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St. Luke& rsquo;s sends team to Batangas

St. Luke’s Medical Center–Global City launched relief operations for the victims of Taal Volcano eruption on Jan. 18. .....»»

Category: financeSource: thestandard thestandardJan 25th, 2020

PBA teams try to get back into game shape as restart looms

Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) commissioner Willie Marcial admits that it would take some time for players to get back in game shape after almost five months removed from training due to the pandemic. There’s no doubt that they will show signs of obvious rust.   “Sigurado ‘yun, tinatanong ko ang mga players. Ang hirap magkaroon ng game shape,” said the league official. “Maski mag-practice ka ng ganito tapos scrimmages ka lang ng two to three weeks, hindi mo makukuha ang game shape mo.” “Talagang wala 'yung kondisyon, wala 'yung timing, wala 'yung shooting. So medyo kakalawangin pa ng konti ang mga players,” he added. But Marcial assured PBA fans that teams are now working doubly hard to get their players back into their competitive form as the league prepares for the restart of the Philippine Cup soon – possibly through a ‘bubble concept’ set-up. [Related story: Batangas, Laguna, Araneta all options for 'PBA Bubble'] In fact, at least half of the 12 member clubs have already began their respective individual workouts under a strict health and safety protocol Tuesday morning. [Related story: PBA: Ginebra earliest to start practice under "new normal"] Speaking during the online session of the Philippine Sportswriters Association Forum, Marcial, who was joined by league chairman Ricky Vargas of TNT, said that he has full confidence with how teams will whip up their players back into top form. “’Yun ang ginagawa ng mga coaches. ‘Yun ang ginagawa ng buong team na ayusin nila,” said Marcial. “Baka ‘yung iba nga kung may scrimmages twice a day na ‘yan para preparasyon.” The commissioner added that he already reminded the players to show the same level of competitiveness once the government gives the greenlight for games to resume. “[Sabi ko] ‘di tayo pwedeng maglaro na parang scrimmage. Kung maglalaro tayo eh ‘yung talagang totoong laro. Da-dive tayo. Kung ano ang ginagawa natin, may fans o wala, kailangan ‘yun ang gawin natin. Pumayag naman sila,” said Marcial.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 25th, 2020

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

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

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 24th, 2020

Wong names Morado, Salak among her top 5 setters

Deanna Wong is considered as one of top talents who make the future of Philippine volleyball look bright. A UAAP title in Season 81 and a Best Setter award in Season 80 are some of the accomplishments she collected as setter of the Ateneo de Manila University Lady Eagles. As talented and skilled as she is, Wong looks up to the legends that made and still making their marks in the local volleyball scene. Here is Wong’s list of Top 5 Pinay setters.    JIA MORADO “Well number one siyempre Ate Jia [Morado], my mentor talaga so wala nang bakit number one siya,” said Wong during her appearance on So She Did! Heady with great court vision and solid connection with her hitters best describe Morado. The UAAP Season 77 Best Setter established her legendary status during her stay with the Lady Eagles, who she piloted to back-to-back UAAP titles. Morado, who is a member of the national team, also helped Creamline win three titles in the Premier Volleyball League while collecting five straight Best Setter awards in the two-conference league.     TINA SALAK Longevity. This makes Salak a legend among the setters in the country. The 44-year old playmaker started to make waves when she led Far Eastern University to a couple of championships in the mid-90s. Salak was also the main setter of the 2005 Southeast Asian Games bronze medal team – the last squad to earn a podium finish in the biennial meet. The Army personnel played in the PVL and in the Philippine Superliga up until 2018 before going full time as coach of De La Salle-Zobel girls team.    KIM FAJARDO De La Salle University won three titles during her stint with the Lady Spikers. Fajardo is well-known for her well-rounded approach in playmaking. She easily adapts with the style of her hitters, good at reading the defense and a vocal leader inside the court. The Batangas native bagged three Best Setter awards and a Best Server recognition during her stay with the green and white. Her fierce competition with Morado made the Ateneo-DLSU rivalry extra colorful. Fajardo is also enjoying a successful career with F2 Logistics in the PSL and is a member of the national team.    JEM FERRER A member of the Ateneo Fab Five, Ferrer can be considered as one of the Lady Eagles who paved the way for Ateneo’s success in the UAAP. Ferrer was named Best Setter three times and helped the Lady Eagles advance to their first-ever Finals appearance in Season 74. Ferrer remains as one of the PVL’s top playmakers.   RHEA DIMACULANGAN University of Sto. Tomas has yet to find a setter that would equal the caliber of Dimaculangan. With her orchestrating the Tigresses’ plays, UST went on to win the Season 72 crown while bagging the Best Server and Finals Most Valuable Player honors. Dimaculangan is a member of the national team.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 20th, 2020

