Advertisements


How we lost the edge after EDSA ‘86

The EDSA revolution in 1986 is celebrated as an important date in the nation’s history......»»

Category: financeSource: philstar philstarFeb 24th, 2021

Column: Woods gets to see and hear how the other half lives

By DOUG FERGUSON AP Golf Writer OLYMPIA FIELDS, Ill. (AP) — Tiger Woods arrived at Olympia Fields for the first time in 17 years, this time with no one around to chase after his every move from the moment he stepped out of the car until he walked off the course. That's not a bad thing. He'll be in a red shirt on Sunday with about the same number of people. That's not good, at least not for him. Woods is learning after three tournaments what others have begun to realize over the last three months. Some players thrive on energy from the crowd as a pick-me-up. Now the reaction, the volume, is the same for a birdie as a double bogey. Woods is one of those players who feeds off noise. “Always have,” he said. “I've played in front of thousands of people ever since I turned pro 24 years ago. It's always been odd when I haven't played in front of people. In one way, it's been nice between tees not getting tapped or getting a glove pulled out of my pocket. Those are things I've had to deal with for a very long time. “But you hit good shots and you get on nice little runs ... we don't have the same energy, the same fan energy.” This is not his issue alone, nor is it the reason he has yet to finish in the top 35 in the three tournaments he has played since golf returned from the coronavirus-caused shutdown. Hitting good shots and making putts goes a long way in any environment. Graeme McDowell was walking along the ninth fairway in the middle of his second round last week at the TPC Boston when he said he felt like a “golf zombie.” “It's like I have no soul,” he said. The courses are different and look the same. They're empty. McDowell spoke of needing the adrenaline he gets from the crowd around the first tee at a U.S. Open or Ryder Cup. Maybe some players do better with no one watching, especially if they're on edge and need something to calm them down. McDowell isn't one of them. Neither is Rory McIlroy. He played the final two rounds with Woods, as big a draw as there is in golf, with hardly anyone watching. Woods began the final round with four straight birdies and the only buzz came from Twitter. McIlroy knows about ebbs and flows in his game. He once missed four out of five cuts and won three out of four tournaments, all in a span of four months in 2012. But his play since returning to an empty stage in June is worth noting. He had had seven consecutive top 5s, including a victory at a World Golf Championship, and reached No. 1 in the world. Since the return, he has seven straight tournaments out of the top 10 and has yet to reach the back nine with a chance to win. Coincidence? Maybe. Three months off surely cost him some momentum. “This is going to sound really bad,” McIlroy said, “but I feel like the last few weeks, I've just been going through the motions. ... And look, that's partly to do with the atmosphere and partly to do with how I'm playing. I'm not inspiring myself, and I'm trying to get inspiration from outside sources to get something going. I can definitely see where Graeme is coming from." That might allow McIlroy to reconsider what he once said about Woods. He played with Woods and Justin Thomas in the opening two rounds at Riviera a few years ago and was amazed by all the commotion around Woods. “I swear, playing in front of all that, he gives up half a shot a day on the field. Like, it's two shots a tournament he has to give to the field because of all that goes on around,” McIlroy said that day. “Whoever is teeing off at 8:30 in the morning doesn't get that and can just go about his business. He has to deal with that every single time.” McIlroy missed the point. If all that commotion costs Woods two shots to the field, what does it cost the players with him? Right now, nothing. Without spectators, has Woods lost an advantage he once had? “Absolutely,” Woods replied. "Anyone who has played in front of thousands of people, it is very different. That's always been one of the things I've become accustomed to. The guys who played with me, who haven't become accustomed to it, they have only experienced one round here and there. That's been every round I've played for over two decades. “That advantage — for me, and some of the other top players — trying to deal with all that noise and the movement, that experience is no longer there.” Nick Faldo touched on this when he was discussing the 10-year anniversary of Woods winning the 1997 Masters, a watershed moment in golf. Faldo said that when he slipped the green jacket on Woods that Sunday, he thought the Masters would be the only major he could win. Sure, Augusta National suited his game. “But also because the Masters was the only major that the media was kept outside the ropes,” Faldo said. "And I thought that was going to be his biggest challenge. Now it’s his greatest asset. Everyone joining him now on the weekend at a major goes into his world. That’s Tiger’s arena. Other guys will step into that arena one week and go back out. He’s there all the time. And good luck coming into his world.” It's a new world for everyone now. It's especially different for Woods, not so much for some of the players paired with him. For the less accomplished players who always wondered what it was like to be in his shoes, the absence of spectators has allowed Woods to see what it's like to be in theirs......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 26th, 2020

Rays hold Yankees to 2 hits in 1-0 win

By The Associated Press ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Pinch-hitter Michael Perez hit a sacrifice fly in the eighth inning on his 28th birthday, six Tampa Bay pitchers combined on a two-hitter and the Tampa Bay Rays beat the AL East-leading New York Yankees 1-0 on Friday night. Yoshi Tsutsugo drew a leadoff walk from Adam Ottavino (2-1) in the eighth and went to second with one out when Kevin Kiermaier walked. Both runners advanced a base on a wild pitch before Perez put the Rays up 1-0 on his fly to center. Chaz Roe (2-0) went the final two innings for the win. Masahiro Tanaka allowed one hit and struck out five over five innings, retiring his final 13 batters after giving up a first-inning single to Yandy Diaz. The Yankees’ right-hander needed just 59 pitches in his second start after beginning the season on the concussion list after being struck in the head by Giancarlo Stanton’s liner during a July 4th summer camp simulated game. Three New York pitchers also limited the Rays to just two hits. MARLINS 4, METS 3 NEW YORK (AP) — Francisco Cervelli hit a three-run homer, Humberto Mejia impressed in his abbreviated major league debut and Miami kept up its surprising surge. The Marlins won their sixth in a row and improved to 7-1 — they’re 5-0 since missing more than a week because of the team’s coronavirus outbreak. Cervelli waved and pointed to the imaginary fans in the seating areas after hitting his second homer of the season. Jonathan Villar added an RBI double in Miami’s four-run second. Dominic Smith homered for the Mets, who have lost seven of nine. New York scored its other runs in the eighth on a throwing error by third baseman Brian Anderson and RBI single by J.D. Davis. Stephen Tarpley (2-0) pitched two innings for the win. Nick Vincent escaped a bases-loaded jam in the eighth and finished for his first save since 2016 with Seattle. Michael Wacha (1-2) allowed four runs and six hits in five innings. WHITE SOX 2, INDIANS 0 CHICAGO (AP) — Dylan Cease worked his way through five shutout innings, and the Chicago White Sox beat Aaron Civale and Cleveland. Cease walked the leadoff man four times and hit a batter, but wiggled out of trouble each time. The right-hander allowed two hits and struck out four. The Indians went 1 for 8 with runners in scoring position and left 10 runners on base, continuing a season-long problem and wasting a terrific start by Civale. They had won three in a row. Civale (1-2) allowed five hits, struck out five and walked one in seven innings. Cleveland played without manager Terry Francona and hitting coach Ty Van Burkleo. Francona missed his sixth straight game while addressing a gastrointestinal issue he has been dealing with for months. The team announced before the series opener that Van Burkleo had opted out of the 2020 season because of the coronavirus. RED SOX 5, BLUE JAYS 3 BOSTON (AP) — Alex Verdugo hit two solo homers over the Green Monster, Mitch Moreland had a two-run shot and Boston’s beleaguered staff rebounded to lift the Red Sox past Toronto. Verdugo also robbed Travis Shaw of a homer with a leaping grab and Moreland had a bases-loaded walk to help Boston win its second straight following a four-game losing streak. Cavan Biggio hit a solo homer, and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Bo Bichette each had an RBI double for Toronto, which has dropped five of six. Moreland’s homer sailed just over the 380-foot sign at the edge of the Blue Jays’ bullpen in right off starter Tanner Roark (1-1) in the third inning for his fourth homer. Reliever Heath Hembree (2-0) got three outs for the victory and Brandon Workman the final three for his third save. ROYALS 3, INDIANS 2 KANSAS CITY, Mo, (AP) — Ryan McBroom hit a go-ahead homer in the sixth inning and Kansas City held Minnesota to a pair of solo homers. Nick Heath and Nicky Lopez also drove in runs for the Royals, who have won two straight after a six-game slide. Jakob Junis served up homers to Byron Buxton and Marwin Gonzalez before leaving with two outs in the fifth inning, and Greg Holland (2-0) led four relievers in holding down the Twins the rest of the way. Trevor Rosenthal retired the final three batters in order for his second save. Matt Wisler (0-1) served up McBroom’s homer as Minnesota lost a one-run game for the second consecutive night. REDS 8, BREWERS 3 MILWAUKEE (AP) — Trevor Bauer turned in another stellar outing, and Matt Davidson and Nick Castellanos homered to lead Cincinnati. Bauer (2-0) gave up three hits and one run in six innings while striking out 12. The Reds scored six runs in the second off Milwaukee starter Eric Lauer (0-1), ending a 24-inning scoring drought. Cincinnati had pushed across three runs before Davidson’s three-run homer, his first of the season, which barely cleared the wall in center field. The Reds (6-8) lost 13-0 to Cleveland on Thursday night, failing to score in the last 23 innings of the home-and-home series. PADRES 3, DIAMONDBACKS O SAN DIEGO (AP) — Zach Davies retired the first 13 Arizona batters, Fernando Tatis Jr. hit a leadoff homer and rookies Jake Cronenworth and Edward Olivares also went deep to lead San Diego. Davies (2-1) took a perfect game into the fifth before giving up consecutive one-out singles to Eduardo Escobar and David Peralta. He got out of the jam by retiring the next two batters on popups. Davies allowed three singles in 5 2/3 innings, struck out six and walked none. Four relievers finished the combined four-hitter for San Diego’s first shutout. Kirby Yates pitched the ninth for his second save in two chances. Luke Weaver (0-3) went only three innings, allowing two runs and two hits with three strikeouts and one walk. TIGERS 17, PIRATES 13, 11 INNINGS PITTSBURGH (AP) — Niko Goodrum drove in five runs, two on a double in a big 11th inning that sent Detroit past Pittsburgh. Both teams finished with 16 hits, surprising since each club had four players in the starting lineup batting under .190. Those numbers soon changed as Detroit played its first game in five days. Erik Gonzalez drove in six runs. He homered, doubled and singled twice as Pittsburgh lost for the eighth time in nine games and fell to 3-11. It was 12-all after nine innings and Jeimer Candelario broke a 13-all tie with an RBI single in the 11th. Austin Romine singled home another run and Goodrum capped the inning with his line drive to right field. Candelario finished with three hits and three RBIs. Rookie Bryan Garcia (2-0) got the win despite giving up the 10th-inning run. Dovydas Neverauskas (0-2) allowed all four runs in the 11th. ATHLETICS 3, ASTROS 2, 13 INNINGS OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Marcus Semien singled home the winning run in the bottom of the 13th to lift Oakland to its seventh straight win in a game that matched the longest this season with baseball’s new extra-innings rule. Alex Bregman hit an RBI double in the top of the 13th inning only for the A’s to tie it on Austin Allen’s single in the bottom half against Cy Sneed (0-2). J.B. Wendelken (1-0) worked three strong innings and the A’s finally delivered after squandering bases-loaded chances in the 10th and 12th. Houston lost its third straight. The Astros were supposed to visit Oakland months ago in late March for their first road trip of 2020 after a sign-stealing scam that blemished baseball during the offseason. Coronavirus delayed the Bay Area trip. Robbie Grossman hit a tying homer in the seventh and Gold Glove third baseman Matt Chapman made a terrific stop on Jose Altuve’s sharp grounder to keep the game tied in the 10th. ROCKIES 8, MARINERS 4 SEATTLE (AP) — Daniel Murphy had a key two-run single and later hit a two-run home run, Garrett Hampson and Charlie Blackmon added solo shots, and Colorado won for the sixth time in seven games. Murphy’s hit with two outs in the sixth ended the night for Seattle starter Yusei Kikuchi (0-1) and gave Colorado a 4-1 lead. Colorado then feasted on Seattle’s shaky bullpen. Hampson hit his first home run of the season with two outs in the seventh, and Blackmon led off the eighth with his third long ball. Murphy capped his night lining the first pitch from reliever Yohan Ramriez into the right-field seats with one out in the eighth. Colorado starter Antonio Senzatela (3-0) threw six strong innings, allowing two earned runs and struck out five. DODGERS 7, GIANTS 2 LOS ANGELES (AP) — Mookie Betts homered for the first time at Dodger Stadium, and Max Muncy, Will Smith and Edwin Ríos went deep to lead Los Angeles. The Dodgers have won three in a row and eight of 10. Betts was back in the lineup for the first time since injuring his left middle finger last Sunday in Phoenix. He didn’t waste any time, doubling in his first at-bat. He homered into the left-field pavilion in the third, tying the game 1-all. Two batters later, Justin Turner’s RBI single gave Los Angeles the lead for good, 2-1. The Dodgers pummeled Jeff Samardzija in the fourth. Muncy homered to the right-field pavilion leading off. Smith slugged his second homer of the season — both against the Giants — that eluded a leaping Darin Ruf in left field, extending the lead to 5-1. Samardzija (0-2) struggled again in the fifth, and was pulled after loading the bases with no outs. Samardzija was charged with six runs (five earned) and seven hits in four-plus innings. Dylan Floro (1-0) got the victory, giving up one hit in one inning with two strikeouts. RANGERS 4, ANGELS 3 ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Mike Trout homered again on his birthday, but Robinson Chirinos drove in two runs without a hit and Texas snapped a three-game losing streak. Trout turned 29, and homered for the fifth time in the seven big league games he has played on his birthday. The three-time AL MVP put the Angels up 2-0 in the first with his 444-foot drive over their bullpen in left-center. Chirinos had a sacrifice fly in the second inning, then walked with the bases loaded as part of a three-run fourth when the Rangers went ahead to stay when all of those runs were unearned. Jordan Lyles (1-1), one of three offseason additions to the Rangers rotation, struck out five in 5 1/3 innings. Rafael Montero, activated from the injured list earlier in the day, worked a perfect ninth for his first career save capped by Trout’s game-ending strikeout. Angels starter Griffin Canning (0-2) threw more balls (45) than strikes (43) while walking six batters in 3 2/3 innings. ORIOLES 11, NATIONALS 0 BALTIMORE (AP) — Even Chris Davis got in on the act for the suddenly slugging Orioles, doubling his season total by collecting two of Baltimore’s 19 hits and raising his average from .087 to .143 in a big win over Washington. Seven of the Orioles’ nine starting position players each got at least a pair of hits. José Iglesias led the way by going 4 for 4 with three RBIs, and Renato Núñez added a three-run homer to back left-hander Tommy Milone (1-1), whose six-inning outing was the longest by an Orioles pitcher this year. Milone, who was drafted by the Nationals in 2008 and briefly pitched for them in 2011 and 2018, allowed just three hits and didn’t walk anyone. The Orioles were coming off getting swept in four games at home by the cobbled-together, coronavirus-struck Miami Marlins. But after scoring a grand total of once through the first three games of that series, Baltimore put up seven runs in the finale Thursday, then kept on swinging well Friday against the reigning World Series champion Nationals and starter Aníbal Sánchez (0-2)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 8th, 2020

