Mau will be playing alongside national team teammates Aby Marano, libero Dawn Macandili and middle blocker Majoy Baron.   “I asked a lot of people what’s the best environment to put myself in if that’s my end goal. So I chose F2 not only because they have a good coach but also they have most of my teammates here in the national team,” said Mau. “The girls in the gym, they’re really holding me accountable.” The Hawaiian started to train with the Cargo Movers Thursday morning.     “The only thing that I would say is I would really want to spend a little more time connecting with my setters there, just because I know that a lot of Filipina setters they’re smaller,” said Mau. “A lot of the hitters here are also smaller. It might be a little hard to try to adjust but it’s not impossible.” Mau will need to adjust and make a connection with F2 Logistics setters Kim Fajardo, a former member of the national squad,  and Alex Cabanos. “What I like is high and faster sets to the pin. Something that a connection that me and Alohi (Robins-Hardy) like it was natural to,” said Mau. “But definitely, I’m excited to play with the setters that we have in our gym and see where it’s gonna take us.”   ---     Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 13th, 2019

Dawn fire guts 15 homes in Calamba, Cebu City

Cebu City, Philippines—An estimated 15 houses were destroyed in a fire that hit an area along A. Lopez street in Sitio Mahayahay, Barangay Calamba, Cebu City on Friday dawn, April 9, 2021.  According to FO3 Emerson Arceo of the Cebu City Fire Office, the fire allegedly started from the house owned by Angel Benuya. The fire […] The post Dawn fire guts 15 homes in Calamba, Cebu City appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsApr 9th, 2021

Literary Fiesta

Filipino dining in Philippine literature Pahiyas festival, illustration by Manuel Baldemor It’s not Pinoy dining if it’s not a feast. And our Philippine literature has told many stories that illustrate our healthy appetite, traditional palayok (clay pot) cooking, siesta, fiesta, flavors, and fusions.  Doña Victorina fans herself amid the smoke of a roasting pig. Her guests are coming, their noses up in the air sniffing the flavors. On the table, adorned with gilded copa de vino (wine glass) and plato, are sinigang na dalag with alibambang leaves, callos, adobo, tinola, and pochero. Everybody was in high spirits. Never mind if the doña is broke (to begin with). At least her guests are full. Jose Rizal drew a perfect picture of the Pinoy fiesta and salu-salo (gathering) culture. Our national hero himself loves to eat. He prefers a hefty serving of champorado and tuyo for breakfast. For dessert, he likes minatamis na santol (sweetened santol) made from boiled santol slices soaked for three days in hugas bigas (water used to wash rice). Before starving in Europe, where he published El Filibusterismo, Rizal would feast in carneng asada (beefsteak with sauce), made from lean meat marinated in olive oil, lime juice, and parsley and served with fried potatoes. Gabriela Silang loved pinakbet. Emilio Aguinaldo listed sardines with tomatoes among his favorites. Marcelo H. del Pilar would die (pun intended) for his apparent favorite, pochero, the local version of the Spanish cocido. Andres Bonifacio got his strength and protein source in nilitsong manok sa zaha (grilled chicken wrapped in sampaloc and banana leaves). The Filipino salu-salo Never mind if some of our celebrated dishes are not “purely” Pinoy. “What is Filipino food and how does food become Filipino?” asks the late food critic Doreen Fernandez. She argued that food only became Pinoy by process of indigenization, like patis (fish sauce) put in a foreign dish. And this is how Pinoy fusion came to life. What we have on our modern plates are many fusions, crazy or ingenious, like paella with lechon, sinigang na steak, adobong tapa, pancit with kangkong. Yes, you get the picture.  Could their favorite Filipino flavors be the reason behind the intelligence and nationalism of our heroes Rizal and Bonifacio? Too bad, many young Pinoys nowadays barely know what minatamis na santol is, or any Pinoy traditional merienda for that matter. What replaced maruya, nilagang kamote, turon, kutsinta, and ginataang mais are French fries, burger, pizza, and pasta. You know what they say: You are what you eat.   In another table setting, Padre Damaso looks across the dining table. Everybody’s enjoying tinola, a stew of chicken and green papaya, but not him. Who wants chicken neck for lunch? He didn’t finish his plate. And this, people, was how the concepts of degustation and small plates were born. They’re not, after all, a French discovery or New York’s. We can blame our mañaña habit. We’re too slow to grab the credit. And oh, we are pioneers of the culture of not finishing plates, too. Blame these all to Padre Damaso (or Jose Rizal?). The tinola brouhaha scene in Noli Me Tangere started it all.  Lechon haus mural by boonsai While it’s rude in other cultures not to devour all the food served on the plate, in the Philippines, it’s not. Pinoy eating tradition tells you it’s okay to have leftovers. Telenovela , movies, and literature are great examples. When a family fights over the dining table, the father (or any member) walks away with an unfinished plate. In Ibong Adarna, over a scrumptious dinner, the brothers were all too busy planning how to catch the elusive bird that they forgot to finish their plate.       Besides books, paintings also tell our delicious food experience. Fernando Amorsolo captured Pinoy eating habits in his painting Afternoon Meal of the Rice Workers. It shows Pinoy families cooking meals in a palayok and eating under the shade of a tree, seemingly ready to sleep after an afternoon feast. With all the food trends coming and going on our plates and literature pages flying off to oblivion, what remains steadfast in our eating habit is this: Siesta. –NICKKY FAUSTINE P. DE GUZMAN.....»»