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

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

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 17th, 2020

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

Indians Bieber strikes out 13 against Twins to tie record

By The Associated Press CLEVELAND (AP) — Cleveland’s Shane Bieber tied the major league record for strikeouts in a pitcher’s first two starts of the season, punching out 13 Minnesota Twins over eight innings in the Indians’ 2-0 victory on Thursday night. Bieber (2-0) fanned 14 over six scoreless innings on Friday against Kansas City. His 27 strikeouts in the two games matched the record set by Karl Spooner of the Brooklyn Dodgers in September 1954 during the first two starts of his short career. Facing a Twins team that came in with the second-best run differential in baseball, Bieber allowed three singles in his eight innings. Francisco Lindor supplied all the offense Cleveland needed with a two-run homer in the third inning off Jose Berríos (0-1). After Jose Ramirez singled with two outs, Berrios left an 0-2 pitch up over the plate, and Lindor drove it over the fence in right for his second homer of the season. YANKEES 8, ORIOLES 6 BALTIMORE (AP) — Aaron Judge hit a three-run homer in the ninth inning after New York blew an early five-run lead, and the Yankees swept an impromptu two-game series. Luke Voit hit his first career grand slam for the Yankees, who stretched their winning streak against Baltimore to 18 games and notched their 17th consecutive victory at Camden Yards. New York has swept six straight series from the Orioles dating to early last year. Judge’s second homer in two games — a no-doubt shot to left off Cole Sulser (0-1) — came after Pedro Severino put Baltimore in front with a two-run drive in the eighth against Jonathan Loaisiga (1-0). Zack Britton worked the ninth for his second save. After Voit connected in a five-run first inning against John Means, Hanser Alberto hit a two-run drive in the bottom half off J.A. Happ. Rio Ruiz homered for the third time in five games with a man on in the second to cut the deficit to 5-4. RED SOX 4, METS 2 NEW YORK (AP) — Christian Vázquez hit two more homers and Martín Pérez gave Boston’s patchwork rotation a much-needed lift. Pérez (1-1) overcame four walks and some shaky defense behind him, allowing only two hits while striking out five in 5 2/3 innings for his first win with the Red Sox. Vázquez connected twice off Steven Matz (0-1), including a two-run shot on an 0-2 pitch in the fourth that put Boston ahead 3-2. Boston loaded the bases with nobody out in the ninth and added an insurance run when Edwin Díaz hit José Peraza with a pitch. Brandon Workman, on the mound for the third straight day after throwing 30 pitches Wednesday, got the last three outs for his second save — both in the last two nights. ROYALS 5, TIGERS 3 DETROIT (AP) — Trevor Rosenthal pitched a scoreless ninth for his first save since 2017 and Kansas City overcame Miguel Cabrera’s first multihomer game since 2016. Once a standout closer for St. Louis, Rosenthal has struggled with his health and his effectiveness in recent years, finishing 2019 with a 13.50 ERA in 22 appearances with the Nationals and Tigers. When he retired JaCoby Jones on a grounder to end the game, he gave his glove a little celebratory tap. The Royals' offense came through late. Whit Merrifield scored on Salvador Perez’s grounder to break a 2-all tie in the seventh. Bubba Starling added a double the following inning that gave Kansas City two insurance runs it ended up needing. Cabrera hit solo homers in the first and eighth, and Jonathan Schoop added one for Detroit in the fourth. It was Cabrera’s first multihomer game since Sept. 30, 2016 at Atlanta, and he’s gone deep three times in the first seven games this year after hitting only 12 home runs in 2019. Greg Holland (1-0) won in relief for the Royals, and Jose Cisnero (1-1) took the loss. BRAVES 2, RAYS 1 ATLANTA (AP) — Max Fried retired Tampa Bay’s first 14 batters and combined with three relievers on a four-hitter to lead Atlanta. Dansby Swanson had a run-scoring single in Atlanta’s two-run second inning. Fried (1-0) struck out seven and walked one while allowing one run in 6 2/3 innings. The left-hander improved to 4-0 in four interleague starts. Luke Jackson, and Shane Greene combined for four outs before Mark Melancon pitched the ninth for his second save. Ryan Yarbrough (0-1) allowed two runs on only two hits with three walks in 6 1/3 innings. NATIONALS 6, BLUE JAYS 4 WASHINGTON (AP) — Michael A. Taylor’s second homer of the season helped the “visiting” Nationals knock around struggling Hyun-Jin Ryu and beat home-away-from-home Toronto before both teams head into a coronavirus-caused mini break. Kurt Suzuki delivered a two-run double and Asdrúbal Cabrera added an RBI double off Ryu (0-1), who gave up Taylor’s two-run shot to straightaway center that he celebrated with a socially distanced dugout dance in the fourth. Erick Fedde, making his second start in place of a sidelined Stephen Strasburg, gave up two runs in 3 1/3 innings. Ryne Harper (1-0) followed and got five outs for the win. Daniel Hudson pitched the ninth to earn his first save of the year. Nationals rookie third baseman Carter Kieboom reached base four times — two singles, two walks — and scored twice. Teoscar Hernández homered twice, giving him four during this four-game series at Washington, and Cavan Biggio hit a solo shot for Toronto. Neither team will play again until Tuesday, a four-day gap that is normally unheard of in baseball, where clubs can go weeks at a time without any respite......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 31st, 2020

Bagunas, former NU teammates reunite in club league

Bryan Bagunas could be looking at a reunion with former National University teammates in the Spikers’ Turf. The 2019 Southeast Asian Games silver medalist, who re-signed with Go for Gold three weeks ago, bared that the although not yet cast in stone, the organization is looking to bring in former Bulldogs to back him up. “Bale magtatayo na ata ng sariling Go for Gold team. Kasama pa rin ang Air Force pero siyempre iilang players na lang meron sa Air Force pero di pa finalized 'yun,” Bagunas told ABS-CBN Sports. “Parang bubuuin ulit kaming NU, parang ganun.” Bagunas last played with Philippine Air Force in the 2019 Reinforced Conference where the Jet Spikers finished runners-up to Cignal. He skipped the season-ending Open Conference to play in the Japan V. League club Oita Miyoshi Weiss Adler. The Balayan, Batangas pride will only suit up for Go for Gold if his schedule permits as he is set to return to Japan for another season with the Weiss Adler.  Bagunas’ former National University teammate and national team libero Ricky Marcos welcomes the possibility of playing alongside the UAAP Season 81 Most Valuable Player and other Bulldogs alumni Francis Saura, Kim Malabunga and Fauzi Ismail. “Bakit hindi, di ba? Doon na ako sa matagal ko nang nakakasama po sa loob ng court, sila kuya Bryan,” Marcos said. Marcos played for the Sta. Elena-backed NU in the Open Conference. He was named Best Libero in the same tournament where the Bulldogs finished third. The Spikers’ Turf along with the Premier Volleyball League and Philippine Superliga are awaiting the go-signal from the government to resume activities amid the health crisis.       --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 20th, 2020