Fighting Maroons raffle off jerseys in fund-raiser for jeepney drivers

University of the Philippines volleyball standouts are extending help to jeepney drivers plying the UP route that are affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.      The Fighting Maroons have pledged to donate their jerseys for the UP College of Human Kinetics Student Council fund-raising drive for jeepney drivers who have lost their source of income since the government imposed a Luzon-wide community quarantine four months ago. Members of the women’s team led by captain Rosie Rosier put their jerseys up for grabs in an online raffle that will take place on August 1 at 6:00 p.m. Ayel Estrañero, Marian Buitre, Tots Carlos, Jessma Ramos, & Rosie Rosier, all part of the historic championships of the UPWVT both in the PSL and PVL pledged to donate their jerseys for the CHK SC's initiative for the UP jeepney drivers.#jerseyparakaymanong pic.twitter.com/KCcv6mRVzl — CHK Student Council (@updchksc) July 20, 2020 Also taking part in the "Manong Tsuper, Ating Suklian" fund-raiser are Ayel Estrañero, Marian Buitre, Tots Carlos, Jessma Ramos and Matthew Gohoc of the men's volleyball team. Proceeds of the raffle will be used to help the 300 families of the jeepney drivers, who have stopped plying their UP-Ikot, UP-Toki, UP-Katipunan, UP-Philcoa, UP-Pantranco, and UP-SM City North EDSA routes since mid-March. Carlos and Rosier will be raffling off their UAAP Season 81 and Season 82 captain's jerseys, respectively. Estrañero and Buitre will donate their 2016 and 2014 V-League jerseys while Ramos and Gohoc, for their part, have pledged their UAAP Season 81 and Season 80 jerseys. A raffle ticket costs P200.00 each......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 21st, 2020

AP Was There: Seles tops Graf in riveting French Open final

By The Associated Press EDITOR’S NOTE -- Every French Open features matches that are memorable for one reason or another. There are upsets. Comebacks. Dramatic moments. Historic accomplishments. The AP is republishing stories about a handful of such matches while the postponed Grand Slam tournament was supposed to be played. One match memorable for the drama and competition between two all-time greats was the 1992 final at Roland Garros between Steffi Graf and Monica Seles. Less than a year later, Seles was stabbed by a spectator at a match in Germany. The following story was sent June 6, 1992. ___ By STEPHEN WILSON AP Sports Writer PARIS (AP) — This was a match no one deserved to lose. Monica Seles and Steffi Graf dueled for two hours and 43 minutes Saturday, matching each other shot for shot, fighting for the lead game after game. Finally, after an epic third set lasting 18 games and 91 minutes, Seles emerged with a 6-2, 3-6, 10-8 victory for her third straight French Open title. “It’s the most emotional match I’ve ever played,” said Seles, who is now halfway to winning the Grand Slam. “This one’s always going to stay in my memory.” “It really couldn’t have been a better final,” she said. “It shows women’s tennis is getting more and more exciting. It’s just too bad for whoever lost. Both deserved to win.” Even in defeat, Graf agreed it was a memorable match. “If you play 10-8 in the final set, it definitely is special,” she said. “Those are very special matches, even if you lose.” Seles became the first woman to capture three consecutive French Opens since Germany’s Hilde Sterling accomplished the feat from 1935 to 1937. Seles, strengthening her hold on the No. 1 ranking, has now won six Grand Slams in her career, including the last five in which she has appeared. She missed Wimbledon last year, but will be competing there in two weeks to try to win the third leg of the Grand Slam. Saturday’s third set provided some of the greatest drama in tennis — men’s or women’s — in recent years. “I’ve never played a set like that in my life,” Seles said. There were furious rallies, fantastic gets, lunging winners, frequent shifts in momentum. Despite fatigue, both players were so pumped up they showed their emotions after nearly every point. Graf would yell “Yes!” clench her fist and slap her hip after a winner. When Seles lost a point, she would shriek “Noooo,” close her eyes and grimace in agony. The lead swung back and forth. Seles was up 5-3. Graf saved four match points in the next game and moved ahead 6-5 and 7-6. Seles broke and went up 8-7. Graf broke back for 8-8. Seles broke again and then finally held serve to close out the match. “I never thought it would last so long,” she said. “I was getting getting a little bit tired. But I could have stayed out there if I had to.” The 18 games in the final set was the most in a women’s final here since 1956, when Althea Gibson beat Angela Mortimer 6-0, 12-10. The 35 total games was one short of the record for a French final since the Open era began in 1968. The 36-game mark was set in 1973 when Margaret Court beat Chris Evert 6-7, 7-6, 6-4. Graf paid tribute to Seles’ refusal to give up. “You have seen it in other matches,” she said. “She is definitely a tough one. Even if it’s close, if she’s tired, she is always going for it. That is definitely a big, big quality.” Graf found no satisfaction in her own gutsy performance. “I mean it’s great the way I came back, the way I fought every time,” she said. “I think it was a very good effort, especially being down 5-3 in the third set. But I’m disappointed the way I played when I was leading.” “Every time I gave her those games,” she said. “I didn’t play those points good enough. I didn’t really try like the games before to run everything down and to go for every shot. But it’s difficult if you have to do that all the time.” The crowd was overwhelmingly in Graf’s favor, repeatedly breaking into rhythmic clapping and chants of “Steffi! Steffi!” “I really can’t say that I have had that support ever before,” Graf said. “It was just amazing.” Seles controlled the first set, winning 12 out the first 14 points. Graf started to raise the level of her play at the end of the first set, even breaking Seles at love in one game. The German seemed to get a psychological boost early in the second set when she saved a break point to prevent Seles from taking a 2-0 lead. Graf gained the edge when she broke for 4-3. She saved three break points to hold for 5-3, then broke Seles at love to win the set. Seles didn’t even bother to chase Graf’s forehand winner on set point. Seles was up a service break at 3-1, 4-2 and 5-3 in the final set. Then came the four match points on Graf’s serve. She erased the first with a deep forehand, the second with a forehand putaway, the third with a forehand into the corner, and the fourth with a skidding slice backhand approach shot. “I said to myself, ‘Just go for it,’” Graf said. “On those points I really didn’t give her a lot of chances. I was trying to be the one who is aggressive.” “Steffi played some great shots under pressure and I played too safe,” Seles said. Seles served for the match in the next game, but Graf kept dictating the points with her big forehand and broke at 15 to even the set at 5-5. The two continued on serve until Seles broke for an 8-7 lead as Graf missed on a short forehand. But Graf broke right back, hitting a perfect backhand drop shot on one point. In the next game, Seles crushed a short crosscourt backhand after a long rally to break for a 9-8 lead. Serving for the match for the third time, Seles went up 40-15. On match point No. 5, Graf responded by ripping a clean forehand winner. But on the sixth, she pounded a forehand into the net. “It was totally up and down,” Seles said. “One or two points really decided it.” Seles won $372,896, putting her over the $5 million mark in career earnings. Graf won $186,457......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 7th, 2020