Category: newsSource:  mb.com.phRelated NewsOct 18th, 2020

Eduard Folayang: When an underdog finally became a world champion

In the five years that I was with the ABS-CBN Sports website, I was fortunate enough to have covered quite a number of memorable sports moments, so when I was asked to write about which was the most memorable for me, it was tough to narrow it down to just one single coverage. I could have written about Letran’s momentous upset of a dynasty-seeking San Beda in the NCAA Season 91 Finals, or I could have written about the Philippine Azkals making history by clinching a spot in the 2019 AFC Asian Cup.  Being an MMA fan, I could have written about getting to be Octagon-side for the UFC’s first and only trip to Manila, which was indeed a dream come true for me.  When I think about it however, the coverage that sticks with me to this day, even four years later, was being cage-side, just inches away from Eduard  “Landslide” Folayang as he pummeled Shinya Aoki to become the ONE Lightweight World Champion in Singapore back in 2016.  I tell people about that night all the time, and I believe I’ll continue to do so for the rest of my life.  A Fan First As I mentioned earlier, I’m an MMA fan. In fact, being a fan was actually how I eventually got into sports writing.  During my first year or so with ABS-CBN, I got wind of a show on Balls Channel entitled “The Takedown” which was, you guessed it, about the UFC. Immediately, I knew that I wanted to be a part of that show, in any capacity. I even offered to research or write for free, LOL.  While I never did get to work on the show (because unfortunately, it lasted only a few episodes), I did get to make some connections (shoutout to Sir Lori, Ms. Jo, and Ms. Anna!) which eventually landed me a gig as a UFC writer for the Balls Channel Website. During that time, I got to meet and interview stars like BJ Penn, Alexander Gustafsson, Urijah Faber, Cung Le, and even Arianny Celeste. For an MMA fan like me, it was like working a dream job. It was a pretty sweet gig.  Eventually, that job with the Balls Channel Website would lead me to a spot on the ABS-CBN Sports Website which was launched in 2015. By 2016, I had started covering Asia-based MMA promotion ONE Championship quite a bit because ABS-CBN had signed a broadcast deal with them, and because ONE had a ton of homegrown Pinoy fighters on their roster, most notably Folayang and the Team Lakay guys.  Folayang, whose contract with ONE expired in March of 2016, re-signed with the promotion and returned to action in August, defeating Adrian Pang by Unanimous Decision in Macau. That win over Pang earned Folayang the biggest bout of his career at that point: a title shot against reigning champion Aoki.  When I learned of that title fight, I was very excited for Folayang, but had little expectations for his chances, being that Aoki was a legend in the sport.  Best Seat in the House Eduard Folayang finally getting to fight for a world championship was a huge deal for Filipino MMA fans, especially those that had followed the Baguio-based star’s career since his days in the URCC. The Pinoy star was on ONE’s first ever event, but could never seem to gain enough momentum to compete for a world title, until that point.  That November night in Singapore, all the years of work sacrifice that Folayang had put in during his nine-year MMA career would finally pay off.  This was only my second time to cover a ONE event overseas, so apart from having to write stories, I also had to take pictures. Learning from my past mistakes, I asked if I could have a spot cage-side so that I could take some at least decent photos. Thankfully, the ONE people agreed and gave me a spot just beside one of the judges’ tables.  I had the best seat in the house.  Now, as I said, I had tapered my expectations for the fight. I had seen what Aoki could do in the cage. I’ve seen the guy break peoples’ bones before, so honestly, I was just hoping that he wouldn’t injure Folayang. Our guy was the underdog heading into this fight, no doubt about it.  Of course, as a Filipino and as a fan I was hoping for a massive upset. The beautiful thing about MMA is anything can happen.  Shock The World This was legitimately the first time that I felt nervous covering a fight. It’s like that feeling you have when your favorite basketball team is in a close game with just seconds left.  That first round was a frigging whirlwind of emotions if you’re a Pinoy MMA fan. It looked like Aoki was within moments of being able to submit Folayang on multiple occasions.  The second round was a little bit more relaxed for Folayang, especially since he had been able to survive Aoki’s opening round grappling blitz. It looked like he was a bit more confident and he started to throw some of his trademark spinning kicks and elbows.  A miscalculated flying knee attempt led to another Aoki takedown, but this time around, Folayang appeared a little more calm and relaxed under the pressure.  Late in the round, Folayang began to attack Aoki’s torso with punches and kicks, and it looked like it had the Japanese legend a bit winded. The tide had shifted.  Heading into the third round, there was a different feeling in the air. It felt like Aoki was done, and it felt like Folayang knew it.  In the opening seconds of that fateful third frame, Folayang knew exactly what Aoki was going to do and had an answer for it. Aoki shot in for a takedown, and Folayang countered it with a jumping knee to the jaw.  For a brief second, Folayang was on his behind, but managed to outmuscle Aoki and deliver another vicious knee.  “Oh sh*t!” I yelled internally while scrambling to take photos of the ensuing beatdown.  Folayang turned Aoki over and began to connect with punch after unanswered punch.  Without taking my eye away from my camera’s viewfinder, I started yelling for Folayang to finish it.  Folayang continued to punish Aoki with piston-like punches as the Singapore Indoor Stadium began to erupt.  For what felt like an eternity, referee Yuji Shimada watched as Folayang unloaded nine years worth of heartbreak and frustration into a ground-and-pound sequence.  And then, it was over.  There was a new lightweight king.  AND NEW! EDUARD FOLAYANG STOPS SHINYA AOKI IN ROUND 3! — Santino Honasan???? (@honasantino) November 11, 2016     The Landslide Reigns As much as I would have wanted to keep it cool, I started to freak out. I looked to my right and saw my fellow Pinoy journalists doing the same, one was even standing on the table, cheering the new world champion on.  At that point, I had watched UAAP championships, NCAA championships, even some boxing world championships, but this one was different. I knew what Folayang had gone through. I knew that the odds were stacked against him.  As the confetti began to rain down and the celebration inside the ring continued, I recomposed myself and started to take pictures again. I wanted to be able to capture this moment.  After the official decision and the post-fight interview, I remember calling out to Folayang so that I could take a photo of him with his shiny new toy.  I’ve gotten to witness other members of Team Lakay become champions since then. I’ve been blessed enough to see Geje Eustaquio, Kevin Belingon and Joshua Pacio all become titleholders within a single year. While getting to see Team Lakay draped in gold to end 2018 was definitely a sight to behold, being there cage side as ‘Manong Ed’ realized a life-long dream was definitely an experience that I won’t soon forget.  Folayang's title win wasn't Team Lakay's first world champmionship, and it isn't the last. For me however, I think it's the most important, because it showed that no matter how many times you fall, you can still find your way to the top.  Everyone loves a good underdog story.  -- Santino Honasan has served as a sub-section editor for ABS-CBN Sports' website since 2015. He is among thousands of ABS-CBN employees who will be retrenched on August 31, 2020. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 29th, 2020