Bagunas begins building dream house for parents

Bryan Bagunas is planning something big for his hard-earned money. While his peers are occupied with their business ventures with the resumption of volleyball events still up in the air because of the health crisis, the national team stalwart is busy with his own project.       “As of now wala pa akong binabalak na negosyo kasi magpapatayo ako ng bahay ng parents ko,” Bagunas told ABS-CBN Sports. The former UAAP Most Valuable Player saved some of his earnings as an import for Oita Miyoshi Weiss Adler in the Japan V. Premier League to buy a lot and eventually build a house for his parents in Batangas. “Kakabili ko lang ng lot dun then papatatyuan ko naman sila ng bahay. Yun muna ang unahin ko as of now,” said the 2019 Southeast Asian Games silver medalist and two-time UAAP champion. The pride of Balayan, Batangas bought a 430 sq. meter property where he plans to construct his parents’ house. As of now his parents are still planning on the design and size of the house. “Depende pa sa kanila kung anong gusto nilang design. Sila na mamili para naman sa kanila ‘yun. Ireregalo ko sa kanila,” said Bagunas. He added that once the house design is settled, they can then proceed with the construction. “Hindi pa nasisimulan bale pinag-aaralan pa lang ng tatay ko. Kasi ang tatay ko marunong ding gumawa ng bahay,” said Bagunas. Bagunas is set to fly back to Japan in September to resume training with the Weiss Adler. On Wednesday, Bagunas signed with Spikers’ Turf club team Go for Gold. He cleared that the there’s no conflict of schedule with his league commitments here and in Japan.     .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 3rd, 2020

10 things that make Alyssa Valdez phenomenal

Alyssa Valdez has arguably made the biggest impact in Philippine volleyball.   Her skills, passion and charisma endeared her to volleyball supporters, purists or casual fans, from all walks of life. She brings energy and leadership to every team that she’s joined. Valdez draws a huge crowd every time she plays. Valdez is the poster girl of the sport that for years struggled to draw mainstream attention in a nation which considers basketball as its biggest sporting event. The 27-year old pride of San Juan, Batangas is the face of local volleyball. So on her birthday today, let’s look at some of the things that makes the Phenom really phenomenal.   Two-time UAAP women’s champion Valdez is Ateneo de Manila University’s undisputed Queen Eagle. Talks about the Lady Eagles’ breakthrough championship will not be complete without the mention of her name. After two years of bridesmaid finishes, Ateneo bagged its first-ever UAAP title in 2014 after beating the thrice-to-beat De La Salle University in four games in the Finals despite leading a young band of Lady Eagles playing under the new system of Thai coach Tai Bundit. The following year, Ateneo, with Valdez at the helm, retained its crown in a tournament-sweeping fashion.      Three-time UAAP Most Valuable Player Her skills during her collegiate career stood out among her peers. Valdez’s effort was rewarded with three Most Valuable Player awards in Season 76, Season 77 and in her last playing year in Season 78 in 2016. She also pocketed the Season 76 Finals MVP award.   Young phenom Valdez didn’t build her reputation overnight. It was her hard work and effort that brought her where she is right now. She was still a diamond in the rough when she was recruited by University of Sto. Tomas in a regional meet. But the Espana-based squad polished Valdez into a real gem of a player. Valdez, backed by a powerful lineup that featured the likes of Kim Fajardo and Jaja Santiago, won three straight UAAP girls’ titles and in the process collected three season MVPs. She was also named UAAP high school athlete of the year twice.        National team mainstay With her talents, dedication and good work ethics, Valdez has been a mainstay with the national team. Her first tour of duty was in 2008 when she represented the country in the Asian Youth Championship held in Pasig City. She joined the PHI Team in the 2014 FIVB Southeast Asian Zone qualifier in Vietnam. In 2015, she donned the tricolors for the Asian U-23 Championship and on the same year saw action in the country’s return in the Southeast Asian Games in Singapore after a decade of absence. Since then Valdez participated in the 2017 Kuala Lumpur and 2019 Manila SEA Games. She also took part in the 2017 Asian Senior Women’s Championship and the 2018 Jakarta Asian Games.     2015 SEA Games flagbearer Valdez also carries the honor as being the first-ever volleyball player to become the PHI flag-bearer in the SEA Games. She marched holding the national color in front of Team Philippines during the traditional parade of nations inside the OCBC Arena in the 2015 Singapore SEA Games.   Accomplished commercial league star She has been collecting commercial league titles since high school starting from the Shakey’s Girls Volleyball League. Valdez was also successful in the different conferences of the defunct V-League, racking up championships and individual accolades. In the Premier Volleyball League, she powered Creamline to three titles including a sweep of the Season 2 Reinforced and Open Conferences in 2018. She won three conference MVP awards.      Import abroad International leagues took notice of Valdez’s talents and charm so it’s not surprising that she landed offers to play abroad. Valdez played as an import in Thailand for 3BB Nakornnont from 2016 to 2017. After her stint in Thailand, Valdez flew to Taiwan to play for Attack Line.   Host, Actress, TV personality Valdez is a regular fixture in different sports shows in ABS-CBN S+A. She’s a host, courtside reporter and a game analyst.   Valdez also had a few showbiz stints. She appeared in some Kapamilya teleserye including a cameo in ‘And I Love You So’ in 2016 alongside Julia Barretto and Miles Ocampo and in the movie ‘My Letters to Happy’ with by TJ Trinidad and Glaiza De Castro.    Aside from her TV and movie career, Valdez is also one of the most recognizable athlete product endorsers.   Social media influencer She is also one of the most popular Filipino athlete on social media. As of posting, Valdez has 1.9 million Twitter followers, 1.3 million followers on Instagram and her YouTube channel has more than 76,000 subscribers.   Featured in the Olympics Channel website While the likes of Sisi Rondina, Jaja Santiago and Bryan Bagunas were featured in the FIVB website, Valdez’s impact on Philippine Volleyball was highlighted in a feature article in no less than the Olympic Channel website. The article touched about her humble beginnings to her meteoric rise and why she is regarded as the nation’s brightest star in the sport. These are just some of the things take make Valdez a true pride of our nation in the sport Happy birthday, Alyssa!.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 29th, 2020