SUPER SHOWDOWN: Black s Ateneo vs Baldwin s Ateneo

Ateneo de Manila University has, put simply, reigned supreme over UAAP Men's Basketball in recent history. Blue Eagle has been the king eight times out of the last 12 tournaments. That dominance has bookended just three other teams who have won championships in that same timeframe. The first bookend was a five-peat that was engineered by then-already multi-titled mentor Norman Black from 2008 to 2012. The other - from 2017 and still counting - bookend has former national team coach Tab Baldwin calling the shots And Ateneo does not look like its slowing down anytime soon as its future remains secure in the hands of Ivorian tower Ange Kouame, emerging primetime playmayer SJ Belangel, and Filipino-American recruit Dwight Ramos. Between the two bookends, however, which Blue Eagle string of championships shines brighter? That is what we set out to figure out in this ABS-CBN Sports Super Showdown. In grading the greatness of Black's five-peat and Baldwin's three-peat, we will be judging them in five categories (talent, system, level of competition, dominance, and legacy) with a boxing-style 10-point must system determining the decision. TALENT Black's five-peat had Kiefer Ravena while Baldwin's three-peat had Thirdy Ravena. So let's call that a draw. In terms of everything else, however, there is just no doubt that Ateneo had the most talented team for majority of its five-peat. The twin towers of Rabeh Al-Hussaini and Nonoy Baclao were followed by Justin Chua and then Greg Slaughter. Steady Chris Tiu was replaced by Jai Reyes and Eric Salamat who were then replaced by Kirk Long and Emman Monfort who were then replaced by Ravena and Juami Tiongson. At the wings were then likes of Ryan Buenafe, Nico Salva, and Oping Sumalinog. Majority of these players were true blue-chip recruits who decided to go to Ateneo, get-together with other promising prospects, and just run roughshod over the UAAP. Let's be clear here, anybody and everybody would want to go to war with that championship core of Ravena (Thirdy, that is), Isaac Go, and Nieto twins Mike and Matt to go along with whoever the versatile four-man is - be it Vince Tolentino or Raffy Verano or Will Navarro - and either Chibueze Ikeh or Kouame, but in terms of sheer top-level talent, the five-peat has the three-peat beat. Advantage Black's Ateneo, 10-8 SYSTEM The signature of Black's Ateneo teams was a complete team that had a killer inside-outside combo. Tiu and Al-Hussaini. Monfort and Chua. Ravena and Slaughter. And whenever it mattered most, there was always a clutch player to come through - be it Tiu or Salamat or Buenafe. That's the benefit of having the most talented team most of the time. The slight edge here, however, would have to go the egalitarian system Baldwin has installed in these Blue Eagles. Baldwin's boys take pride in the fact that, indeed, all of them are ready and raring to contribute whenever called upon. More often than not, the core plays somewhere between 12 to 24 minutes, but not one player could say his minutes are assured as their mentor always preaches that each and every one of his boys should never stop being better. That means that at any given point in time, somebody is always there to step up for somebody - "next man up" as they love to call it. Take for instance, that four-spot which first saw Tolentino doing the dirty work and once he graduated, Verano just filled in the spot. And when the Filipino-American ran into academic issues, was there any problem whatsoever? None at all because Navarro was there to come to be known as "Mr. Efficiency." Most definitely, there is no better system in collegiate basketball than what Baldwin has in place through this Ateneo three-peat. Advantage Baldwin's Ateneo, 10-9 LEVEL OF COMPETITION Six other member-schools made it to the playoffs at least once during Ateneo's five-peat - the lone exception being the University of the Philippines which was then still trudging through its so-called "dark days". In that run, the Blue Eagles had to contend with Far Eastern University with the likes of Mac Baracael, Mark Barroca, RR Garcia, and Terrence Romeo; University of the East with the likes of Marcy Arellano, Elmer Espiritu, Paul Lee, and James Martinez; Adamson University with the likes of Lester Alvarez, Rodney Brondial, and Alex Nuyles; De La Salle University with the likes of Jvee Casio, Rico Maierhoffer, and Jeron Teng; University of Sto. Tomas with the likes of Dylan Ababou, Karim Abdul, and Jeric Teng; and National University with the likes of Emmanuel Mbe and Ray Parks Jr. For their part, Ateneo's three-peat team saw the Bulldogs and the Red Warriors both fail to make the Final Four during its time on top. Still, they had to run through a gauntlet of good to great teams such as the Ben Mbala and Ricci Rivero-led Green Archers, the Jerrick Ahanmisi and Sean Manganti-led Soaring Falcons, and the Arvin Tolentino and Wendell Comboy-led Tamaraws. Through it all, the Blue Eagles also had to play spoiler in the climb to contention of the Fighting Maroons with Bright Akhuetie, Kobe Paras, Rivero, and Gomez de Liano brothers Javi and Juan as well as the return to relevance of the Growling Tigers with Rhenz Abando, CJ Cansino, Mark Nonoy, and Soulemane Chabi Yo. The difference here then becomes the arrival of MVP-level foreign student-athletes. In La Salle's Mbala, UP's Akhuetie, and UST's Chabi Yo, Ateneo's three-peat team had to wage war with three of the best recruits from abroad before winning the championship. For sure, Al-Hussaini, Chua, and Slaughter mentored by Black would have been able to make something happen if ever they were matched up with those three, but the fact remains that nowadays, there is just more foreign talent in the UAAP. Advantage Baldwin's Ateneo, 10-9 DOMINANCE With a five-peat, Black did something that has not been done in the UAAP since UE won seven titles in a row in the '60s under the legendary Baby Dalupan. Through that time, Ateneo registered a couple of one-loss and a pair of two-loss seasons - and the only struggle, relative to them, was a 10-4, second-seed elimination round finish in Season 73. Still, through that time, the Blue Eagles only had one loss in all of its playoff series - a 68-88 shocker of a defeat to the Red Warriors in Game 2 of the Season 72 Finals. Somehow, though, Baldwin's historic feat was more impressive as their 16-0 romp through Season 82 is the first-ever of its kind in men's basketball. Before this, all previous season sweeps in men's basketball wound up with 14-0 records. The three-peat Blue Eagles also boast of a better elims standing as they only lost a total of three times there in three years. Their two losses in the playoffs are worse compared to the five-peat team, but Season 82's 16-0 is still better than either Season 71 or Season 74's 16-1. Advantage Baldwin's Ateneo, 10-9 LEGACY Black opened the floodgates for Ateneo to be a destination for blue-chip recruits from outside Katipunan. Remember, before this, the Blue Eagles' 2002 championship was built on the shoulders of former Blue Eaglets Rico Villanueva, Wesley Gonzales and Larry Fonacier - the non-homegrown key cogs being LA Tenorio from San Beda High School and two-time UAAP Srs. MVP Rich Alvarez, who played high school ball overseas. Through that five-peat, though, the blue and white became the undisputed king of recruiting as it got Salva from San Beda, Buenafe and Salamat from San Sebastian College-Recoletos, Tiu and Chua from Xavier and Chiang Kai Shek, respectively, and Baclao, Slaughter, and Sumalinog from the Visayas. Yes, Ravena was there, but many of Black's key cogs were still blue-chip recruits from outside Katipunan. In comparison, Baldwin's championship core, for the most part, are former Blue Eaglets in Ravena (again, Thirdy, that is), Anton Asistio, SJ Belangel, Gian Mamuyac, and the Nieto twins. Even Kouame is, in essence, a homegrown key cog as he was taken in by Ateneo even before college and finished his high school in nearby Multiple Intelligence International School In all, the blueprint may have been different, but the building was the same in the end - a blue and white dynasty. Draw, 10-10 FINAL SCORE: 48-47 for Baldwin's Ateneo.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 14th, 2020

Memorable shots in the Masters from every club in the bag

By DOUG FERGUSON AP Golf Writer Every hole has a tale about the Masters. The playlist of shots is longer than any of the other majors because everyone knows Augusta National so well, players and fans alike. Every club has a story, too. What follows are some of the most memorable shots at the Masters from every club in the bag. DRIVER Byron Nelson drove the seventh green on his way to his first Masters victory in 1937. The impact of that shot had more to do with the golf course than his scorecard. With a suggestion from 1934 champion Horton Smith, the green was moved 20 yards back and to the right on a slope, surrounded by five bunkers, and trees were added down the left side. 3-WOOD Sam Snead and Ben Hogan were tied through 12 holes in an 18-hole playoff for the 1954 Masters when they reached the par-5 13th. Hogan went first and laid up. Snead hit his 3-wood onto the green for a two-putt birdie and a one-shot lead, and Hogan never caught up. 4-WOOD Gene Sarazen called this club his “Dodo,” and he used it for the most famous shot in Masters history in 1935. He holed out from 235 yards on the par-5 15th for an albatross to erase a three-shot deficit, and he beat Craig Wood in a 36-hole playoff the next day. It became known as the “shot heard 'round the world.” 1-IRON Jack Nicklaus was one shot behind in the final round of the 1975 Masters when he hit “one of the finest 1-iron shots I can remember” onto the green at the 15th. He two-putted for birdie and a share of the lead. Tom Weiskopf also birdied the 15th in the group behind Nicklaus to regain the lead, but only briefly. Nicklaus went on to his fifth green jacket. 2-IRON Nick Faldo had the lead for the first time in 1996 as Greg Norman imploded. Faldo was torn between clubs as he stood in the middle of the 13th fairway. Set up over the ball, he backed away and switched to a 2-iron that he hit purely onto the green for a two-shot victory, a key moment. 3-IRON Norman is remembered for his bogey on the final hole that cost him a chance in the 1986 Masters. Forgotten is that he birdied four in a row to tie Nicklaus for the lead, no shot more exquisite than his 3-iron on the 17th. From the adjacent seventh hole, he hit a low bullet under the trees and ran it near the edge of the bunker to 12 feet from the hole. 4-IRON Nicklaus needed help to win the 1986 Masters, and Seve Ballesteros delivered the biggest gift. The great Spaniard had a one-shot lead and was in the 15th fairway, just inside 200 yards, when he pulled his 4-iron into the water short of the green. He made bogey, and then trailed when Nicklaus birdied the 17th. 5-IRON Nicklaus chose 5-iron for the par-3 16th during his Sunday charge to win the 1986 Masters. As the ball was in flight, his son caddying for him said, “Be good.” Nicklaus, stooped to pick up his tee and said, “It is.” The ball nearly went in and left him a 4-foot birdie putt. 6-IRON Arnold Palmer made birdie on the 17th for a three-way tie for the lead in 1960. On the final hole, he hit 6-iron to 6 feet for birdie, becoming the first Masters champion to birdie the last two holes to win by one. 7-IRON Sandy Lyle was tied for the lead with Mark Calcavecchia when he hit into the bunker on the 18th hole. Facing a steep face that made it unlikely he could reach the green, Lyle hit 7-iron over the lip to 10 feet and made birdie to win in 1988. 8-IRON Sergio Garcia was one shot behind in the final round of 2017 when he hammered a drive and hit 8-iron that landed in front of the hole, nicked the pin and settled 15 feet away for eagle that tied him for the lead. He eventually beat Justin Rose in the playoff. 9-IRON Even with back-to-back bogeys to start the back nine, Jordan Spieth still had the lead in 2016 when he hit 9-iron toward the flag on the 12th hole and watched it bound off the slope into the water. He hit the next one in the water, made quadruple bogey and shot 41 on the back nine to lose the Masters to Danny Willett. PITCHING WEDGE If there was one shot that illustrated the power Tiger Woods brought to Augusta National in his pro debut in 1997, it was pitching wedge to the par-5 15th hole in the first round for an eagle. Woods played the par 5s in 13 under for the week and won by 12. GAP WEDGE Bubba Watson was lost in the trees right of the 10th fairway in a playoff with Louis Oosthuizen in 2012. He was 155 yards away and hit a gap wedge that hooked some 40 yards and onto the green, setting up an easy par to win SAND WEDGE Norman had the upper hand on the second playoff hole in 1987, just off the green with Larry Mize well right of the 11th green about 140 feet away, hoping to get it close. He did even better. Mize chipped in for birdie and won. LOB WEDGE Woods had a one-shot lead over Chris DiMarco in 2005 and was in trouble behind the 16th green, his ball nestled against the collar of the rough. With a shot that took its place in Augusta lore, Woods pitched it up the slope and watched it roll down toward the cup, pausing for a full second before taking one final turn and dropped for birdie. PUTTER The best player to never win a major, Phil Mickelson had an 18-foot birdie putt on the final hole in 2004 to beat Ernie Els and win the Masters. The putt swirled around the cup and dropped, and Mickelson leaped into the air......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 12th, 2020