UAAP 81: When the sleeping giant named UP finally awakened

No cheering - that's the cardinal rule for sportswriters during coverages. In collegiate sports, not even your very own alma mater song is spared. Still, on November 28, 2018, I thought this one time could be an exception to the rule. After all, more than half of the Araneta Coliseum had their hands raised in singing "UP Naming Mahal." Certainly, not one more fist in the air could be considered conspicuous. After all, the University of the Philippines Men's Basketball Team was letting it all out right there on the court. Certainly, not one more show of emotion could be out of place. And after all, the Fighting Maroons had just done it. It, being seeing a new dawn after the so-called dark days. FROM FIGHTING TO WINNING UAAP 81 started very much like how many, many UP seasons did in recent memory. There was a lot of hope, no doubt, what with Paul Desiderio in his last year, Bright Akhuetie in his first year, Gomez de Liano brothers Juan and Javi being back for more, and Bo Perasol still at the helm. Only, being a fan of the Fighting Maroons also meant you know full well all of it couldn't be true. History is a lesson to be learned - and from the promise of Migs De Asis, Mike Gamboa, Martin Reyes, and great Filipino-American hope Mike Silungan and the potential of Mikee Reyes, Woody Co, and Kyles Lao, Diliman has learned many, many lessons, indeed. And then, the season started. A season-opening win became a 1-3 standing. A 3-3 record worsened to 3-5. Standing at an even 5-5 in the stretch run then led to winning three of the last four games in the elimination round. And before you knew it, UP, yes, UP was knocking on the door of the Final Four. Could this be it? Or could this be just the biggest disappointment the Fighting Maroons had ever served? FROM WINNING TO LOSING A winning tradition could be taken for granted. Coming from a school down south that was, is, and forever linked to a particular powerhouse, I, personally, was very much used to winning. Even more, I was right there when Joshua (or Dave, as we called him) Webb, Jeric Fortuna, and Jed Manguera led the team formerly known as the Bengals to a breakthrough championship. So, yeah, personally, my tradition was to root for a winning team - be it in the Jrs. or in the Srs. Come college, though, I traded in the shield of green and white for the luntian at pulang sagisag magpakailanman. And hey, UP Diliman is and always will be the best school in the history of man, in my eyes. In terms of basketball, though, it left much to be desired. As I was about to go to college, the Fighting Maroons went winless in back-to-back years. And then, they had three-win seasons when I was a freshie and a sophomore. In all my four years in college, I only experienced eight wins out of 56. So yeah, in State U, there was the exact opposite of a winning tradition. (EDITOR'S NOTE: Don't get me wrong here. UP is a power in many, many sports and is a contender for the general championship year in and year out. Back then, though, forgive me if I only had eyes for men's basketball.) FROM JETT TO PAUL And then, a ray of light shone bright, and brighter, and brighter. I have now grown to love Mikee Reyes - he is a great guy and a good analyst. Back then, though, he was a prime proof of what wasn't working in UP. Here was a talent who had a shot at making a name for himself and taking his team along with him for the ride, but unfortunately, just could not put it all together. Reyes was just one of many, many promising players in maroon and green who didn't have the sort of support that a winning tradition entailed. True to their name, though, the Fighting Maroons kept, well, fighting. And in his last year, Jett Manuel proved that the tides could turn in their favor. Manuel would never be the best player on De La Salle University or Ateneo de Manila University or even University of Sto. Tomas and Far Eastern University. Still, he gave his all game in and game out and grew to be a beloved player and leader in Diliman. He set the standard for the kind of fight a Maroon should have and in his last year, steered his squad to a fifth-place finish at 5-9. Not a finish to be proud of by any means, but for the first time in a long time, there were signs of life coming from State U. And that's when I knew Jett Manuel would be my forever King Maroon. However, just two years later, Paul Desiderio made me question that. FROM THEN TO NOW Definitely, Paul Desiderio is not Jett Manuel. Jett is eloquent and looks like he came from an exclusive private school, which he did. Paul speaks in short but sweet terms and is very much proud of his roots in Cebu. What they both have, though, is an undeniable love for UP and an unwavering determination to lead the Fighting Maroons to where they belong. When Manuel left, of course, the reins went to Desiderio and in his very first game as main man, he proved his worth. I know you know what I'm going to talk about - because this was the time he uttered the words that would define State U from that point onto the foreseeable future. "Atin to, papasok to!" -- Paul Desiderio during the timeout. Moments later...#UAAPSeason80 pic.twitter.com/7yafSpldJM — ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) September 10, 2017 The maroon and green yet again fell short of the Final Four that year, but come next season, a playoff berth was, indeed, theirs for the taking. Downing La Salle in the very last game of the elims, they booked a trip to the next round for the first time since 1997. That would have been more than enough for their long-suffering faithful, but they did themselves one better - actually, two better - and upset second-seed and twice-to-beat Adamson University. Just like that, UP would be playing in its first Finals since the days of Benjie Paras, Ronnie Magsanoc, Eric Altamirano, and Joe Lipa. That day, November 28, 2018, would always live on with me. FROM ME TO YOU As bad as I wanted to break the cardinal rule for sportswriters, I didn't. As bad as I wanted to stay on the floor to listen and live in the chorus singing in harmony, "Mabuhay ang pag-asa ng bayan," I couldn't. When UP made history, I had to go back to the press room and finish my full take on the game. Just minutes before, I honestly couldn't believe the breaking report I was working on in my phone and uploading in our website. Really? The Fighting Maroons had done it. Even with the final stat sheet in my hands, I still couldn't believe it. Really? The Fighting Maroons had done it. Even through writing "those back-to-back wins have set up for them a date with defending champion Ateneo de Manila University in the best-of-three Finals slated for Saturday at the MOA Arena," I still couldn't believe it. Really? The Fighting Maroons had done it. Of course, in the very end, Ateneo was Ateneo and State U had to settle for second-place. Still, there may not be another silver medal that was worth celebrating more. You have to understand that again, this is a team not that far off from its dark days - so, yeah, this silver season was a special season. And so, at the very end of Season 81, when I saw Paul standing on the game officials' table, basking in the UP community's cries of "De-si-de-rio" and "A-tin-to," another chant was playing in my head - "You deserve it." This image, would always live on with me. At the same time, though, I was a firsthand witness to another image that told me this was just the beginning. First Finals appearance, first Finals loss. Fo sho, GDL brothers @javigdl22 and @juan_swish9 will only be better from this. #UAAPSeason81 pic.twitter.com/CMV0JH30rh — No Work Normie Riego (@riegogogo) December 5, 2018 Juan and Javi GDL sat on the makeshift awarding stage while the Blue Eagles were enjoying their back-to-back championships and Desiderio was being serenaded by the Fighting Maroons' faithful. Their eyes were welling up with tears, but deep down there, you could also see their determination to be back, to be better, and to say themselves "Atin 'to" to a championship. FROM HERE ON OUT UAAP 81 was Ateneo's, no doubt about that. UAAP 82, when UP was supposedly stronger, was still Ateneo's, yet again no doubt about that. Actually, the Fighting Maroons were even owned by runner-up UST that year - and those Growling Tigers had a Cinderella tale to tell of their own. And yet, for my money, no team in recent memory has won over everybody quite like Paul Desiderio's UP Fighting Maroons. Maybe, just maybe, that's all because I'm an Isko with student no. 2008-6*1*5. Or maybe, just maybe, it's so good to see a sleeping giant awakened - now knowledgeable of how to build a team and now knowledgeable how to put up support for that team. Or maybe, just maybe, it's so good to see homegrown stars like Diego Dario and the GDLs stay home and play home and to see a foreign student-athlete like Akhuetie shine bright both as a student and as an athlete. Or maybe, just maybe, it's so good to put your full faith in somebody like Desiderio who truly, madly, and deeply believed "Atin 'to" - even though recent history said otherwise. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo. Norman Lee Benjamin Riego has served as a sub-section editor for ABS-CBN Sports' website since 2014. He is among thousands of ABS-CBN employees who will be retrenched on August 31, 2020. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 28th, 2020

Si Coach Boc ang game-changer ko -- Dawn Macandili

If there is one person that multi-awarded libero Dawn Macandili would give credit to for all that she has achieved in her career aside from college coach Ramil de Jesus it would be assistant coach Benson Bocboc. The quiet and soft-spoken De La Salle University deputy has been De Jesus’ numbers guy on the Lady Spikers bench, his reliable scout and a trusted strategist. [Related story:  DLSU's weapon against Ateneo: Clipboard and tablet] But for Macandili he is more than just DLSU’s man who crunches numbers or the one who prepares scouting reports.   “Si Coach Boc ang game-changer ko,” Macandili said in her appearance on Volleyball DNA hosted by Anton Roxas and Denden Lazaro. Macandili said that when Bocboc went on board as the Lady Spikers prepared for Season 78 – the start of DLSU’s third three-peat – he immediately went down to work to help strengthen DLSU’s floor defense particularly focusing on liberos Macandili and CJ Saga.     “Nu’ng dumating si Coach Boc, sobrang na-focus niya ang mga libero kasi ang style niya is Japanese training,” Macandili shared. “In-introduce niya kami sa mga drills na pang-Japanese. Sobrang na-amaze ako, ‘Wow Japanese style na defense.’” Macandili added that it was the first time since she joined the Lady Spikers that a practice session solely dedicated for liberos was added into their training schedule.    “Ang daming drills na pinapagawa sa amin. Natutuwa ako kasi I’m always looking forward to learning something new,” she said. Bocboc according to Macandili was very technical, correcting them down to the smallest details. “Lagi niya kaming ini-introduce sa techniques. Gusto ko siyang ma-master. So every training may pinapagawa siya sa amin. Iba rin kasi talaga siyang mag-correct, to the slightest detail,” said the Tanauan, Batangas pride. “Dun ko na-realize na volleyball is very technical. Di lang basta na marunong kang mag-receive, marunong kang mag-dig pass. Hindi, kung marunong kang mag-receive kailangan ganito ang form mo, kailangan ganito kababa, mga ganoon.” He came into the team at the most critical time as DLSU was then shifting to a new approach to its system following two straight heartbreaking championship losses to the powerhouse Alyssa Valdez-led archrival Ateneo de Manila University Lady Eagles. “[Up to the] smallest details ang itinuturo niya sa amin and makikita mo talaga ang effect niya sa training and sa game,” said Macandili. Under Bocboc’s guidance, Macandili had her breakout season in 2016 as she played a key role in the Lady Spikers’ ascent back to the UAAP throne. Macandili in Season 78 was named Best Receiver, which she would win again the following year, and Best Digger while helping DLSU begin another three-year reign. Macandili would continue to rack in individual accolades, winning the Most Valuable Player award in the Philippine Superliga in 2016, being named the 2nd Best Libero in the 2017 AVC Asian Women’s Senior Championship as a member of the national team before wrapping up her UAAP career by bagging the Finals MVP in Season 80 - the first defense specialist to receive the honor. All thanks to the DLSU assistant coach. “Nag-iba talaga ang mindset ko nun sa volleyball na parang ang lawak niya na ang dami ko pang di alam. Doon ako na-engganyo na I want to learn more, more, more. I want to learn more talaga,” she said.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 24th, 2020