Fil-Am UFC veteran Mark Muñoz shares his thoughts on the state of Filipino MMA

Apart from basketball and, as of recent years, volleyball, combat sports like boxing and mixed martial arts have been quite popular among Filipino sports fans.  A lot of credit for that goes to the likes of eight-division boxing world champion Manny Pacquiao, four-division boxing champion Nonito Donaire Jr., Donnie Nietes, and those who came before them like Gabriel “Flash” Elorde, Pancho Villa, and Gerry Peñalosa, all of whom made it big on the world stage.  In recent years, a number of Filipinos are have also made a name for themselves in the global mixed martial arts arena, and one of the early big stars was none other than former UFC veteran Mark “The Filipino Wrecking Machine” Muñoz.  From 2009 to 2015, Muñoz was one of the UFC’s top middleweight contenders and proudly carried the Filipino flag with him each time he stepped inside the Octagon.  In May of 2015, on the UFC’s inaugural fight card in Manila, Muñoz retired in front of his kababayans after a unanimous decision win over Luke Barnatt.  (READ ALSO: Filipino-American MMA star Mark Muñoz recalls retirement bout in Manila) Muñoz’s run in the UFC came at a time when the North American promotion was easily accessible to fans in the Philippines, and he became a household name in terms of Filipino MMA.  Now, five years after Muñoz’s retirement, MMA in the Philippines has never been more popular, thanks in large part to promotions like the Asia-based ONE Championship, which holds around four events in Manila every year, and of course, the URCC, the Philippines’ first-ever MMA promotion.  Today, homegrown Filipino talents like Eduard Folayang, Joshua Pacio, Kevin Belingon, Denice Zamboanga, Chris Hoffman, an many others have also gotten their time to shine on the world stage, and Muñoz believes that it’s because Filipinos are natural fighters.  “I just feel Filipinos in general have that combat mentality. That’s already inside of them,” Muñoz said on The Hitlist vodcast. “I feel that Filipinos, from the days that we have to get our independence from the Spanish, Jose Rizal, he’s a hero in the nation, it’s just embedded in our culture, in our blood, so I just feel like Filipinos in general would be amazing fighters.” Munoz made special mention of guys like former ONE world champions Folayang and Belingon, as well as URCC champions Hoffman, and Ernesto Montilla Jr.  “I mean you just look at the…Filipinos now, it’s growing and getting better. I’ve been following Eduard Folayang. He’s an amazing representative of the Philippines, Kevin Belingon, he’s the man. I think there’s another one that was on the card when I fought, Mark Eddiva is good. I know I’m leaving out a lot of fighters, there’s Ernesto Montilla Jr., when I was there in training, a guy caught my eyes, Chris Hoffman trained with me and helped me out. I know he’s doing big things in the Philippines. I think he’s URCC champion.”  “There’s a lot of good fighters in the Philippines. I know I’m leaving out a lot and I don’t want to do that but there’s a lot of good talents in the Philippines and I wanna come, I wanna be there and help them in wrestling, in MMA wresting, in ground and pound, in everything that was my specialty in MMA,” he added.  While Filipinos have indeed excelled in mixed martial arts, one aspect continues to be perceived as the Filipino fighter’s weakness is the ground game, whether it be wrestling or grappling.  (READ ALSO: Mark Muñoz not ruling out MMA return) Today’s young stars, guys like Team Lakay’s Pacio and Danny Kingad have displayed some exceptional grappling in their past performances, but Muñoz, a former collegiate wrestler and current wrestling coach, made a living off taking guys down and keeping them grounded.  “I think the common thing that everyone says with MMA is wrestling. Wrestling is the ultimate neutralizer. If you don’t have a good understanding of wrestling, you’re gonna have a really hard time becoming one of the, being ranked in the world or even be a champion,” Muñoz explained. “If you look at all the champions now, or the ones that are ranked in the world. A lot of them have background in wrestling. I feel that that’s something that the Philippines needs.” Muñoz has always said that one of the things he would most like to do is to help develop wrestling in the Philippines and hopes to one day be able to finally fulfill that mission.  “I’m the guy to do that for them. I need to make sure I spend time in the Philippines to be able to help that,” he continued......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 19th, 2020

Bryan Bagunas: Basketball s loss is volleyball s gain

Who would’ve thought that a flubbed lay-up in a basketball game would convince Bryan Bagunas to embrace a different sport that eventually brought him success? The Southeast Asian Games silver medalist shared on The Score’s Kalye Confessions an anecdote on how his volleyball career started. Just like most boys in this hoops-crazy nation, Bagunas initially found interest playing basketball. He tried volleyball just out of curiosity.    During his sophomore year in high school, the Balayan, Batangas native joined both basketball and volleyball competitions in his school’s intramurals. A rather embarrassing moment made him realize that basketball may not be for him. “Naglaro ako ng basketball. Kaso nag-iisa na lang ako, nag-layup ako sablay,” recalled the Oita Miyoshi Weiss Adler import in the Japan V. Premier League. “Kaya sabi ko parang ayoko nang mag-basketball ah.” He fared better in volleyball. “Eh ‘di ‘yun sa volleyball naman. Nag-OK naman, second year high school ata kami nun nu’ng nag-champion kami nun sa Intrams eh,” he said. “Eh ‘di ‘yun kinuha na nila ako. Dun na nagsimula ‘yun.” From there he became a member of Balayan National High School’s volleyball team and was eventually chosen to represent Region IV-A in the 2014 Palarong Pambansa in Sta. Cruz, Laguna in his senior year. Although his team was booted out in the quarterfinals by eventual gold medalist Western Visayas, National University scouts noticed Bagunas' height and talent.     Bulldogs head coach Dante Alinsurin and his assistant Jessie Lopez offered Bagunas a chance to play for the then reigning two-time UAAP men’s volleyball champion NU.   “Si Coach Jessie siya pa kumuha ng phone number ko nun saka si Coach Dante. Tapos pinuntahan nila ako sa bahay sa Balayan, Batangas,” said Bagunas. His first three years with the Bulldogs resulted in heartbreaks as NU fell short in the Finals against the Marck Espejo-bannered Ateneo de Manila University. Bagunas finally won his first UAAP title in Season 80 when the Bulldogs knocked the crown off the Blue Eagles’ heads. He led NU to back-to-back titles the following year where he also bagged the Most Valuable Player award for a perfect collegiate career exit. Bagunas has been a member of the national team since 2017. In the 2019 SEA Games, Bagunas helped the Philippines establish history by taking the silver medal for the first time since 1977. He is also the second homegrown talent to be tapped as an import in Japan after Espejo. Bagunas is enjoying great success in volleyball, all thanks to a missed lay-up.   ---         Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles     .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 4th, 2020