BEST-OF-5 SERIES: The Pingoy Rules Part 5

In case you missed it: BEST-OF-5 SERIES: The Pingoy Rules Part 1 BEST-OF-5 SERIES: The Pingoy Rules Part 2 BEST-OF-5 SERIES: The Pingoy Rules Part 3 BEST-OF-5 SERIES: The Pingoy Rules Part 4 --- Pingoy Rule: Never lose hope. --- For the second time in two years, Jerie Pingoy had to have surgery done on his left foot. In November 2017, he injured his left foot in the final frame of the last game of the elimination round of the UAAP. In December 2017, the 5-foot-11 guard went to Pampanga to rid his left foot of bone spurs. Fast forward to June 2019 and his left foot was yet to be fully healed. A failed surgery as well as playing through pain worsened the bone spurs that had long been building up in Pingoy's left foot and he had no other choice but to go to famed sports doctor Raul Canlas. "Nung pinatingin namin kay Doc Canlas, sabi niya, bakit daw hindi inoperahan yung mismong may bone spurs," he shared in a phone interview. "Ako, wala naman akong kaalam-alam. Eh tapos na yun, wala na akong magagawa. Alangan namang habulin ko pa yung doktor dati." As the now-25-year-old was no longer with Adamson University, he had to pay for the new surgery out of his own pocket. Fortunately, he had his girlfriend not only to help him raise funds, but also to find a way to decrease the amount. "Yung girlfriend ko, nagwo-work sa Maxicare (a health maintenance organization) so yun, nag-apply kami ng health card. Buti naman, na-approve," he said. With that, Pingoy went under the knife for the second time in two years. And, as it turns out, it was an outpatient operation. "Ang kasama ko lang nun, girlfriend ko. Pasok kami Sunday, labas ng Monday kasi wala naman kaming ipon e. Binayad na namin lahat ng meron kami sa opera," he said. The good news is that at long last, his left foot is all well and good. As he put it, "At least, ngayon, okay na okay na." NOT ALONE That’s just one of the reasons why Pingoy believes he already has his life partner beside him. Talking about girlfriend Dixie Soberano, he said, full of love, "Through all the darkness na nangyari sa akin, she stayed with me. Alam niya kung gaano ka-struggle yung nangyari sa akin, pero nag-stay siya." He then continued, "Sobrang nagpapasalamat ako sa kanya kasi nandito siya, 'di niya ako iniwan. Siya pa nga laging nagpapaalala sa aking magpakundisyon ka, magpapayat ka para sa future natin." Not only that, Soberano was also how Pingoy received the biggest blessings in his life. In one-year-and-three-month-old Kaeden Jared and two-month-old Jaeden Keith, the Cebuano has even more will to go on and prove that his career is far from finished. "Sila yung nagbibigay ng inspirasyon sa akin. Ang practice namin sa CEU, alas sais ng umaga, pero gumigising ako ng alas kwatro kasi iniisip ko, para sa anak ko 'to, para sa kinabukasan nila 'to," he said. He leaves home motivated - and comes home even more motivated as he has a brand new dream to go alongside the one of him playing in the PBA. "Every time umuuwi ako, naiisip kong sana soon, yayaman ako at pag-uwi ko, sasabihan ko mga anak kong, 'Magbihis kayo, kakain tayo sa labas,'" he said. He then continued, "Tapos makikita ko kung gaano sila ka-excited. Talagang nagbago na buhay ko dahil sa kanila." NOT THE END Before COVID-19 shut down anything and everything, Pingoy looked like he was doing all in his power to put his career back on track. Just a month after Karate Kid-CEU took a chance on him, he proved diligent and disciplined in his extra work and trimmed down from 250 lbs. to just 197 lbs. Of course, having a life partner and two children, as well as his parents, relying on him is more than enough fuel to the fire. "Mahirap walang income eh. Nung isang taong nawala ako, as in walang income talaga eh kaya ngayon, kailangang magtulungan kami as a family," he said. Fortunately, the Scorpions have Pingoy's back as he claws and climbs the mountain once more. "Everybody deserves a second chance eh. Sakto kailangan ko rin ng point guard na leader para ma-guide yung mga bata namin," head coach Jeff Napa said. And there remains more than a few who have not lost faith. "If Koko can be given a chance and the confidence, he can still realize the potential that he has," Bo Perasol, the head coach who recruited and then mentored him in Ateneo de Manila University, said. In Napa, team manager Johnny Yap, and all of Karate Kid-CEU, Pingoy has another shot - as long as he keeps at it. "Maganda pa rin naman ang future ng batang yan basta mag-work hard lang siya nang todo at bumalik yung game shape niya. Yung talent at basketball sense kasi, meron na siya e," his new mentor said. FORGET-ME-NOT However, it is yet to be determined when the 2020 PBA D-League Aspirants Cup would resume action - or if it would even resume action. With COVID-19 posing more questions than answers, hope is all that Pingoy has for his career that has seen more starts and stops than rush hour traffic in EDSA. Still, hope is what he has been holding to all throughout - and is the reason he still stands even after having seen half of his collegiate career go to waste because of residency. Back-to-back MVP seasons in the UAAP Jrs. were followed by two years in a row of residency. A rookie year in Ateneo was followed by another season on the sidelines after transferring to Adamson. Two years as a Soaring Falcon were followed by a year out of the grid. Now, Jerie Pingoy, once thought to be special, just wants to have a shot at normal. This, even though what he has been through in his young life is already ripe for the pickings for a TV drama. "Sa lahat ng nangyari, parang gusto ko na ngang magpa-MMK e," he kidded. And who, if ever, would portray him on Maalala Mo Kaya? The answer to that is pretty clear in his eyes. "Si Gerald Anderson. Sakto pareho kaming Bisaya, pareho kaming gwapo." Without a doubt, after all that happened to him, the sense of humor is still there with Jerie Pingoy. Hopefully, the game that once made him a promising prospect is still there too. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 12th, 2020

Garcia wins unanimous decision over Vargas at welterweight

FRISCO, Texas (AP) — Eleven months and 40 miles separated from the darkest day of his professional boxing career, Mikey Garcia now feels comfortable with the weight class he considers home. Garcia rebounded from his only pro loss to win a 12-round unanimous decision over Jessie Vargas on Saturday night in a welterweight bout. Garcia (40-1, 30 KOs) took control in the fifth round, when he knocked down Vargas (29-3-2, 11 KOs) with a hard right to the left side of the face. “He definitely lost his power after that,” Garcia said. “I really started to get into a rhythm of things, and I just kept going.” In the seventh, Garcia pummeled Vargas against the ropes in the closing 10 seconds. Judges Catherine Leonard and Steve Morrow scored the bout 116-111 while David Sutherland had it 114-113. Through four rounds, Vargas led 3-1 on two of the three judges’ cards. “I thought I hurt him in the fourth, but I seemed to lighten up,” Vargas said. “Mikey’s a great fighter. His timing was pretty good. I fought my heart out. I thought it was closer than what the judges thought.” Last March in Arlington, Texas, Garcia moved up two weight classes as lightweight champion to challenge Errol Spence Jr. for the IBF 147-pound championship in an attempt to claim a title in his fifth weight class. Spence won a unanimous decision, taking every round. With the win in his second fight at welterweight, Garcia said the weight class is “a good option” and will now aim for a matchup against Manny Pacquiao. “I think it’s very likely that we are considered a likely opponent,” Garcia said. Garcia, from Oxnard, California, has held titles at junior welterweight, lightweight, junior lightweight and featherweight. He has gone the distance in five straight fights and six of his last eight. Vargas is 2-2-2 in his last six fights, his two previous losses coming in unanimous decisions against Timothy Bradley in 2015 and Pacquiao in 2016. The 5-foot-11 Vargas had a three-inch edge in reach (71 inches to 68) over the 5-6 Garcia, who is 30. Vargas, from Las Vegas, is a former welterweight champion and a former super lightweight titleholder. On the undercard at The Ford Center, former four-division world champion Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez of Nicaragua stopped the previously unbeaten Khalid Yafai of England with a ninth-round TKO to claim the WBA super flyweight title. Gonzalez is a long-reigning flyweight and light flyweight champ who briefly held a super flyweight belt before losing back-to-back fights to Thailand’s Srisaket Sor Rungvisai in 2017. Gonzalez (49-2, 41 KOs) knocked down Yafai (26-1, 15 KOs) in the closing seconds of the eighth round. Less than 30 seconds into the ninth, Gonzalez landed a left jab to Yafai’s face and followed with a powerful right to the face that floored Yafai, who was making his sixth title defense, to end the bout. Gonzalez said he dedicated the fight to his children, who were hurt by his recent defeats. “I promised my kids I was going to become a world champion again,” he said. Mexico City’s Julio Cesar Martinez (16-1, 12 KOs) retained his WBC flyweight title in his first defense with a 12-round unanimous decision that handed Wales’ Jay Harris (17-1, 9 KOs) his first professional loss. Martinez bloodied Harris’ nose in the first round, opened a cut over his left eye in the fourth and knocked him to his right knee in the 10th.  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMar 1st, 2020