ON THIS DAY: Dawn Macandili was named Asia’s 2nd Best Libero

Dawn Macandili has reached great heights in her storied volleyball career. Three UAAP titles with De La Salle University, success in the commercial league including a Most Valuable Player award, numerous individual honors and a regular stint in the national team since 2017 are some of the highlights on her stacked resume. However, Macandili’s greatest personal achievement is when the Tanauan, Batangas native stood tall alongside Asia’s biggest name in women’s volleyball. Three years ago on this day, the diminutive defense specialist of the national team earned the honor of being one of the continent’s finest during the 2017 AVC Asian Senior Women's Volleyball Championship. Although the Filipinas ended up in eighth place in the 14-country field, Macandili gave the local crowd a sense of pride when she stepped on the podium to receive her 2nd Best Libero award. A reward worth all the dives, tumbles and running all over the court to chase the ball to keep the play alive. “Bawing-bawi,” the 24-year old libero said then. What made that night extra special for Macandili was it was also on that same day the year before when she became the first libero in a local commercial league to win an MVP award. In 2016, Macandili spearheaded F2 Logistics to the Philippine Superliga All-Filipino Conference throne and on her way to bagging the highest individual award. During the competition, Macandili was the catalyst of the Nationals’ transition from defense to offense. Her court smarts, timing and athleticism in manning the floor proved to be a valuable asset for the then Francis Vicente-mentored squad. She made her biggest impact when the Filipinas defeated Southeast Asian powerhouse Vietnam. Macandili tallied 19 digs and 12 excellent receptions in a 27-25, 26-24, 17-25, 25-23, win over the Vietnamese in the quarterfinals classification round. Her impact during the course of the competition didn’t go unnoticed. The crowd inside the Alonte Sports Arena in Binan, Laguna exploded in jubilation when Macandili’s name was called during the awarding of individual honors. Macandili during that memorable night stood alongside Asian stars Risa Shinnabe of  tournament champion Japan, who was named MVP, Korean star hitter Kim Yeon-Koung and Chatchu-on Moksri of Thailand, legendary Thai setter Nootsara Tomkom, middles Hattaya Bamrungsuk of Thailand and Japanese Nana Iwasaka and Chinese opposite hitter Jin Ye. Japanese Mako Kobata was the 1st Best Libero winner. “I think it shows that we Filipinos can achieve greater heights if we put our mind to it,” Macandili told ABS-CBN Sports in a separate interview.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 17th, 2020

DLSU s volleyball program continuously evolves under De Jesus

From Iris Ortega-Patrona to legendary star Manilla Santos-Ng to Aby Marano, Ara Galang, Mika Reyes, Michele Gumabao, Majoy Baron and Kim Dy to the current crop of players in Jolina Dela Cruz to Thea Gagate, much can be said about the successful women’s volleyball program of De La Salle University. But it won’t be complete without mentioning the name of head coach Ramil de Jesus, who turned a struggling team into a perennial title contender for the past two decades. Eleven championships in 18 Finals appearances since taking the post as mentor of the Lady Spikers in 1997 with an impressive winning record, De Jesus truly is the genius behind DLSU’s powerhouse status. But what really put De Jesus a cut above the rest, Santos-Ng said, is his ability to adapt, utilize the pieces he has on hand and the way his system evolves. “The evolution of DLSU volleyball lies not only from the great players, but mainly because of the way Coach Ramil adjusts and adapts on the current situation,” said Santos-Ng in an interview on Volleyball DNA. She mentioned that during her time, De Jesus focused on making DLSU a powerhitting team. When the likes of Marano and Gumabao came, the mentor concentrated on making the Lady Spikers the strongest team in terms of blocking. The batch of Dy, Kim Fajardo, Baron and libero Dawn Macandili was known for its all-around play. What brought DLSU its success is the fact that De Jesus was quick to adapt to situations.    Of course, glory didn’t come overnight. It took De Jesus a lot of work to bring the Lady Spikers on top. De Jesus delivered DLSU’s first title in Season 62 in the Lady Spikers' second attempt at the crown. The Taft-based squad managed to advance to the Finals the next three seasons but fell short at the hands of Far Eastern University each time.   “Nu’ng pumunta ako ng La Salle, sa pagkakaalam ko hindi pa kami malakas na team eh,” said Santos-Ng “So talagang si Coach Ramil dahan-dahan n’ya talagang winorkout ang mga players and the program,” she added. “Dun mo makikita na si Coach Ramil talaga is very dedicated and committed kapag mayroon siyang goal.” After three bridesmaid finishes, DLSU, on Santos-Ng’s second year, exacted revenge on FEU to get back to the throne. DLSU won two more times for its first of three three-peats. Santos-Ng said that De Jesus during that time made his players stay in a dorm for the first time not only to monitor their conditioning but to develop a deeper team chemistry. “‘Yung time na yun gusto nya kaming maging well-bonded. Di lang strong team but well-bonded,” said Santos-Ng. “Kasi you can easily create a strong team eh. Pagsasamahin mo mga malalakas na players from this school. But strong team plus well-bonded team makes a big difference.” The ChocoMucho hitter also added that De Jesus will always look for ways to the unleash the full potential of his players. “Si Coach Ramil hindi siya nauubusan ng idea kung paano kami palakasin. Kung ano ang nakikita niya sa player na kulang talagang magpo-focus siya dun. Di siya magdya-jump kaagad sa ibang gagawin. May pagka-perfectionist siya eh,” she said. Like all of De Jesus’ players Santos-Ng had her share of rough moments while training under his watchful eyes. “Umiiyak din ako sa kanya. Pero makikita mo at the end of the day ‘yung result ng team kung paano kami gumalaw as one sa loob ng court,” she said. De Jesus according to Santos-Ng is also very strict when it comes to discipline.     “Coach Ramil is very consistent on how he manages to protect ‘yung mga players. Ayaw niyang nawawala sa focus,” said Santos-Ng. “Lagi niyang sinasabi na, Hindi ito modeling, hindi ito para magpaganda o magpa-cute. Volleyball itong pinasok nyo.’” “He always reminds us para lang talaga hindi kami mawala dun sa focus na maglaro lang talaga kami ng volleyball,” she added. More than a decade since Santos-Ng finished her tour of duty for the green and white, the Lady Spikers continue to evolve and keep up with the times yet maintain their consistency as one of the finest volleyball program in the collegiate ranks. All thanks to De Jesus.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 28th, 2020

75-year-old tricycle driver killed in Santander fire

CEBU CITY, Philippines — Personnel of the Oslob Fire Station continue to investigate the fire incident that killed a tricycle driver in Barangay Looc, Santander town in southern Cebu, Sunday dawn. Fire Officer 1 Joseph Yongco their investigation seems to be leading to the possibility that Emelio Magalso was the one who started the fire […] The post 75-year-old tricycle driver killed in Santander fire appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJul 13th, 2020