Bagunas tests negative for COVID-19, cleared to go home

Bryan Bagunas tested negative for coronavirus (COVID-19) and was cleared to go home after almost a week since he arrived from Japan. The Philippine men’s volleyball team star received his swab test result on Thursday, six days after he arrived in Manila. In a Twitter post by Dyan Castillejo, the 30th Southeast Asian Games silver medalist got his test result through the help of Bases Conversion and Development Authority President and CEO and deputy chief implementer of the national policy against COVID-19 Vince Dizon, Department of Tourism secretary Berna Romulo-Puyat and the Philippine Sports Commission chairman William 'Butch' Ramirez.. Negative Result received and happy to be able to leave hotel after 7 days and go home ! @bryanbagunas01_ SeaG Volleyball Silver Medalist . Thank u for the quick help Vince Dizon and DOT Sec Berna and PSC pic.twitter.com/HtLOiO84BM — Dyan Castillejo (@DYANCASTILLEJO) May 21, 2020 Bagunas, who plays for Oita Miyoshi Weiss Adler in the Japan V. Premier League, on Wednesday aired his concerns about the duration of receiving his test result in his Twitter account. Like other Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) and others flying in from abroad, Bagunas had undergo swab testing as part of the government’s preventive measure against the pandemic. He was holed up in a hotel in Quezon City while waiting for his clearance. The two-time UAAP champion and Season 81 Most Valuable Player returned to the country after the cancellation of a pre-season tournament in Japan where his team was supposed to participate. Bagunas, a native of Balayan, Batangas, plans to fly back to Japan in August or September.     ---      Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 21st, 2020

Bagunas featured in FIVB website

National men’s team standout Bryan Bagunas became the latest Filipino volleyball star to be featured in the official FIVB website. The 30th Manila Southeast Asian Games silver medalist in the feature article talked about how he got into volleyball. [Bagunas gives men's volleyball a boost in the Philippines]  “Basketball was the first sport I played, then I got curious in playing volleyball in one of our high school intramurals. It was during my sophomore year when I started to focus on playing volleyball,” said Bagunas, who is currently playing for Oita Miyoshi Weiss Adler as an import in the prestigious Japan V. Premier League.   “There was even a time that I had to participate in both basketball and volleyball events in the intramurals, added the pride of Balayan, Batangas. “But I fell in love with volleyball more, and since then I enjoyed playing it and did my best to improve myself.” Bagunas, a two-time UAAP champion and Season 81 Most Valuable Player, also shared his struggles while playing for National University. “My first three years of playing for my university were quite frustrating but also challenging because we always finished as runners-up,” he said. “It was in 2018 when I got the chance to taste a championship title, then I followed it up with another title win, which opened more opportunities for me as an athlete. I became a club player in my third year in university and then a national team player that participated at the 2017 Southeast Asian Games. At this point, I was not only doing it for myself, I was able to help my family as well.” The 2019 Philippine Sportswriters Association Mr. Volleyball shared that his most cherished moment as part of the national squad was the historic silver medal finish that ended the country’s podium drought since winning the bronze medal in the 1991 edition of the biennial met and first runner-up finish since 1977 in Malaysia.   “It may not be a gold medal but to bring the country back to a final after 42 years felt like we won the championship,” he said. “It felt good to bring honor and pride for the country, seeing the faces of our countrymen and how proud they were of our achievement was priceless.” Bagunas is the third local volleyball star to be featured in the FIVB website after Sisi Rondina and Jaja Santiago......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 30th, 2020