Harden, Westbrook combine for 72, Rockets beat Jazz 120-110

By MATTHEW COLES Associated Press SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — James Harden scored 38 points and Russell Westbrook had 34 to boost the Houston Rockets to a 120-110 victory over the Utah Jazz on Saturday night. Harden (13 for 23, 6 3-pointers) and Westbrook (14 for 26) were efficient all night and the Rockets rode a big third quarter to their third straight win. Eric Gordon and Ben McLemore each scored 12 off the bench for Houston. Donovan Mitchell scored 31 and Jordan Clarkson had 22 for the Jazz, who cut the Rockets’ lead to seven in the fourth quarter a couple times but could never get closer. The Rockets made the Jazz pay when they occasionally double-teamed Harden and couldn’t rotate fast enough to the perimeter shooters. After a season high-tying 25 3-pointers in their last outing against Golden State, the Rockets made 20 of 48 from beyond the arc. The Rockets made their move in the third quarter when they outscored the Jazz 38-19. Westbrook capped a 14-2 run with a jumper and Houston led 100-85 entering the final period. The Rockets made eight of their first nine 3-point attempts to take an early eight-point lead. Taking advantage of Houston’s lack of rim protection, Clarkson scored 20 points in the first half to help the Jazz recover and move in front. The Jazz played zone defense at times and used some non-traditional defensive matchups like 7-foot-1 Rudy Gobert on 6-3 Westbrook. The Jazz lost to the San Antonio Spurs on Friday night and could hardly afford another slip-up on the second half of their back-to-back as they jockey with the Rockets for playoff position in the last third of the season. Houston and Utah now both have records of 36-20 but the Rockets claimed the season series, 2-1. TIP-INS Rockets: Gordon, who scored 50 against Utah on Jan. 27, returned from a three-game absence with a leg bruise. … The Rockets' 20 3-pointers gave them a 60-21 edge on shots from long range. ... Westbrook demonstratively demanded a replay on a foul by Bojan Bogdanovic early in the fourth quarter. After review, the elbow nudge was determined to be a common foul. Jazz: Rookie forward Juwan Morgan, who had never played more than seven minutes in a game, played 13 minutes against the small-ball Rockets and had career highs of four points and five rebounds. … Utah outscored Houston 64-36 in the paint. … Mike Conley had 13 points, seven rebounds and seven assists after sitting out for rest against the Spurs. UP NEXT Rockets: Host New York on Monday night. Jazz: Host Phoenix on Monday night......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 23rd, 2020

Tatum and Brown lead Celtics to 113-101 win over Bulls

By Ken Powtak, Associated Press BOSTON (AP) — Jayson Tatum scored 21 points, Jaylen Brown 19 and the Boston Celtics coasted to a 113-101 victory over the Chicago Bulls Monday night (Tuesday, PHL time). Enes Kanter had 15 points and nine rebounds, Kemba Walker added 14 points and Marcus Smart had 12 points for Boston, which won its second straight after a season-high three-game losing streak. Zach LaVine led the Bulls with 30 points, including a couple of highlight dunks. Thaddeus Young added 17 points for Chicago, which has lost seven of eight. The Bulls trailed by 55-37 at halftime, but came out with a 17-5 run over the initial 4 minutes of the second half. Lavine had six points in the spree. Chicago cut its large deficit at intermission to six points twice in the third, the last 67-61 on Kris Dunn’s 3-pointer from directly in front of Boston’s bench, but the Celtics closed the quarter with an 8-2 spurt to take an 83-71 edge into the fourth. The Bulls never really threatened in the final quarter. They closed it to 95-84 with just under 6 minutes to play on Daniel Gafford’s put-back basket, but never tested Boston the rest of the way. TIP-INS Bulls: C Gafford returned to the lineup after missing the last four games with a sprained left ankle. … C Wendell Carter Jr. missed his fourth straight with a sprained right ankle. Celtics: C Daniel Theis missed the game with right knee soreness. … G Marcus Smart went to the floor early in the second quarter after banging his left knee into Ryan Arcidiacono’s right knee. Smart got up slowly after a short delay, but stayed in the game. He also was limping later in the quarter. TOTAL CONTROL The Celtics only trailed once in the game — 6-4 in the opening quarter — and that was just for 22 seconds. They opened their first double-digit lead (21-9) on Walker’s 3 pointer and shot 52.5 % in the opening quarter (21 of 40) en route to a 28-14 lead at the break. UP NEXT Bulls: Host the Wizards on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time). Beat Washington on the road in the clubs’ first game, 110-109, in overtime on Dec. 18. Celtics: Host the Pistons Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time) in the teams’ second meeting of the season. Boston won the first, 114-93, at home on Dec. 20 (Dec. 21, PHL time)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 14th, 2020

San Francisco roars back into playoffs as NFC s top seed

By Arnie Stapleton, Associated Press For the first time since 1997, the San Francisco 49ers are the top seed in the NFC playoffs, a stunning turnaround for a team that owned the second overall pick in the NFL draft just nine months ago. After four straight losing campaigns, including only 10 wins in coach Kyle Shanahan's first two seasons, the 49ers went from 4-12 to 13-3 this season. They emerged as the top team in the NFC thanks a big-play offense and a vastly improved defense sparked by Nick Bosa, whom they chose with that No. 2 draft pick. They earned the top seed with a thrilling finale at Seattle when rookie linebacker Dre Greenlaw made a stop inches from the goal line, earning his team a week off and up to two home games in the 49ers' quest to reach the Super Bowl for the first time in seven years. "It feels good to get where we're at," Shanahan said. "Our goal was to get in the playoffs, it feels much better with being the one seed. By now everyone knows there is only one team that is happy at the end of year." The Green Bay Packers secured the other first-round bye. The Seahawks visit the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday and the Minnesota Vikings visit the New Orleans Saints in the other NFC wild-card game. 1. SAN FRANCISCO 49ers (13-3). AP Pro32 Ranking: No. 3. Last Lombardi: Super Bowl 29, 49-26 over San Diego Chargers on Jan. 29, 1995. Last year: 4-12. First trip to NFC playoffs since 2013. YEA: The 49ers have won different ways with the defense dominating early and the offense playing better late. The returns of edge rusher Dee Ford and S Jaquiski Tartt should help the defense return to its early season form. If QB Jimmy Garoppolo and the offense can maintain its play from the second half when the team ranked second in plays of at least 20 yards, the Niners should be tough to beat. NAY: The Niners will still be missing at least one key defensive piece at the start of the playoffs in LB Kwon Alexander and several depth pass rushers also are out for the year. That could limit the improvement on defense and there is little playoff experience on offense with WR Emmanuel Sanders the only key skill position player who has been in the postseason. Garoppolo has improved the past few weeks but still has a propensity for turnovers, which could prove costly. SAY: "We knew going into the year we had a chance to be pretty good with what we had on paper and watching the guys throughout training camp. We knew that pretty well after the first five games, we could feel it. Then you go through a number of injuries and stuff and you never know how you're going to be able to fully handle that. That's what I have been impressed the most with the guys, no one has wavered." — Shanahan. 2. GREEN BAY PACKERS (13-3). AP Pro32 Ranking: No. 5. Last Lombardi: Super Bowl 45, 31-25 over Pittsburgh Steelers on Feb. 6, 2011. Last year: 6-9-1. First trip to NFC playoffs since 2016. YEA: RB Aaron Jones is the team MVP. The third-year pro is Green Bay's first 1,000-yard rusher since Eddie Lacy in 2014 and his 19 total touchdowns (16 rushing, three receiving) tied Carolina's Christian McCaffrey for the league high. In the Packers' three losses this season, Jones averaged fewer than 42 scrimmage yards. If first-year coach Matt LaFleur gets Jones the ball early and often and QB Aaron Rodgers can add in a splash of his old magic, Green Bay could find itself in Miami in February. NAY: Though Rodgers has had flashes of his old greatness, the 36-year-old two-time MVP has played far below his soaring standards. Rodgers had a passer rating of less than 80.0 in each of his last three starts and had a career-high 16 overthrows against Detroit in the regular-season finale. If the Packers are going to win another Super Bowl, they're going to need the Rodgers of old, not the old Rodgers. SAY: "We haven't always made it easy and we haven't always made it pretty, but for the most part, we've found a way to win every game. You have to say a lot about the resiliency of this team, because we've gotten ourselves into a lot of different scenarios, but we always believe we can go out there and put up a bunch of points in a hurry." -- WR Davante Adams 3. NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (13-3). AP Pro32 Ranking: No. 2. Last Lombardi: Super Bowl 44, beat Indianapolis 31-17 on Feb. 7, 2010. Last year: No. 1 seed, beat Philadelphia Eagles 20-14 at home in divisional round, lost to Los Angeles Rams 26-23 (OT) in NFC championship at home. Third consecutive trip to NFC playoffs. YEA: QB Drew Brees, who'll turn 41 on Jan. 15, has been in vintage form lately with a big assist from the NFL's top WR Michael Thomas. Brees has passed for 1,188 yards and 15 TDs in the past four games, evidence of his strong comeback from a thumb surgery that sidelined him five games. Thomas racked up a single-season record 149 catches for 1,725 yards and nine TDs. The Saints' eight turnovers are an NFL record low for a season. New Orleans had 51 sacks, third most in the NFL and ranked fourth against the run. NAY: While the Saints don't have many weaknesses, they can be their own worst enemy. Their 120 penalties for 1,036 yards ranked sixth worst in the NFL in both categories and their minus-323 net penalty yards ranked second worst. New Orleans' secondary has been beset with late-season injuries. Both starting safeties and a starting cornerback did not play in Week 17. SAY: "Down the stretch here I think we've been an ascending team. We've been playing a little bit better each and every week, despite the fact that we have had some guys go down." — Brees 4. PHILADELPHIA EAGLES (9-7). AP Pro32 Ranking: No. 11. Last Lombardi: Super Bowl 52, 41-33 over New England Patriots, Feb. 4, 2018. Last year: No. 6 seed, beat Chicago Bears 16-15 in wild-card game on road, lost to New Orleans Saints 20-14 in divisional round on road. Third consecutive trip to NFC playoffs. YEA: The Eagles are hungry and Carson Wentz is determined to do what Nick Foles did in his absence two years ago — win a Super Bowl. If Wentz continues playing at the MVP level he displayed in December, the Eagles are dangerous. They have a strong rushing attack that can control the clock and an experienced defense that shuts down the run and forces teams to be one-dimensional. NAY: Seattle beat the Eagles in Philadelphia 17-9 on Nov. 24. Russell Wilson is 4-0 against Philly. The Eagles have been riddled by injuries and finished the regular season without seven starters on offense. Three of those players could return to face the Seahawks but it's likely two will be game-time decisions. SAY: "In the last couple games, (Wentz) has really put this team on his back and said, 'Hey, follow me.' And I think that's a sign of growth, a sign of maturity. I spent eight years in Green Bay with Brett Favre, and that's what Brett did. Brett just put the team on his back when the chips were against us and just said, 'Follow me.' And that's what Carson can do." — Coach Doug Pederson. 5. SEATTLE SEAHAWKS (11-5). AP Pro32 Ranking: No. 6. Last Lombardi: Super Bowl 48, 43-8 over Denver Broncos on Feb. 2, 2014. Last year: No. 5 seed, lost to Dallas Cowboys 24-22 in wild-card game on road. Second consecutive trip to NFC playoffs. YEA: Unlike years past, if the Seahawks are going to make a deep playoff run, it's going to be because of QB Russell Wilson. He's coming off the second-best season in terms of passing yards, completion percentage and a career-low five interceptions. Wilson's never been asked to carry Seattle in the playoffs but if he can rediscover the success from when he was in the MVP conversation with Lamar Jackson, Seattle has enough other parts to make some noise. NAY: Injuries have stacked up for Seattle. The Seahawks lost their top three running backs, a starting edge rusher, tight end and center to season-ending injuries. Jadeveon Clowney is playing through a painful core muscle injury. Bobby Wagner has a bad ankle as does safety Quandre Diggs. Left tackle Duane Brown underwent knee surgery after Week 16. Eventually the lack of some key stars is likely to catch up with Seattle. SAY: "We have everything we want in the locker room. We have everything that we could need. We have everything that it takes. So it's been a tremendous season. It's been a battle so far. It's been a long one, but it's been a great one so far. The good thing is it's a refresh button, you get to hit the refresh button, start over, 0-0, see how far we can go." — Wilson. 6. MINNESOTA VIKINGS (10-6). AP Pro32 Ranking: No. 8. No Lombardis. Last year: 8-7-1. First trip to NFC playoffs since 2017. YEA: The Vikings have an experienced, accomplished defense that can pose problems for elite QBs and clever play-callers on the other side. The Vikings were sixth in the NFL with an average of 18.9 points allowed and fourth with 31 takeaways. Their play-action passing attack with Pro Bowl RB Dalvin Cook poses a dual threat and QB Kirk Cousins throwing deep to WR Stefon Diggs, can be awfully dangerous, too. NAY: The downside on defense is the erosion of the pass coverage. After ranking in the top three in passing yards allowed in the league in each of the past three years, the Vikings dropped to 15th in 2019. They also fell to 19th in the NFL in third down conversions allowed after leading the league in 2017 and 18. The offense carries its own reasons to doubt a playoff run, with Cousins never having won a postseason game in the NFL and a recent dud at home against division rival Green Bay. SAY: "I know it's been done before. Why not us?" — coach Mike Zimmer on the prospect of winning three road games to reach the Super Bowl. ___ AP Pro Football Writers Josh Dubow, Rob Maaddi and Dave Campbell and AP Sports Writers Tim Booth, Brett Martel and Keith Jenkins contributed to this report......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 2nd, 2020