Matt Nieto now serving good old-fashioned burgers

Matt Nieto knows full well that there has to be life after basketball. "Alam ko na hindi pangmatagalan ang basketball because of age or injury kaya as early as now, I try to see what other ventures I could do besides basketball," he shared. "Para after ng basketball career ko, meron pa rin akong other sources of income and hindi lang ako nakadepende sa basketball." And with that, the three-time champion with Ateneo de Manila University is already putting his degree in management economics to good use. "Now that I have graduated, I try to apply all that I learned in Ateneo here in the real world," he said. Enter 1975 Old Fashioned Burgers - Nieto's brand new business serving up burgers cooked by way of a 45-year-old family recipe. While the family recipe had been there since, well, 1975, the opportunity to share it with others didn't present itself until a month ago. "My friend, Kim Nadal, and I have been playing with the idea of putting up a business even before the pandemic started. Then Kim found out his co-worker's son, JM Cancio, was into cooking and the two of them just talked one night all the way until dawn," he shared. From there, "Matty Ice" and Nadal met up with Cancio and the three of them hit if off from the get-go. "The proposal by JM looked promising so it was a yes for us. 'Di nagtagal, we started trying to perfect the old-fashioned patties using a secret recipe from JM's family," he said. For Nieto, the fact that he is making sure a family recipe lives on was the clincher for him to put his full faith on the busines. "That's really what we want to see here - the story of burgers that were first loved by the children and grandchildren of a family in Marikina back in 1970s," he shared. He then continued, "And I'm sure those burgers will mean much to countless customers who long for classic, simple, old-fashioned burgers that will bring them back to a good, old time." Indeed, 1975 Old Fashioned Burgers livew up to its name in each and every order. "The name says it all. Yan kasi yung taon na nabili ng lola (ni JM) yung panghulma ng burger which is what we still use to mold our patties so you can be sure that the burger is a timeless classic prepared with wisdom spanning 45 years." Make no mistake, though, the 23-year-old is not trading in his basketball jersey for chef's uniform anytime soon. As he put it, "My priority is still to be the best player I can be to help Gilas and NLEX." For now, though, all those who want to try out 1975 Old-Fashioned Burgers could let them live up to their name - after all, Nieto guarantees they always and always would. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 28th, 2020

Noose found in stall of Bubba Wallace at Alabama NASCAR race

By JOHN ZENOR AP Sports Writer TALLADEGA, Ala. (AP) — NASCAR said late Sunday that a noose was found in the garage stall of Bubba Wallace at the NASCAR race in Talladega. Wallace is the only full-time Black driver in NASCAR’s elite Cup Series. Two weeks ago, he successfully pushed for NASCAR to ban the Confederate flag at its tracks and properties. NASCAR said it has launched an immediate investigation into the noose. The series says it was “outraged” and said there is no place for racism in NASCAR. On Twitter, Wallace said the “the despicable act of racism and hatred leaves me incredibly saddened and serves as a painful reminder of how much further we have to go as a society and ow persistent we must be in the fight against racism.” “As my mother told me today, ‘They are just trying to scare you,'” he wrote. " This will not break me, I will not give in nor will I back down. I will continue to proudly stand for what I believe in. THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. AP's previous story is below It cost $40 to get into Talladega Superspeedway if you were one of 5,000 people to purchase a ticket and live within 150 miles of the NASCAR staple. But to get to the seat in Row 26A, Seat 12W, you first likely passed dozens of people outside the track proudly displaying Confederate flags, some flying them from pickup trucks. Look up, and you might spot a plane pulling a banner of the Southern symbol, now banned from being displayed inside race tracks, with the words “Defund NASCAR” The Confederate flags that once flew openly around the infield and stands are still for sale across the street. NASCAR hasn't disclosed how it will handle fans flying flags. With the most fans allowed into a NASCAR race during the Coronavirus pandemic it put the spotlight on the Confederate flag ban. There weren't any immediate reports of how many, if any, flags were confiscated or taken down at the venue. NASCAR two weeks ago said it would ban the Confederate flag at its tracks and venues following a call from Bubba Wallace, the series’ only full-time Black driver in the Cup Series. The ban was not tested last week at a track near Miami, where 1,000 military members attended the race. This weekend was seen as a much bigger challenge in the heart of the South with up to 5,000 fans allowed in and a relatively small number of RVs cleared to camp nearby. The ban drew informal protests Saturday and Sunday alike, with cars and pickup trucks driving along nearby roads flying the flag and parading past the entrance to the superspeedway, along with the plane. NASCAR did not acknowledged the plane or its banner, though executive Steve O’Donnell Tweeted a picture of black and white hands shaking: “You won’t see a photo of a jackass flying a flag over the track here...but you will see this...Hope EVERYONE enjoys the race today.” Rapper Ice Cube even tweeted about the plane saying, “(Expletive) him NASCAR, you got new fans in this household.” The race was pushed back to Monday afternoon because of heavy rain and lightning. But before the rain came, the scene was a dramatic departure from the Talladega norm. “It’s weird. It’s eerie,” said David Radvansky, 32, from suburban Atlanta, who brought his wife and boys, 3 and 6. Radvansky, who started coming to Talladega in the 1990s when his father parked cars at races, applauded NASCAR’s decision to ban the Confederate flags. “I don’t think there’s a place for it in NASCAR, to be honest with you,” the 32-year-old said. “That doesn’t sit well with all the good ole boys but it is what it is.” Fans had to go through screening and wear masks to get in for the race, though a few were walking around inside without theirs on. But lines seemed to flow quickly and the sun was shining until about an hour before the race, when rain and lightning started. Bathrooms had arrows directing patrons which way to enter or exit, and attendants lined the way holding signs urging them to “please wear your masks.” Directly across from the track, Ed Sugg’s merchandise tent flew Confederate flags prominently in a display alongside Trump for 2020 banners and an American flag. “They’re doing very well,” said the Helena, Alabama resident, who has been selling an array of wares at NASCAR races for 21 years. “People are disappointed that NASCAR has taken that stance. It’s been around for as long as all of us have been. I don’t think anybody really connects it to any kind of racism or anything. It’s just a Southern thing. It’s transparent. It’s just a heritage thing.” Longtime racing fan Faron Elam, meanwhile, wasn’t thrilled by the fan restrictions and more minimal atmosphere. “This ain’t racing,” said Elam, a 50-year-old from Cottondale, Alabama. “This is nothing like it used to be. You used to come up here and have fun, go to all the souvenir trucks, everything. “You’ve got two out front now. That’s all you’ve got and if you don’t like who’s in it, then you don’t get anything.” Then again, it was to provide the key element for the fan of everything from dirt track to drag racing. “Just anything with speed,” Elam said......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 22nd, 2020