Even at home, the work continues for Sacramento Kings head coach Luke Walton

When the NBA was postponed in mid-March due to a player testing positive for COVID-19, there was immediately an air of uncertainty as to whether the world’s biggest basketball league would resume action later on in the year. Now, over a month later, that uncertainty remains there, even more so now. The playoffs should have started by now, which makes the NBA’s return even more of a question mark, especially in terms of how the league would decide to go about getting the season back on track. For now, there are definitely more questions than answers, but for most of the players and the coaches and the people involved in the league, work continues, even at home. That’s very much the case for Sacramento Kings head coach Luke Walton, who says he continues to find ways to continue to get things done, even under quarantine. When the season came to an abrupt halt, the Kings were 11th in the Western Conference, but were tied with the tenth and the ninth seeds at 3.5 games behind the eighth-seeded Memphis Grizzlies, meaning that they were very much in the running for the last spot in the post-season. With a jump straight into the playoffs being discussed as an option for the league’s return, it would mean that they would once again miss the post-season without having the chance to make one final run in the regular season. Right now however, Walton says that the focus is on the safety of everyone from this dreaded disease. “Normally, I would say that yes, it would feel like [a missed opportunity for a playoff chase]. But again, this is one of those rare circumstances in life where the safety of everyone involved is really what we’re thinking about,” Walton said in an interview with the NBA. “And if that means that were the case then hey, we continue to look forward. We continue to learn from what we did have this year and we take that information and we go full steam ahead into next season.” The Kings were set to take on the tenth-seeded New Orleans Pelicans in an important battle for playoff positioning the day that the league ultimately decided to postpone the games. If the league decides to jump right into the post-season, Walton says that they’d be fully behind the decision if it means finally having the season back. “This is one of those few times where truly the most important thing is that we get past this [pandemic] together. And by together, I mean everybody. Together, we get past this. If that’s what it takes for the NBA to come to a decision, we will be behind it. Normally I would say basketball is more important than most things I’ve gone through in life, but with this the only thing that really matters is that we get through it.” Walton adds that prior to the postponement, there was an excitement within the team because of how they were playing and the position that they were in. “We were excited. Like I said, we were playing high level basketball. As far as a team embracing what it needs to do. What I mean by that is individuals understanding their roles, individuals understand-ing what we need out of them and those individuals making sacrifices for the betterment of the team. I think that’s why we were winning games at a pretty solid rate towards the end.” “As a coach, that is what you’re looking for. As you said, Alex [Len], [Kent Bazemore] coming over to add some tough-ness and physicality that we needed and the defensive level that was being played. A big part of it was having De’Aaron [Fox] get going like that and getting to the free-throw line consistently. In the last few games, I know it’s a small sample size, he was shooting around 90 percent and if you get there eight times a game, that is going to help. Buddy [Hield] was just really dominating his role for us coming off the bench. [Bogdan Bogdanovic] in the starting lineup was making nice basketball plays. We had a lot of good positive things going for us as a team and we were excited. We were looking forward to every matchup that we had, and our guys were giving us everything they had,” he added. On a personal level, Walton says that it doesn’t know if the league will indeed return to finish off the 2019-2020 season. “Honestly, I have no idea. I think everyone wants to play but I think everyone understands top priority is the safety of the fans, the media and everyone that’s involved in this. As much as everyone wants to get back to playing, no one is pressing it and we know what is most important.” For now however, Walton says that he and the players are doing the most that they can during the extended time off. He does admit however, that these past month and a half has been tough. “It’s a challenge. In staying in communication with our guys and what we’ve all come to realize is what is most important and that is the health and safety of everybody; the fans, the players, the families and as much as we want to get out there and play basketball, coach basketball, and compete and be a symbol of strength for our community during this time, we know the most important part of this is the social distancing, staying healthy, and keeping people healthy. To answer your question, there isn’t a lot that the guys can do. We sent out exercise machines, there are workouts online, there [are] option-al Zoom yoga classes. A lot of guys at this point are at home and whether that’s a basketball hoop at home or a treadmill, they are doing what they can under the circumstances.” Walton adds that he has also done some additional coaching at home by homeschooling his children, before doing his work as a coach for the Kings. “We practice social distancing and take it very seriously. My family and I are still up here in the Sacramento area and we have young kids, so the mornings are dedicated to homeschooling and going on walks around the neighborhood.” “When we get done with that, that is when I start checking in with some [players] and some of the coaches and dedicate some time to move our work forward. In the evenings, we’ll either watch some shows or I’ll turn on some of our game film from earlier this year to look at different things and keep trying to grow and learn and understand our team a little more. Then, it’s pretty much like Groundhog Day. We wake up and do the same thing the next day. We are staying busy. We know the top priority, again, is the safety for everyone. I’m trying to use this time to continue to grow and continue to understand our guys more,” he continued. Walton adds that he hopes the players also use this time to get into other things as well and not just spend their free time playing video games. “A big part of what I believe in as a coach, is player development. Especially in today’s NBA, part of that is developing off the court as well. This is a great time for some of those things, whether it is like you said, reading books, listening to podcasts. Meditation is something we encourage our players to do and get into. That’s something that we’re constantly trying to get our players to accept and do. One, because we feel like as coaches, it’s the right thing to do to help people grow. And two, we feel as if you’re helping people grow off the court as people, the quicker they’re going to mature on the court as players. Yeah, this is a time that all those things are available to do. We can’t and we won’t force anyone to do them, but it’s highly encouraged that our players are taking the time to continue to chal-lenge themselves and grow in different areas.”.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 24th, 2020

MPBL Commissioner Duremdes: 'We’re going to finish the season'

The Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League Lakan Season will push through with its stalled division and national finals. MPBL Commissioner Kenneth Duremdes gave this assurance Wednesday to quash speculations the league is going to cancel the remaining games of its third season in the wake of the prolonged COVID-19 pandemic. As to when will be the resumption of the division finals, Duremdes said it will depend on the national government’s decision on easing up restrictions on the staging of public gatherings, including sports events. “We’re going to finish the season, said Duremdes, who is holed up in his hometown of Koronadal, South Cotabato. “We’re just waiting for the clearance of the national government.” President Rodrigo Duterte has yet to announce whether the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine (ECQ), in effect until April 30, will be lifted, extended, or modified. Though the consensus is a modified ECQ will be implemented, Duremdes said there are a lot of issues to be tackled before the MPBL can resume. “First, we need to advice the four teams (San Juan Knights, Makati Super Crunch, Davao Occidental Tigers, Basilan Steel) involved since they are all coming from inactivity and the players need to get back in shape,” said Duremdes. “Then we need to consider the stand of the LGUs (local government units). Other factors to be considered, according to Duremdes, are land travel, resumption of domestic flights, sea travel, and the availability of hotels, restaurants, and game venues. “We can play as soon as the ECQ is lifted but behind closed doors,” said Duremdes. “Hopefully the situation brightens up.” Both the South division finals between San Juan and Makati and the North division finals between Davao and Basilan are tied at 1-1, forging Game 3 deciders. San Juan beat Makati, 76-60, in their series opener but Makati rebounded with a 91-88 victory in Game 2 held behind closed doors at FilOil Flying V Arena in San Juan. Basilan edged Davao, 74-72, in Game 1 in Tagum City, but Davao equalized with an 81-76 triumph in Game 2 held at the jampacked Lamitan City Gymnasium. The division winners will dispute the Lakan Season national crown in a best-of-five series. The Batangas City Tanduay Athletics ruled the inaugural MPBL Anta Rajah Cup participated in by 10 teams, while the San Juan Knights emerged champions of the 26-team Datu Cup. Now boasting 31 teams, MPBL is supposed to open its fourth season on June 12, but it will be moved back owing to recent developments. Like Duremdes, MPBL founder and CEO (chief executive officer) Sen. Manny Pacquiao is also bent on finishing the Lakan Season once the coronavirus gets contained. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 22nd, 2020