Lowry scores 24 points, Raptors beat Cavaliers 117-97

TORONTO (AP) - Kyle Lowry kept injury-ravaged Toronto rolling along by finishing off 2019 with another 20-point performance. Lowry scored 24 points, Terence Davis matched his career high with 19 and the Raptors beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 117-97 on Tuesday night. Serge Ibaka had 20 points and 10 rebounds and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson scored 14 points in his first start with Toronto as the Raptors recorded their fifth straight home win over the Cavaliers. Toronto won for the fourth time in seven games since losing starters Pascal Siakam (groin), Marc Gasol (left hamstring) and Norman Powell (left shoulder) to injury. Lowry, who did not speak to reporters, has scored 20 or more in eight of his past nine games. He had 14 in a Christmas Day loss to Boston. "Kyle Lowry is a Hall of Famer," Cleveland's Tristan Thompson said. "He's a five-time All-Star, Olympic gold medalist, an NBA champ. He's their backbone. "He keeps this ship running and he's playing at a high level. Kyle's a bulldog, he's going to compete every night. That's why his teammates always love him." Collin Sexton scored 22 points and Thompson had 14 points and 11 rebounds for the Cavaliers, who had won four of five. Kevin Love returned to the starting lineup with 10 points and 11 rebounds and Cedi Osman scored 14 points for Cleveland. Cleveland coach John Beilein said Lowry and Fred VanVleet deserved most of the credit for Toronto's latest triumph. "In today's game, two guards like that, despite their size, can dominate," Beilein said. "They really dominated the game today." The Raptors are 13-1 when they lead through three quarters at home. Toronto lost 98-97 to Oklahoma City on Sunday despite taking an 80-76 lead into the fourth. Sexton said the Raptors seemed intent on wiping away the memories of Sunday's defeat. "They had a chip on their shoulder," Sexton said. "They wanted to pretty much just beat us. You could tell from the very start of the game that they had a different type of energy." OG Anunoby and VanVleet each scored 12 points in the Raptors' second 20-point win over Cleveland this season. The Cavaliers lost 133-113 at Toronto on Dec. 16. Toronto had lost three of four, but won for the 14th time in 19 home games. The Raptors went 9-7 in December, their busiest month of the season. Hollis-Jefferson started in place of Anunoby, who shot 0 for 7 from 3-point range in Sunday's loss to Oklahoma City and had missed 17 of 19 from distance over his previous five games. "Seemed like it worked out OK, they both played really well tonight," Raptors coach Nick Nurse said. "I liked the energy from both of them." The Raptors recorded an assist on nine of their 10 baskets in the opening quarter. Lowry fed Anunoby for a 3-pointer with 1.8 seconds left to give Toronto a 27-25 lead after one. The lead changed 10 times in the opening quarter, but didn't change again the rest of the way. Lowry scored 11 points in the second and Toronto used six 3-pointers to outscore Cleveland 32-18, scoring the final seven points of the quarter to take a 59-43 lead at halftime. "We just buried ourselves at the end of that first half," Beilein said. Cleveland shot 2 for 12 from 3-point range in the second. Toronto led 86-69 through three quarters. TIP-INS Cavaliers: Love sat out Saturday's win at Minnesota because of a sore right hip. . The Cavs shot 10 for 38 from 3-point range. . Cleveland is 4-13 on the road. . The Cavs were 5-9 in December after going 3-12 in November. Raptors: Before the game, Nurse said his injured starters are still "a ways away" from returning. All three were injured in a Dec. 18 win at Detroit. . F Patrick McCaw left early in the first quarter after injuring his left leg but returned in the second. . Toronto held a 15-2 edge in bench scoring at halftime. WINNING MONTHS Toronto has posted a winning record in 20 consecutive calendar months, the longest streak in franchise history and the longest active streak in the NBA. The Raptors last had a losing record in a single month when they went 8-9 in January 2017. DOUBLE YOUR PLEASURE Toronto led by double digits for the entire second half. DECEMBER DOUBLES All seven of Ibaka's double-doubles this season came in December. UP NEXT Cavaliers: Host Charlotte on Thursday night. Raptors: Visit Miami on Thursday night......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 1st, 2020

Kawhi Leonard, Clippers rally to beat Lakers 111-106

By Dan Greenspan, Associated Press LOS ANGELES (AP) — Kawhi Leonard scored 11 of his 35 points in the fourth quarter and had 12 rebounds to help the Los Angeles Clippers beat the Los Angeles Lakers 111-106 on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time)in the NBA’s marquee Christmas game. Montrezl Harrell had 18 points off the bench, Paul George added 17 and the Clippers improved to 2-0 against the Lakers this season. Kyle Kuzma led Los Angeles with 25 points. LeBron James had 23 points, 10 assists and nine rebounds, and Anthony Davis had 24 points. The Lakers have lost four straight games. Los Angeles had a chance to tie in the final seconds, but video review showed James touched the ball last after Patrick Beverly knocked it away as James went up for a 3. George hit two free throws for the final margin. Lou Williams made two free throws — after a questionable foul call against Davis for tapping the swingman after his transition layup rimmed out — to give the Clippers a 105-103 lead with 3:29 Leonard, who had a 3 to cap a 7-0 run and tie it at 101 with 5:14 remaining, then made four late free throws. TIP-INS Clippers: Williams had six points and seven rebounds. ... The Clippers had a 50-42 edge in rebounds. Lakers: The Lakers bench outscored the Clippers' backups 49-36. … James played in 14th Christmas Day game, second in NBA history to Kobe Bryant at 16. UP NEXT Clippers: Host Utah on Saturday night (Sunday, PHL time). Lakers: At Portland on Saturday night (Sunday, PHL time)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 26th, 2019

Liverpool lands 1st world title, Qatar passes pre-2022 test

By Rob Harris, Associated Press DOHA, Qatar (AP) — After tens of billions of dollars spent on infrastructure, and skepticism over this tiny gas-rich nation's suitability as a sporting host, a World Cup has finally been handed out in Qatar. It was Liverpool lifting FIFA's lesser-regarded Club World Cup trophy on Saturday night. In three years, the biggest prize in soccer will be handed out in a stadium yet to be completed. The Club World Cup, which ended Saturday with Roberto Firmino sealing Liverpool's 1-0 victory over Flamengo in extra time, has been the first major international footballing test of Qatar's readiness. With a 45,000-strong crowd packed into Khalifa Stadium, Qatar has shown it can fill a venue with sports fans —- unlike at the track and field world championships earlier this year. “Everybody was for different reasons on the edge pretty much but I saw so many sensationally good performances and I'm really happy of course for our supporters,” Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp said. “The atmosphere in the stadium was great." But it is a stadium touched by the welfare concerns that have dogged Qatar's building work since being awarded the main 32-team World Cup in 2010 by FIFA. A British worker plunged to his death during the construction phase in conditions later deemed to be dangerous. This was a Club World Cup trip also tinged in tragedy for the losing finalists from Brazil. When fire engulfed a dormitory at Flamengo's academy in Brazil in February, 10 players — all between 14 and 16 years old — died. “It was a very sad moment in Flamengo's history and, I believe, in Brazilian football as well," midfielder Everton Ribeiro said in Doha. “Lives were lost, dreams were lost.” Flamengo was ordered by a Rio de Janeiro judge earlier this month to pay the equivalent of $2,500 a month to the families of 10 victims and three injured players. Flamengo, which appealed the decision, is already paying families about $1,200 a month. “If the situation is settled with the families, as soon as possible, including the support that Flamengo is already giving, it will be better for everybody,” Ribeiro said. Flamengo's grief was followed by success not achieved by a Brazilian side since Pele's Santos in 1963. The Brazilian championship was won in November, 24 hours after clinching a first Copa Libertadores title since 1981 in a continental triumph which earned a reunion with Liverpool. When the European champions and South American champions met in a single-game version of the Club World Cup 38 years ago, Flamengo beat Liverpool 3-0. Since the 1981 Intercontinental Cup, football has tilted in Europe's favor over South America but the very staging of this seven-team Club World Cup in the Persian Gulf shows where so much of the wealth now comes from in the sport. And it was a Brazilian player prized away from his homeland to Europe as a 19-year-old, initially by Hoffenheim in Germany, who settled this final for Liverpool in the 99th minute. Firmino was still inside his own half when captain Jordan Henderson launched the defense-splitting pass that set Liverpool on the path to glory. As Firmino raced through Flamengo territory unchallenged, Sadio Mane held up the ball received from Henderson. When Firmino reached the penalty area, Mane squared to the Brazilian, who took three touches to control the ball past defender Rodrigo Caio before knocking it into the net. Firmino also struck in the semifinal victory over Monterrey on Wednesday, giving him two goals in as many games in the Khalifa Stadium, having only netted once in the previous 16 games for Liverpool in all competitions. “I couldn't be more happy for him that he could score that goal because ... (of) what this competition means to Brazil, to South American people,” Klopp said. After netting the World Cup winner, Firmino raced away in celebration, ripping off his jersey and leaping into the air. Firmino and his teammates will have to wait some time to attach FIFA's gold Champions Badge to their jerseys. Liverpool anticipates it will only be allowed to be worn in the Champions League, which resumes in February, rather than weekly in the Premier League. It may have to settle with lifting the Premier League trophy in May for the first time. As Liverpool added the world title to its sixth European Cup collected in June, back in England its pursuit of the Premier League was helped by Leicester losing to Manchester City. A domestic title drought stretching back to 1990 for the 18-time English champions is well-placed to end with Liverpool holding a 10-point lead over Leicester ahead of Thursday’s game against its second-place rival. “Liverpool are enjoying their best time in their decade,” Flamengo coach Jorge Jesus said. "They played a tremendous match and Flamengo were excellent also. "We were a match for Liverpool. I'm fully pleased with what Flamengo have done. Brazilian clubs in future will be contenders to European clubs and we have exhibited that today.”.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 22nd, 2019