BATCH CLASH: Season 76 Bulldogs vs Season 81 Bulldogs

Seven years ago, National University made history by claiming its breakthrough UAAP men’s volleyball title. The following season, the Bulldogs blasted their way to back-to-back titles. It took NU four years to return on top after snapping Ateneo de Manila’s three-season reign before duplicating a repeat championship the following year. Two different breeds of Bulldogs will take center stage in this week’s edition of Batch Clash as we pit the back-to-back NU champion teams of Season 76 and Season 81. Just like in the past showdowns, we’ll see which team will shine brighter based on offense, net defense, floor defense, level of competition and playoff performances. Then, we'll let you decide which batch is better.   OFFENSE Height, speed and power. That’s the name of the game for the Bulldogs. Both teams took advantage of these strengths to extend their respective reigns. Batch 76 had Reuben Inaudito, Edwin Tolentino, Peter Torres and Berlin Paglinawan while Batch 81 featured the high-flying Bryan Bagunas, Nico Almendras and James Natividad. With the departure of Ateneo’s Marck Espejo, Bagunas dominated the scoring category in Season 81. The 6-foot-5 open spiker averaged 20.3 points per game in his swan song. Bagunas was also hitting with precision, nailing 53.49% success rate in attacks while landing an average of 0.47 ace per frame. Bagunas had a steady back-up with Almendras averaging 10.2 points per game while Natividad normed with nine markers per outing. Natividad had a 42.92% spike success rate and averaged 0.24 ace per set while Almendras had a 38.93% attacking rate.   Compared to Batch 81, the Bulldogs of Season 76 had more balanced scoring. Inaudito averaged 12.1 points per game with a 40.18% success rate in kills and an average of 0.23 ace per frame. Paglinawan averaged 11.5 points per game, Torres had 10.3 markers per outing while Tolentino normed 9.8 points. Tolentino was hitting 36.14% with a 0.31 average ace per set.   In the setters’ head-to-head match-up, Vince Mangulabnan was dishing out an average of 6.75 excellent sets per frame while Owa Retamar had 7.40 assists per set. Incidentally, both NU playmakers finished second in the category to Ateneo setters Ish Polvorosa and Lawrence Magadia, in their respective seasons. As a team, Batch 76 had a 41.96% success rate in spikes and landed an average of 1.17 aces per set. Batch 81 recorded a 45.82% success rate in attacks with 1.27 aces per frame. In setting, Batch 76 tallied 6.98 average excellent sets per frame compared to Batch 81’s 7.84.   NET DEFENSE      In the battle of defensive walls, Batch 76 had three players in the top 10. Torres averaged 0.69 kill blocks per set, Reyson Fuentes had 0.62 while Inaudito posted 0.54. Batch 76 normed 3.10 kills blocks per frame. Taking care of business at the net for Batch 81 were Francis Saura (0.62), Kim Malabunga (0.49) and Almendras (0.47). Batch 81 averaged 2.80 kill blocks per set.   FLOOR DEFENSE Floor defense wasn’t really the strong suit of NU ever since. Both batches did struggle when their net defense didn't work the way they wanted it to. Batch 76 was dead last in digs as a team with just 3.87 digs per set and its reception wasn’t impressive either with just a 21.29% efficiency. Libero Mark Dizon of Batch 76 averaged 1.27 digs per set and a 29.74% efficiency in reception. Batch 81 averaged 11.24 digs per set with a decent 55.61% efficiency rate in reception. However, unlike Batch 76, the Season 81 Bulldogs didn’t rely too much in their libero for digs. Ricky Marcos had 3.51 digs per set and was backed by Natividad’s 2.42. Marcos had a 62.20% reception efficiency.     LEVEL OF COMPETITION Batch 76 saw the rise of what would become one of the most explosive and well-rounded players in the UAAP in years. Ateneo’s then rookie Espejo made an immediate impact in his first year together with Blue Eagles Rex Intal and Ysay Marasigan. University of Sto. Tomas had that season’s top scorer Mark Alfafara, Romnick Rico and Anthony Arbast. Bannering Adamson University were Michael Sudaria and Bryan Saraza while Red Christensen and Raymark Woo led De La Salle University. Far Eastern University had Ian Dela Calzada, Greg Dolor and Alexis Faytaren. University of the Philippines was spearheaded by Evan Raymundo and Jeffrey Lansangan; while University of the East had Angelone Soria and Ace Mandani. Batch 81 also battled against a strong field with FEU’s Jude Garcia and JP Bugaoan; Ateneo’s Tony Koyfman and Ron Medalla; Paolo Pablico and George Labang of Adamson; Chris Dumago and Billie Anima of DLSU; UST’s Joshua Umandal and Wewe Mendina; Mark Millete and Jerry San Pedro of UP and the pair of Cliffor Inoferio and Lloyd Josafat of UE.      PLAYOFF PERFORMANCE Batch 76 finished the elimination round with a 12-2 win-loss record for the top seed. The Season 76 Bulldogs swept Adamson, which had to defeat DLSU in the playoff for no. 4, in the Final Four to face a young Ateneo side. In the Finals, the seasoned NU squad bullied its way to series sweep of the Blue Eagles as the Bulldogs won their second title. Batch 81 started off on the wrong foot, dropping their first game against the Tamaraws. The Bulldogs bounced back from a bad start to win their next 13 games to take the top seed in the Final Four. They ran over Adamson in straight sets in the semis before crushing the Tams in two games in the Finals rematch of the two proud teams six years the making.   VERDICT Who do you think is the better Bulldogs squad?   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 4th, 2020

Cebu City Fire Department looking into fire that razed UP Cebu canteen

CEBU CITY, Philippines — The Cebu City Fire Department is investigating the fire that burned down the canteen of the University of the Philippines Cebu on Monday dawn, June 2, 2020. According to Senior Fire Officer 3 Hermes Molina, investigator of the case, initial investigations showed that the fire started in the maintenance building beside […] The post Cebu City Fire Department looking into fire that razed UP Cebu canteen appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJun 2nd, 2020

Former and current Lady Spikers reunite in online fund-raiser

De La Salle University alumnae gave encouraging words for the current crop of Lady Spikers in their virtual reunion Sunday night in the Kada-Uno Lasalyano fundraiser for families affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Led by DLSU legends Michele Gumabao, Aby Marano, Ara Galang, Kim Fajardo, Mika Reyes and Dawn Macandili, the Lady Spikers came together for an online fan meet and greet, games and a question and answer session in the six-hour program aimed at raising funds for over 1,000 families. In the cancelled UAAP Season 82, the Lady Spikers showed much promise in their lone match as they defeated archrival and defending champion Ateneo De Manila University in four sets. Rookies Leila Cruz and Thea Gagate as well as sophomore Jolina Dela Cruz, Michelle Cobb and seniors Tin Tiamzon and Aduke Ogunsanya made their intentions clear of reclaiming the throne they lost last year. Unfortunately, the tournament was cut short because of the contagion. Still the Lady Spikers’ performance impressed those who came before them. “Super proud. Nakita naming sila kung papaano mag-training,” said Fajardo, who three titles for the Ramil De Jesus-mentored squad. Macandilli, who was a catalyst on defense for the DLSU’s third three-peat batch from Season 78-80, gave an advice to the current Lady Spikers.       "Lahat ng tao may masasabi sa team ninyo. Maku-compare at maku-compare ang team ninyo sa previous teams ng La Salle. Ang advice ko lang sa inyo ay mag-focus kayo sa kung ano meron sa team ninyo. Huwag kayo maghahanap ng iba na wala naman. Yun naman ang laging sinasabi ni coach,” said Macandili in the video conference which included rookies Jus Jazareno, Ali Borabo, Fifi Sharma, Juls Coronel, Matet Espina, Cruz and Gagate.   “Nasa inyo lahat ng answers, you just have to find it for yourselves," added Macandili. “Sa side ko naman as an audience, wag kayong panghinaan ng loob,” said Reyes. “Ngayon very challenging talaga ito for us kasi very uncertain ang future. Let’s enjoy this moment muna and i-appreciate natin ang mga dumadating na blessings sa atin.” Galang, who came back from a career-threatening knee injury to help the Lady Spikers reclaim the crown in 2016, remains upbeat that her alma mater will make it back on top. "Excited talaga ako sa Season 82 kasi nakakasama natin sila sa training. Nakikita natin ‘yung pag-improve nila. Sayang kasi di nila ma-showcase. Alam kong dadating ‘yung time na ma-share nila talent nila. Keep working hard, magtiwala sa sarili at magtiwala sa kasama ninyo," said Galang. The event, which also featured performances from Gary Valenciano, Barbie Almabis and Jett Pangan, raised P4,009,241.59. (Watch the event here)  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 25th, 2020