MPBL All-Star MVP Viernes treats every game the same way

For most players, an All-Star game is an avenue to take a break from the competitiveness of the game and build a bond between the league’s best players. But that isn’t the case for Batangas-Tanduay’s Jeff Viernes. “Sabi ko nga, mental focus ko every time na naglalaro ako, All-Star man yan o every game, tini-treat ko siya the same. I'm a very competitive player. Ginagawa ko lang lahat, yung best ko,” Viernes revealed. And Viernes’ fierce approach to the game definitely showed when his South All-Stars squad were at the jaws of defeat against the North All-Stars in the 2019-20 Chooks-to-Go/MPBL Lakan Cup All-Star game at the Mall of Asia Arena, Thursday. Down by six points with 3:15 remaining in regulation, the pint-sized guard from Isabela pumped in 12 in the South’s last 15 points – including two crucial free throws – which sent the game to overtime. Viernes then conspired with Gab Banal and opened the extra period with a 10-0 barrage to give the South a comfortable 122-112 advantage with 3:19 ticks left. Though the quintet of Renato Ular, Michael Juico, Aris Dionisio, and Jeric Teng were able to answer with 10-0 blast for the North and the knot the scores at 122-all, the product of St. Clare sank 4-of-4 from the charity stripe in the final 25 seconds of the game to seal the victory. “Siyempre nandoon pa rin yung we're having fun kasi All-Star pa rin yun. Pero syempre may sari-sarili kaming pride pa rin. Kahit sabihin mong All-Star, gusto naming ibigay namin ang best namin at bigyan ng magandang show yung fans,” shared Viernes, who also pocketed PHP 50,000 courtesy of Sen. Manny Pacquiao for his efforts. “I think nagawa naman namin both, nag-enjoy kami at nabigyan namin yung fans ng sobrang gandang laban, very intense. Siguro wala na kaming hihilingin pa, nakuha namin yung panalo. Very fortunate lang and we're very thankful,” he added. When the dust settled, Viernes collected 28 points, six assists, and six rebounds and took home his second consecutive All-Star Game Most Valuable Player award. And for the 29-year-old spitfire guard, the team’s desire to win led to their on-court chemistry which resulted to the victory. “Yung back-to-back MVP, bonus na lang din,” said Viernes. “Nagusap usap kami sa dugout and we all want to win. I think kaya din maganda ang chemistry namin kahit second time kami magkakasama, yung una All-Star last year. Maganda. Happy kami." And South head coach Don Dulay could not agree more as he witnessed the camaraderie first hand. “One thing I noticed, we had a lot more fun on the bench. Everybody on the bench, the whole second half, we're cheering who's on the court,” Dulay said......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 14th, 2020

MPBL: North repeats as champions in Executive game

For the second straight year, the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League Executive game went to the North. The North Executive All-Stars repeated over their counterparts from the South, taking a 79-68 win Thursday at the MOA Arena in the 2020 MPBL All-Star Games. Makati-Super Crunch team owner Paolo Orbeta bagged MVP honors for a second year in a row after leading all scorers with 29 points. He also had eight rebounds, four assists, and two steals. Orbeta partnered with former UST Growling Tiger Jemal Vizcarra for a17-7 run late that ultimately won them the game. "Siyempre hardest is to win back-to-back championship. We have to motivate ourselves kung paano kami magcha-champion. Kailangan namin kunin ito sa other team," Orbeta said. The North Executives were made up of Nueva Ecija’s assistant team manager Mike Baldos, Caloocan head coach John Kallos, Quezon City team owner Onyx Crisologo, Bataan team manager Gary Palmero, Pasay co-owner Miguel Ligot, Navotas team owner Rico Quicho, Valenzuela congressman Eric Martinez, Pampanga team owner AG Gonzales, Manila owner Roman Ang, Marikina team owner and head coach Elvis Tolentino, San Juan team executive Chris Conwi, and Bulacan team owner and congressman Jonathan Alvarez. Meanwhile, the South were composed of Bacoor team manager JR Navarro, Basilan general Manager Danny Rebosura, Muntinlupa team manager Kaizer Galvez, Binan team owner Gel Alonte, Cebu owner Miguel Wong, Zamboanga team manager Alvin Munio, Davao assistant team manager Raul Alao, Batangas team manager Gerrin Tee, Bacoor team owner Dennis Abella, and Mindoro team owner Justin Tan. The South got 22 points from Javelosa in the loss. MPBL founder Manny Pacquiao didn't suit up this yeaar. the Fighting Senator scored 28 points in a South loss in 2019. — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 13th, 2020

MPBL: Bicol secures playoff spot

ANGELES, PAMPANGA – Heading into their 2019-20 Chooks-to-Go/MPBL Lakan Season match-up against General Santos-Burlington, the Bicol-LCC Stores Volcanoes were downcast. The Volcanoes had just come off arguably their worst outing of the season, falling to lowly squad Rizal-Xentro Mall last Thursday. Needing only one win to secure their place in the playoff picture, Bicol faltered against the Golden Coolers and took a 77-79 loss, leaving their post-season aspirations still hanging in the balance. To show how disappointed he was with the outcome, Volcanoes head coach Mon Kallos skipped their practice the next day. “Sa totoo lang hindi ako gumawa ng gameplan today kasi hindi ako umattend ng practice namin before the game. Sinabi ko sa kanila, masama ang loob ko na hindi naman tayo dapat natalo doon,” shared Kallos. It ended up being a wake-up call to his players as Bicol fended off a late-rally from the Pamboy Raymundo-led General Santos, 65-63, at the Angeles University Foundation here. Maybe it was the Volcanoes' way of apologizing to their mentor. Either way, with the victory, the LCC Stores-backed squad pushed their standing to 16-14 in the South Division. More importantly, the Volcanoes have punched their ticket to the playoffs, leaving the last playoff spot for Cebu and Batangas to fight for. “Kaya sobrang saya namin lahat na nakuha namin ‘to sa Gen San. Hindi ko naman na sila dapat pagalitan kasi alam kong kaya nila e, pinrove nila na talagang magaling silang team, magaling na players,” said Kallos. “Tingin ko yun ang naging wake-up call nila besides, wala akong pre-game talk. Nagsalita lang ako yung nararamdaman ko towards doon sa game namin, yung last game namin,” he added. Upon seeing his players regain their "killer instinct", Kallos believes that the whole squad can sustain it in time for the post-season wars. “Sabi ko sa kanila, grabe ang paniniwala ko at respeto ko sa galing ng team na ‘to kaya sabi ko kahit sinong kalaban natin kaya nating talunin. Oo, tingin ko hanggang playoffs na ‘to.” In other games, Nueva Ecija played the upset role anew, nipping playoff-bound Makati-Super Crunch, 80-74, while Pampanga got another momentum-building victory at the expense of Bacolod-Master’s Sardine, 82-65......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 2nd, 2020

An array of MPBL stars have been drafted in the PBA. Who will shine?