Mbappe scores 2 as PSG moves 7 points clear; Depay injured

By Jerome Pugmire, Associated Press PARIS (AP) — Kylian Mbappe scored twice as Paris Saint-Germain moved seven points clear at the top of the French league with a resounding 4-0 win at 10-man Saint-Etienne on Sunday. Midfielder Leandro Paredes scored his first PSG goal before Mbappe's brace took his club career tally to a whopping 102 a few days before his 21st birthday. An eventful game saw Neymar hold his head in his hands after a rare penalty miss, and the ultra-efficient Mauro Icardi scored yet another clinical goal. In Lyon, star striker Memphis Depay and midfielder Jeff Reine-Adelaide were coming to terms with serious knee injuries that could keep them out for the rest of the season. Both players ruptured knee ligament during a 1-0 home defeat to fourth-place Rennes. Saint-Etienne played 65 minutes with 10 men after midfielder Jean-Eudes Aholou’s sending off. It proved an easy win for Thomas Tuchel's side, which has played one game less than second-place Marseille approaching the midseason winter break next weekend. As Mbappe ran through and smacked the ball into the bottom left corner in the 90th, Saint-Etienne fans were in raucous party mode. Flares were lit and fireworks let off. The referee blew full time straight from the restart, choosing not to play any additional time. He had interrupted the game for about a minute early in the second half to let smoke from flares dissipate. A fan group at Saint-Etienne was celebrating its 20th anniversary and notified the club, referee and stewards know beforehand with the game passing off peacefully. Paredes netted with a volley from the edge of the penalty area in the 10th, with Saint-Etienne goalkeeper Stephane Ruffier beaten by a deflection off a defender. Saint-Etienne’s chances were severely reduced when Aholou was sent off in the 25th for a crude two-footed lunge on Paredes. After Mbappe had a goal correctly ruled out for offside, Ruffier twice made fine saves from Neymar. Mbappe read Neymar’s first-time pass well and fired the ball under Ruffier's body in the 44th. Ruffier denied Neymar twice with his legs and PSG winger Angel Di Maria hit the post — within 10 minutes of the second half. After Neymar was tripped by Mathieu Debuchy, he sent Ruffier the wrong way from the spot but the ball hit the right post in the 62nd. The ice-cool Icardi confirmed his status as PSG’s new arch-poacher in the place of Edinson Cavani, adroitly clipping home a half-volley at the back post from left back Layvin Kurzawa’s cross in the 74th. RISING STAR, INJURED STAR Eduardo Camavinga scored an accomplished late goal as Rennes won 1-0 at Lyon to move up to fourth place. The injuries to Depay and Reine-Adelaide overshadowed 17-year-old Camavinga's latest stellar performance. He shot to prominence with an outstanding performance against PSG in August. Then age 16, he set up a goal and demonstrated a staggering range of passing as he pulled the midfield strings in a 2-1 win. Now he is celebrating his first league goal, and the way he took it will only have served to remind Europe's leading clubs what a precocious talent Rennes has in its team. The goal came in the 89th minute after he collected a pass wide on the left. Camavinga advanced confidently at pace toward goal, with his head up. Drawing center half Joachim Andersen out of the penalty area, Camavinga cut past him with a sudden change of direction, then held off two other defenders before slotting the ball past goalkeeper Anthony Lopes and in off the left post. Rennes is one point behind third-place Lille, having played one game less. Lyon slipped down to eighth spot after a second straight home defeat. Also Sunday, seventh-place Bordeaux lost 1-0 against Strasbourg, with striker Ludovic Ajorque netting for the visitors in the 11th minute. It was Ajorque's sixth goal of the season and moved the Alsace-based side up to 13th place......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 16th, 2019

Tiger Woods and US team rally to win Presidents Cup again

By Doug Ferguson, Associated Press MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — High emotions, fierce hugs from Tiger Woods, this time as a winner both ways in the Presidents Cup. Woods capped off a big year that began with his 15th major at the Masters by playing and leading his U.S. team to another victory in the Presidents Cup on Sunday at Royal Melbourne. The first playing captain in 25 years, he opened the 12 singles matches by beating Abraham Ancer to set the Presidents Cup record with his 27th match victory, and set the tone for the rest of his team. The scoreboard was filled with American red scores all day as they rallied from a two-point deficit to win the Presidents Cup for the eighth straight time against an International team that faltered at the worst time. Matt Kuchar delivered the clinching putt, a 5-footer for birdie that assured him a halve against Louis Oosthuizen and gave the Americans the 15 1/2 points they needed to win. “For us to be in a hole, to come back and win this thing ... to win it as a team, but to do it with Tiger Woods as our captain was just a huge thrill,” Kuchar said. They result was 16-14, and at least this one was a contest. The U.S. victory two years ago at Liberty National was so resounding that it nearly ended on Saturday. International captain Ernie Els was determined to turn it around. He created a new logo for the International team. He relied heavily on analytics. It still wasn't enough. “I followed a plan, and it didn't quite work out, but we came damn close,” Els said. “If you compare our team on paper with other teams in other sport, you would have laughed us out of the building. But we gave it a hell of a go and we came mightily close to winning and upsetting one of the greatest golf teams of all time.” Els thought back to Friday, when the Americans won two matches with birdies on the 18th hole and rallied to halve another to keep the International lead from growing. On Sunday, all he saw was U.S. momentum that couldn't be stopped. “We gave you everything we had," Els said to Woods at the closing ceremony. “You were the better team.” Woods hugged everyone hard, players and vice captains alike, wearing a smile not seen since he walked off the 18th green at Augusta National after becoming a Masters champion again after injuries that nearly ended his career. “We relied on one another as a team, and we did it — together,” Woods said, his voice choked slightly with emotion. “This cup wasn't going to be given to us. We had to go earn it. And we did.” Els fashioned the youngest International team from a record nine countries from everywhere outside Europe and took a 10-8 lead into the final day, the first time it had the edge in 16 years. It wasn't enough. Patrick Reed, whose caddie was benched for shoving a fan who had cursed Reed from close range Saturday, built a 6-up lead through seven holes before eventually putting away C.T. Pan to win for the first time this week. Webb Simpson, who played with Reed as they lost all three team matches, never trailed in beating Byeong Hun An. Everyone on the U.S. team contributed something. With so much red on the board, Tony Finau might have been his team the biggest boost. He was 4 down through 10 holes against Hideki Matsuyama, won the next four holes and earned a half-point. It came down to the final hole in South Korea four years ago. This time, the Americans were assured of a tie if the Internationals were to win the last three matches, creating at least a little drama. But it was a familiar ending. The Americans now are 11-1-1 in an event that began in 1994. “It's hard to digest,” said Adam Scott, who has played in nine Presidents Cup without ever winning. “It's incredibly disappointing but ... I like where this team is going, and I'll be working really hard now to be on the team in two more years.” The only International victory was in 1998 at Royal Melbourne, and several players from that team came to Australia this week to conjure up good vibes. It only worked for so long. The Americans won the singles session for the first time since 2009. Most years, their lead was so big it wasn't critical. This time it was. They hadn't trailed since 2003 in South Africa, the year of the tie. So inspired was the American play that none of their six singles victories made it to the 18th hole. The last two matches were halved, and the 8-4 advantage in singles matched the record for the largest Sunday margin since the Americans won 8-4 in the inaugural Presidents Cup in 1994. The next Presidents Cup is in 2021 at Quail Hollow Club in North Carolina. In the meantime, the Americans will try to get on another team and win back the Ryder Cup, which gives them far more trouble......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 15th, 2019

Rose caps big 4th with winning jumper, Pistons edge Pelicans

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Derrick Rose hit a 14-foot jumper in the lane with 0.3 seconds left and scored 17 of his 21 points in the fourth quarter to lift the Detroit Pistons over the skidding New Orleans Pelicans 105-103 Monday night. With the game tied, Detroit worked an isolation play for Rose, who dribbled the ball out top against Jrue Holiday. Rose drove into the lane, spun to the right and hit the jumper over Holiday's outstretched arms. New Orleans inbounded the ball from halfcourt toward Jaxson Hayes, but the rookie center could not get the tying tip-in and the Pelicans lost their ninth straight game. Rose scored 11 of the Pistons’ first 13 points in the fourth quarter to put Detroit on top 92-84, but New Orleans whittled the deficit to 96-95 on a turnaround baseline jumper by Brandon Ingram with 4:49 left. Ingram's 18-foot turnaround gave New Orleans a 103-101 lead with 1:11 to go, but Rose hit a spinning layup to tie it at 103 with 38.7 seconds remaining. Ingram missed a tough-angle jumper from the left baseline, and Detroit called a timeout with 14.7 seconds to play. Ingram finished with a game-high 31 points, and Holiday had 20. Detroit had three players in double figures besides Rose: Langston Galloway (16 points), Luke Kennard (14) and Andre Drummond (13). Drummond also grabbed 10 rebounds. The Pelicans missed their first 10 3-point attempts in the third quarter and Detroit erased a six-point deficit to take a 67-61 lead. The Pistons finished off a 34-21 period with a 7-1 run for an 81-74 advantage. New Orleans held the Pistons to 33% shooting in the first half to take a 53-47 lead. It was the fewest points scored in the first half by a Pelicans opponent this season. Ingram did most of the damage for New Orleans, scoring 17 points on 5-of-9 shooting and making all five foul shots. The Pelicans could have had a bigger lead but were hurt by 22% shooting from 3-point range, including 1 of 5 by sharpshooter JJ Redick. Hayes came off the bench to score 10 first-half points and energized the small New Orleans crowd with a tomahawk dunk over Drummond in the first quarter. Pistons star Blake Griffin scored just three points in the first half, missing six of seven shots. TIP-INS Pistons: Improved to 3-9 on the road. … Detroit has won four of five for the first time this season. Pelicans: The team’s marketing slogan this season has been “Won’t Bow Down,” reinforced every game before tipoff by an employee banging a drum at midcourt. In the wake of a 46-point road loss to Dallas on Saturday, the drumbeat was shelved, at least temporarily. ... Derrick Favors, who has missed the last seven games since the unexpected death of his mother, has returned to the team but did not play against Detroit. UP NEXT Pistons: Play the Dallas Mavericks in Mexico City on Thursday night. Pelicans: Play at Milwaukee on Wednesday night. The Eastern Conference-leading Bucks have won 15 in a row......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 10th, 2019