DID YOU KNOW?: Rex Intal is into painting

Rex Intal is an accomplished volleyball player. He won three straight titles in the UAAP while playing for Ateneo de Manila University. He also collected championships in the commercial league and made history when he helped the national team capture a silver medal in the 2019 Southeast Asian Games. But did you know that Rex is also a talented painter?      “Growing up siguro I didn’t know I had talent in art,” Intal told ABS-CBN Sports. “I kept drawing lang and thought my works were normal and anyone could do that.” He likes to draw, but didn’t realize then that he’s actually good at it.    “I compared my artworks with my classmates’ and I thought na baka tinatamad lang sila, haha!” he said. Rex shared that it was during grade school that people started to recognize his talents.    “I think I was Grade 2 ata when I copied and drew Spiderman from the newspaper, then everyone got impressed,” he recalled. “Since then I was hailed as the class artist, haha!” got to squeeze in some time to paint before i go to sleep! #wip pic.twitter.com/xzqqtVgynl — Rex Intal (@rexintal) May 2, 2020 The interest in the arts according to Rex runs in his family. Actually, his brother Phoenix Fuel Masters forward JC launched his first solo exhibit last February after rekindling his interest in the arts recently. “My mother, and two of my brothers, JC and JR have talent in art but they never pursued it,” said Rex. “Well, except for Kuya JC who rekindled his passion two years ago and ventured the art world.” But back then, just like other kids his age, Rex had other interests.   “Growing up I never wanted to be an artist,” he admitted. “I wanted what the other kids dreamed of, a businessman, a doctor, an NBA player, an astronaut,” Rex continued. “I knew so little growing up and I just fixated my mindset na I wanted a lucrative job in the future.” It didn’t help that no one in his family, although gifted in the art, seriously pursued it. “And I knew na I had no one to lean on kasi growing up, ako na lang ‘yung nagdo-drawing,” said Rex. “So I knew I had talent but didn’t wanna pursue it like what they did.” His artistic side had to take a backseat further more when Rex discovered his athletic talent. Following the footsteps of his high-flying and athletic brother JC when he donned the blue and white as part of the Ateneo basketball team, Rex landed a spot on the Blue Eagles volleyball squad. Quick abstract portrait exercise with @MasonNjigha as my model pic.twitter.com/409VYZRJH4 — Rex Intal (@rexintal) May 3, 2020 pic.twitter.com/I0AjHNpo8n — Rex Intal (@rexintal) May 3, 2020 pic.twitter.com/Ca8XgWWxPj — Rex Intal (@rexintal) May 3, 2020 But like soulmates destined for each other, Rex and his love for art crossed paths once again. “Entering college, I took up BS Management in my first year. Latter part of my first year, I was so focused on my course, but I thought it was too broad for me,” he said. “That’s when I saw the BFA Information Design students,” Rex added. “I took a look at their curriculum and saw Drawing, Painting, and Graphic Design classes and I felt that urge and passion again.” He felt his heart beat once again. “I felt na this was more fit for me,” he said. “So in my second year I shifted to BFA Information Design and that’s when I made my first painting.” His first artwork? “It was a dog lang and my brother, JC, wanted to buy it,” said Rex.    “I never really painted ‘til after college. My teammate asked me to paint for his thesis so I painted another piece and my brother wanted to buy it again.” JC, who like his younger brother, found his way back into painting, gave Rex the confidence to pursue his artistic craft.   “Then around a year and a half ago, my brother got inspired to paint. His works are abstract so we have different styles but that gave me the confidence to paint,” he said. “Before kasi I thought I was alone lang in this field but my brother paved the way in the art world and I wanted to follow his footsteps, just like how I followed his footsteps in being an athlete,” Rex continued. “We both represented the country in sports and we also entered the arts industry but different fields. He plays basketball I play volleyball. He paints abstract I paint portraits.” Art also serves as a way for the Intal brothers to bond. “Sometimes we would paint together in his house and my other brothers would either watch or join in so nagiging bonding na rin,” said Rex, who also found a way to help the frontliners battling the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic through his art.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 4th, 2020

PVL, PSL vow to make unified tournament happen

The dream of a unified tournament that will pit the best teams from the country’s two prestigious club volleyball leagues is looking bright with both camps vowing to make it happen. Officials from the Premier Volleyball League and the Philippine Superliga had a series of meetings since December last year to plot a unified all-Filipino competition that fans have been waiting to see for years. “I’m talking with (PSL) chairman Philip Juico and may mga inaayos pa kami,” said PVL organizer Sports Vision president Ricky Palou. Unfortunately, the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic halted the talks with Luzon put under enhanced community quarantine that has been extended until April 30. But both sides are looking forward to come back to the table once the ECQ is lifted. “As soon as the government announces that it is safe to hold sporting events again such as the PBA, or volleyball tournaments such as ours, we will get back to work and get back where we left off in our talks,” said PSL president Dr. Ian Laurel, who once worked with Sports Vision as an analyst for the defunct V-League, which was rebranded as the PVL in 2017. To be finalized are the guidelines and format as well as the duration of the tournament. Also to be settled are the officiating, the number of participating teams and the broadcast. ABS-CBN S+A airs the PVL while TV5 is the broadcast partner of the PSL.    “I cannot say at what percent we are towards our goal kasi there are still things that we need to settle like the officiating, the tournament format among others,” Laurel said. “So I cannot say na talagang on the go na. But I can say that both parties are 100 percent committed on working together.” Initially, both camps are looking to unwrap the tournament around August but with the COVID-19 situation, the project might be pushed back next year. Because of the contagion, the PSL was forced to suspend its ongoing import-flavored Grand Prix while the PVL has yet to begin its Season 4. The PVL is looking to tweak its calendar by holding the Open Conference as its season-opener instead of the Reinforced Conference.    “Initially, dapat this year [ang tournament] but ‘yun nga with how the things are going with the coronavirus and everything baka next year na,” according to Palou. The PVL official added that they have to iron out the number of participating teams. Both leagues currently have eight active club teams each. “PSL wants all the teams involved. I met with the team owners before all of this noong January. The feeling of the team owners ng PVL ay eight teams ay masyadong mahaba ang tournament,” said Palou. “They are looking at a shorter tournament. Maybe 'yung top four teams lang ng PVL and PSL and we will not play each other anymore kasi nga may ranking na rin naman sa mga liga para it will be a shorter tournament,” he added. If the unified tourney pushes through fans will get to witness PVL stars like Alyssa Valdez, Jema Galanza, Myla Pablo, Jia Morado, Maddie Madayag and Bea de Leon go up against Kalei Mau, Ara Galang, Aby Marano, Jaja Santiago, Mika Reyes, Kim Fajardo, Dawn Macandili and Rachel Anne Daquis of the PSL. It will also pit PVL’s top clubs Creamline, PetroGazz, BanKo and Motolite against PSL powerhouse squads F2 Logistics, Petron, Chery Tiggo (Foton) and Cignal. Ultimately, it will be a groundbreaking project for Philippine volleyball fans.     “We want to make it happen for volleyball fans,” said Laurel. “This is for them. This is for Philippine volleyball.”   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 19th, 2020

Whatever happened to Gilas Pilipinas 2.0?

Since program’s inception, Gilas Pilipinas has been the name associated with the Philippine men’s basketball team. It gave the national team the identity it has used for a decade already. Gilas has gone through many iterations, but the current lineup, regardless of who the players are, only go by the general “Gilas” term. But early in the program’s history, each team went by a specific number, unofficially used by pretty much everyone to distinguish the teams that competed in different tournaments. It made sense too, since each team had a completely different identity. In later years, Gilas has improved in using the program as a way to ensure national basketball continuity. Nevertheless, each of the earlier Gilas versions had their success and failures. Here’s what happened to each of them.   Whatever happened to Gilas 2.0? Main tournament: 2013 FIBA-Asia Championships @ Manila, Philippines Prize: 3 tickets to the 2014 FIBA World Cup Result: Silver medal + World Cup berth (beat South Korea in semis, lost to Iran in gold medal game) Head coach: Chot Reyes Gilas 2.0 was the second time Chot Reyes handled the Philippine national team. The first time he did it, Coach Chot’s squad only managed 9th in the 2007 FIBA-Asia Championships in Japan. Six years later in Manila, Reyes is back at it again, and with some players from his 2007 team joining him too. Gilas’ silver-medal finish in the 2013 FIBA-Asia Championships and ensuing FIBA World Cup appearance in 2014 is Coach Chot’s best run as national team coach. Reyes would return to coach the national team in late 2016 before resigning for good in 2018. The Players: #4 Jimmy Alapag Alapag is back for a second straight stint with Gilas Pilipinas and this is the team where Jimmy carves out his legacy as one of the best national team players ever. In the semifinals against long-time nemesis South Korea, Alapag would hit the biggest shot in program history, pushing the Philippines to its first World Cup appearance in years. [Related: FIBA: Mighty Jimmy and the shot that introduced Gilas to the World] Once in the World Cup, Jimmy would once again hit the big shot to give Gilas its first World Cup win in four decades with an overtime decision against Senegal. Jimmy has since retired twice from basketball. He won the ABL title as head coach for San Miguel-Alab Pilipinas in the 2018 season. #5 LA Tenorio Tenorio already gave a glimpse of what he can do in the national team one-year prior, leading Gilas Pilipinas to the Jones Cup championship while winning MVP honors. In his first Gilas experience, LA started most games at point guard and was the Philippines’ best two-way option at the position. Together with Alapag and Jayson Castro, Tenorio formed perhaps the best point guard rotation in program history. After Gilas 2.0, it would be years for LA to make it back to Gilas, but once he did, he got a 2019 SEA Games gold medal to show for it. Tenorio just won another title with Barangay Ginebra, their fourth since 2016. #6 Jeff Chan Gilas 2.0 was flanked by shooters all over and the best one in Manila was Jeff Chan without a doubt. It’s not like Chan was a complete unknown when he was selected to Gilas, he did win Finals MVP for Rain or Shine in 2012. However, Chan wasn’t exactly tested when it comes to national team play. He got tested, and he passed with flying colors. Chan was the best shooter for Gilas both in total 3-point field goals made and percentage, shooting an insane 47.6 percent from deep. Chan won another title with ROS in 2016, before he was moved to Phoenix and eventually, Ginebra.  #7 Jayson Castro Gilas 2.0 was Jayson Castro’s coming out party for the Philippine national team. Sharing minutes with Jimmy Alapag and LA Tenorio, Castro was the weapon unleashed by Gilas when the going got tough. And as the tournament got deeper, it got more and more evident that The Blur was the national team’s best local. After the tournament, Castro was named in the All-Star team, and his reign as the best point guard in Asia also started his journey as a Gilas legend. While he’s already retired twice from Gilas, we’ll believe Castro is done when he doesn’t actually play. #8 Gary David Even as the PBA’s best scorer at the time, Gary David readily accepted his diminished role with Gilas 2.0. Out of all players, David finished second to last in scoring, beating out only June Mar Fajardo, who played seven games and only saw 31 minutes of total court action. Nevertheless, David was a key piece that made the Gilas 2.0 machine work, his explosive performance in the quarterfinals against Kazakhstan set up the South Korea game quite nicely too. Post-PBA, Gary David is seeing action in the MPBL, even being crowned as the league’s 3-point king in 2019. #9 Ranidel De Ocampo RDO was even better in Gilas 2.0 than he was in the original Gilas. Much like Castro, De Ocampo was a reliable weapon for coach Chot’s national team, his outside shooting ultimately proving crucial for Gilas. Ranidel was behind only Chan in 3-point field goals made and percentage for Gilas, he also hit the forgotten triple that help bury South Korea in the semifinals. RDO is technically still not retired, but injuries have forced him to slow way down in his later years in the PBA as a Meralco Bolt. #10 Gabe Norwood Norwood was one of the players from Coach Chot’s 2007 Philippine team that was present for Gilas 2.0 in Manila. Gabe didn’t do much scoring, but he played the most minutes out of everyone and was easily Gilas Pilipinas’ best defender all tournament long. Norwood’s clutch block on Kim Min-goo helped secure Gilas’ win over South Korea in the semifinals. Gabe is one of the longest-tenured players not just in the Gilas program but in Philippine national team history. In 2019, he made the World Cup for the second straight time. #11 Marcus Douthit Douthit was back for Gilas 2.0 and while his production was lowered compared to the original Gilas, he was still the rock and foundation of the national team. [Related: Whatever happened to Gilas Pilipinas 1.0?] Kuya Marcus’ stint ended early, as his tournament essentially ended before halftime of the semifinals of the game against South Korea due to injury, forcing Gilas to go true All-Filipino the rest of the way. Much like in Gilas 1.0, Douthit led Gilas in scoring and rebounding with 11.9 points and 9.4 rebounds. #12 Larry Fonacier The second designated shooter for the national team in 2013, Larry Fonacier was the classic 3-and-D player for Gilas 2.0. Gilas 2.0 was Fonacier’s only Gilas stint, and winning a silver medal is not a bad result for being one-and-done.  After Gilas 2.0, Larry would continue to play for TNT for a couple more seasons, before moving on to join the NLEX Road Warriors as one of the team’s veterans. #13 June Mar Fajardo June Mar Fajardo was a very raw prospect when Gilas 2.0 won silver in the 2013 FIBA-Asia Championships. The future six-time PBA MVP only played in seven games and scored a grand total of three points. Nevertheless, Fajardo was a completely different player following his stint with Gilas 2.0. After he came out of his initial stint with the national team, Fajardo proceeded to dominate the PBA for half a decade and counting, and his consistent Gilas stints in the future also slowly helped him be a consistent contributor in international play. For all intents and purposes, Fajardo could still be a key piece with the country co-hosts the 2023 World Cup, 10 years after Gilas 2.0. #14 Japeth Aguilar While still limited, Japeth was an improved version of himself by the time he played for Gilas 2.0.  He was the explosive reliever for the frontline, and was a crucial part of the rotation when Douthit suffered an injury during the South Korea game. Just like Norwood, Japeth has reached the 10-year mark in service of Gilas Pilipinas program and the national team as a whole, and Gilas 2.0 was just one of his many stops. #15 Marc Pingris The heart and soul of Gilas 2.0, Marc Pingris personified the national team’s famous battle cry. Gilas 2.0’s emotional leader, Ping had his teammates dig deep when they faced the greatest adversity of their World Cup bid in the semifinals against South Korea that eventually led to an iconic breakthrough. While his numbers won’t wow anyone, Ping’s leadership and influence in the national team resonates to this day, and it all started in Gilas 2.0.   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8   .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 9th, 2020