Gladbach beats Bayern 2-1 to stay top of Bundesliga

By James Ellingworth, Associated Press MÖNCHENGLADBACH, Germany (AP) — Surprise Bundesliga leader Borussia Mönchengladbach showed it's a serious title contender by beating Bayern Munich 2-1 on Saturday with a last-gasp penalty. Left-back Ramy Bensebaini scored both goals for Gladbach, which last won the title in 1977. Bensebaini headed in a corner to draw Gladbach level after Ivan Perisic's volley for Bayern, and then scored the decisive penalty in added time. “That shows why we’re rightly up there," Gladbach coach Marco Rose said. "We tried until the 90th minute to show what's made us stand out in the last few weeks and months, and we got the penalty.” After scoring the opener, it was as if “we forgot how to play football somehow," said Bayern's interim coach Hansi Flick. The seven-time defending champion is now down in seventh after losing back-to-back Bundesliga games for the first time in 14 months. Gladbach leads the league by a point ahead of Leipzig, which beat Hoffenheim 3-1 thanks to two goals from Timo Werner. Jadon Sancho scored twice as Dortmund thrashed Fortuna Düsseldorf 5-0. BAYERN BEATEN AGAIN Another week, another 2-1 defeat and yet more missed opportunities for Bayern. Just as in last week's loss to Bayer Leverkusen by the same score, Bayern had a string of great chances — 15 shots in the first half alone — but a mix of poor finishes and good goalkeeping denied the Munich team. Gladbach keeper Yann Sommer trapped an effort by Joshua Kimmich on the line, and Robert Lewandowski twice flashed shots just wide of the post. After that frustration, Bayern scored with its first shot of the second half, a sweetly hit volley by substitute Ivan Perisic into the top-left corner from the edge of the box. That sparked Gladbach into life. The hosts have been strong at set pieces this season and showed it again when Bensebaini lost his marker to head in the corner in the 60th. Bayern pushed up to chase the win in stoppage time and was caught out by a Gladbach counter. Martinez launched into a desperate slide to stop Marcus Thuram reaching a loose ball and brought him down, giving away a penalty and earning a red card. Bayern's interim coach Hansi Flick started the day with a chance to go within a point of Gladbach, but now finds himself seven points adrift of the top. “The results don’t match" the chances Bayern created, Flick said. Bayern substituted Corentin Tolisso and Jerome Boateng with suspected injuries, which could complicate selection ahead of Wednesday's game against Tottenham in the Champions League. WERNER LEADS LEIPZIG If Leipzig manages to win the Bundesliga title for the first time in its short history, it will be largely thanks to Timo Werner. He's scored 15 goals in 14 league games this season and has nine in his last five Bundesliga matches. Hoffenheim could do nothing to stop Werner giving Leipzig the lead on a counterattack in the 11th minute. Hoffenheim tried fouling Werner, but that just led to the 52nd-minute penalty from which he scored his second goal. Marcel Sabitzer added a third late on. SANCHO'S SCORING RUN Dortmund continued its recovery from a 4-0 loss to Bayern last month, beating Düsseldorf with two goals each from Marco Reus and Sancho. Reus gave Dortmund the lead with a calm finish in the 42nd minute. Thorgan Hazard and Sancho added the second and third goals, before Reus and Sancho each scored again late on. Sancho has now scored in his last four games in the Bundesliga and the Champions League. That makes it three games unbeaten for Dortmund in the Bundesliga since the loss to Bayern, and puts the team third and firmly back into the fight for Champions League places. Freiburg continued its unexpected chase for a Champions League spot, rising to fifth with a 1-0 win over Wolfsburg thanks to Jonathan Schmid's 85th-minute goal. Leverkusen followed up its win over Bayern last week by overtaking the Munich team for sixth place with a 2-1 win over Schalke, which drops to fourth. Lucas Alario scored both of Leverkusen's goals in the win. Augsburg beat Mainz 2-1 to halt Mainz's winning start under new coach Achim Beierlorzer, who had overseen victories in his first two games......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 8th, 2019

Mourinho loses in Old Trafford return; Liverpool wins derby

By Steve Douglas, Associated Press Jose Mourinho was standing on the edge of his technical area near the halfway line when Manchester United midfielder Daniel James came sliding off the field and clattered head-first into the right knee of the Portuguese coach. Mourinho just about stayed on his feet but grimaced as he clutched his knee before hobbling away. It was a rough return to Old Trafford for the former United manager on Wednesday. Two weeks into his time at Tottenham and Mourinho has finally lost a game — and it just had to be against the club that fired him a year ago. United won 2-1 to end Tottenham’s run of three wins since the arrival of Mourinho, with Marcus Rashford scoring both of the home team’s goals and celebrating them maybe with a little dig at his old manager. “Doubters just spur me on,” Rashford wrote on Twitter after the match, potentially a reference to Mourinho who, in one standout incident during his time at United, turned his back to Rashford and folded his arms in disgust after the striker missed an easy chance in a Champions League match against Young Boys in November last year. Less than a month later, Mourinho was fired. Tottenham, which slipped to eighth place and behind United in the standings, has now conceded two goals in each of the four games Mourinho has been in charge — a statistic that must concern a coach who usually sets his teams up to defend resolutely. If Tottenham can't stop allowing goals, Liverpool can't stop scoring them. The unbeaten leaders netted four goals in the first half and added a fifth late on in a 5-2 thrashing of Everton in the Merseyside derby to stay eight points clear of Leicester, which beat last-place Watford 2-0. Liverpool scored five in a league game against Everton at home for the first time since 1965, despite leaving out two of the team’s formidable attacking trio — Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino — as well as captain Jordan Henderson. Everton couldn’t take advantage and slipped into the relegation zone on another dark day for its under-pressure manager Marco Silva, who might not stay in the job after this latest loss given the manner of his team’s defending at Anfield. There were also wins for Chelsea and Wolves — the teams in fourth and fifth place, respectively — while Southampton beat Norwich in a match between relegation contenders. KLOPP'S ROTATION Jürgen Klopp claimed his 100th Premier League win in style on a night his decision to rotate his team was utterly vindicated. The first three goals were scored by Divock Origi (2) and Xherdan Shaqiri, the players who replaced Firmino and Salah in the starting lineup. Sadio Mane added the fourth just before halftime and Georginio Wijnaldum scored the fifth in the 90th minute to pile more pressure on Silva, whose Everton team has lost nine of its 15 league games. “The type of mistakes we are making is because the players are playing under big pressure because of the position in the table,” Silva said. “They are making some mistakes that are not normal for the level we are.” VARDY'S STREAK Leicester striker Jamie Vardy scored for the seventh straight game in the Premier League and is closing in on his record of netting in 11 in a row, set in the team's improbable title-winning season in 2015-16. He set Leicester on its way against Watford by converting a 55th-minute penalty before James Maddison added the second goal in injury time. With a club record-tying seventh straight league win, Leicester climbed back in front of Manchester City, which briefly moved into second with a 4-1 win at Burnley on Tuesday. ABRAHAM' SCORING RETURN Tammy Abraham scored one goal and set up another for Chelsea in a 2-1 win over Aston Villa on his return to the team after a hip injury. Without Abraham, Chelsea surprisingly lost 1-0 to home to West Ham at the weekend but it looked a more dangerous team with the England striker. Having headed Chelsea in front with his 11th goal of the season, Abraham laid the ball off for Mason Mount to power home a finish high into the net from the edge of the area to give the hosts the lead again after Villa equalized through Trezeguet. Chelsea is fourth, three points behind Man City. WINS FOR WOLVES, SOUTHAMPTON Wolverhampton Wanderers consolidated fifth place and extended its unbeaten run in the Premier League to 10 matches with a 2-0 win over West Ham, whose manager Manuel Pellegrini is back under pressure for his job. Leander Dendoncker and Patrick Cutrone were the scorers for Wolves. Southampton moved out of the relegation zone by beating next-to-last Norwich 2-1. Danny Ings gave Southampton the lead with his eighth goal of the season and Ryan Bertrand also scored before Teemu Pukki's second-half reply for Norwich......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 5th, 2019

Harden scores 49 points, taking career-high 41 shots

By The Associated Press MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — James Harden scored 49 points on a whopping 41 shots from the field and the undermanned Houston Rockets won their seventh straight game, 125-105 over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Saturday night (Sunday, PHL time). With Russell Westbrook resting, the Rockets needed Harden to shoulder an even bigger scoring load than usual. The 41 attempts are the most in his career, and the most in the NBA this season, surpassing the 37 Golden State’s D’Angelo Russell took in an overtime loss Nov. 8 (Nov. 9, PHL time) in the same building in Minnesota. Harden made 16 of the 41 shots, going 8 for 22 from 3-point range. He was 9 of 11 on free throws. Ben McLemore scored 20 points. Undrafted rookie Chris Clemons scored a career-high 19 for the Rockets, who broke open the game with a 9-0 run in the fourth quarter. Austin Rivers also had 19 points. Karl-Anthony Towns had 27 points and 15 rebounds for the Timberwolves. TRAIL BLAZERS 121, SPURS 116 SAN ANTONIO (AP) — CJ McCollum scored 32 points and Portland beat San Antonio to spoil Tim Duncan’s first shot at coaching following Gregg Popovich’s ejection. Popovich was ejected after walking onto the court to berate official Jason Goldenberg over a non-call. Popovich calmly walked off the court following his first ejection of the season. The Spurs responded with Duncan and fellow assistants Becky Hammon and Will Hardy coaching by committee, but it was Duncan calling the plays and screaming out instruction. Damian Lillard added 22 points and Hassan Whiteside had 21 for Portland. LaMarcus Aldridge had 30 points and 13 rebounds Spurs. They’ve lost five straight. BUCKS 102, PACERS 83 INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Giannis Antetokounmpo had 26 points, 13 rebounds and six assists and Milwaukee forced Indiana into its worst shooting performance of the season. Brook Lopez added 15 points and eight rebounds. He had blocked five shots as the Pacers shot a season-low 32% from the field. Milwaukee, 9-3 despite a road-heavy schedule to start the season, shot 45%. Donte DiVincenzo added 14 points, Myles Turner, playing his first game since Oct. 30 (Oct. 31, PHL time), had 16 points, 11 rebounds and four blocks for Indiana. MAVERICKS 110, RAPTORS 102 DALLAS (AP) — Luka Doncic had 26 points and 15 rebounds in Dallas’ victory over Toronto. Doncic scored nine points in the fourth quarter as the Mavericks added to a one-point lead. He made all seven free throws in the quarter and finished with a career-best 15 free throws in 19 attempts. Delon Wright finished with 15 points, and banked in a fadeaway with 5 seconds left in the third quarter to send Dallas into the fourth quarter with a 78-77 edge. Wright added six points in the fourth quarter. Kristaps Porzingis had 20 points and matched his career best with 15 rebounds for Dallas. Norman Powell scored a season-high 26 points for Toronto. HEAT 109, PELICANS 94 MIAMI (AP) — Kendrick Nunn scored 22 points and Miami beat New Orleans to remained unbeaten at home. Bam Adebayo had 18 points and 14 rebounds, and Jimmy Butler added 16 points, 13 assists and eight rebound. Miami is 5-0 at home and 9-3 overall — tying the best 12-game start in team history. Nickell Alexander-Walker made six 3-pointers and had 27 points for New Orleans. NETS 117, BULLS 111 CHICAGO (AP) — Spencer Dinwiddie scored 24 points and Brooklyn beat Chicago without All-Star guard Kyrie Irving to snap a three-game losing streak. Irving entered Saturday (Sunday, PHL time) sixth in the NBA with 28.5 points per game but sat with a right shoulder injury. The short-handed Nets are also without Caris LeVert, who’s recovering from right thumb surgery. Zach LaVine scored 36 points for Chicago. HORNETS 103, KNICKS 102 NEW YORK (AP) — Devonte’ Graham made his ninth 3-pointer with 2.8 seconds remaining and had 29 points to lead Charlotte past New York. P.J. Washington scored 19 points, Terry Rozier had 16 and Marvin Williams added 13. RJ Barrett scored 22 points for the Knicks......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 17th, 2019