A passel of Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League ballers have been drafted into the PBA. These gifted young Pinoys prove that the MPBL is a worthy proving ground for the pro league. We asked a few observers of the league to give their two cents on who they think will fly in the pros, namely commentators Migs Gomez and Martin Antonio as well as league head of ops, Emmer Oreta. Both Gomez and Oreta think that Manila Frontrow Star Aris Dionisio will make the biggest splash in the pros. “Aris Dionisio is the best MPBL player in the (PBA) draft,” says Gomez. “I think his length and athleticism can translate his defensive abilities to the PBA easily. Offensively, he is also capable of running the floor and shooting threes, so converting him from center to small forward will not be a problem.” The 6 foot 5 Dionisio was nabbed by Magnolia with the 9th choice in the first round. “Aris Dionisio is a versatile player who can play a lot of positions, and can also can play off the ball,” notes Oreta. “And the most important thing is he can play defense, for sure.” “Dionisio is next in line to Marc Pingris,” adds Martin Antonio. Oreta and Gomez also agree that Mike Ayonayon will be an impact player immediately in the PBA. The 6-foot San Juan Knight is “a baller, a lengthy swingman who is very athletic and likes the open floor,” says Gomez. The former PCU Dolphin was selected third by NLEX and is etched in league lore because of his Reggie Miller-esque 12-point, two-minute outburst for San Juan that enabled the Knights to a close comeback win versus Bataan earlier in the season. Antonio believes that Ayonayon will thrive and develop under Road Warriors mentor Yeng Guiao. “Ayanayon + Guiao = Killer,” says Coach Hammer. “Yeng Guiao loves players like Mike,” adds Antonio. Gomez even gives the high-flying Antipoleno the ultimate compliment. “I came up with my signature line “Magic in the Air” because of him.” When it comes to sleeper picks and project players, the experts are split. Oreta and believes that Chris Bitoon, Dionisio's teammate in Manila, could be a surprise package. “A late pick, but for sure coach Nash Racela knows this guy well, and he can really play.” The former Manuel L. Quezon University Stallion had his number called in the third round by Blackwater Elite. Also getting drafted by Elite was Richard Escoto, who played for the Iloilo Royals, where Racela was an assistant before getting the Blackwater head coaching job. Gomez believes that Aaron Black is a worthy project for Meralco. The Zamboanga combo guard who also played for QC early in the season was corralled by the Bolts, who are coached by his father, Norman. “The pressure has always been there for Aaron to live up to his last name, but he has embraced it and blossomed in the MPBL,” explains Gomez. “He has a good relationship with his father, and with the skillset and body that he has now, I can only see him improving more and more. Aaron can play point guard and get triple-doubles.” Gomez also throws another name into the ring when it comes to project players: Yankie Haruna. The former CSB Blazer, currently with the Bacolod Master Sardines club, was drafted 9th in the second round by Magnolia. The 6 foot 2 New Jersey-native is an enticing prospect. “He’s tall enough, very athletic, and likes to penetrate with full authority. I think his body can translate into an explosive scorer in the PBA,” explains Gomez. Oreta on the other hand thinks Cris Dumapig can rise up from obscurity to become a PBA player. “He is a workhorse of a big man, for sure this kind of a player Coach Pido Jarencio really wants. I'm hoping he can sign with the team.” Dumapig was taken by NorthPort in the middle of the third round. The rebounding machine is a vital cog for a Basilan Steel Jumbo Plastic side that is third in the South Division as of the writing of this piece. Oreta also thinks another big man can make waves: Cebu Sharks – Casino Ethyl Alcohol's Will McAloney. “Coach Yeng really loves players from the south, playing physical and all-out every time,” said Oreta. The burly homegrown Cebuano was the first of NLEX's two second round selections. There are so many MPBL stalwarts who are testing the waters in the PBA, like Allyn Bulanadi, the stylish scorer taken by Alaska, and Rey Publico, the Iloilo big man also absorbed by the same PBA team. Rey Suerte of Batangas will don the colors of Blackwater after his early selection (Editor's note: Bulanadi and Suerte were selected as part of the special Gilas Draft and will focus on national team duties before suiting up in the PBA). Big names like Prince Rivero and Arvin Tolentino will also attempt to show their wares at the country's highest stage. Most if not all of these players will remain with their MPBL teams until April. Whether it's in the Liga ng Bawat Pilipino or at the PBA, we can expect tons of fireworks from this bumper crop of young Pinoy hoops talent......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 24th, 2020

MPBL: Clutch Suerte carries Batangas to victory; Pampanga clinches playoff berth

Rey Suerte showed nerves of steel, towing Batangas City-Tanduay to a tight 72-68 victory over Navotas-Unipak Sardines in the 2019-20 Chooks-to-Go/MPBL Lakan Season at the Ynares Sports Arena, Thursday. Down by two points, Suerte fired a three-pointer from the left wing before fishing a foul off Navotas’ Kojack Melegrito which led to two free throws which gave Batangas a three-point advantage, 69-66, with 1:39 left in the game. Osama Abdurasad’s lay-up with 39.4 seconds left trimmed the Athletics’ lead to one. However, Suerte once again came to Batangas’ defense, converting a trey on the same spot to push the lead back to four points, 72-68, with 16 seconds remaining. Abdurasad missed a three-pointer while Jason Melano stole the ball off a pass from Joesel Prudente to seal the deal for the Athletics. “We really need it sa standings and especially for the people of Batangas, atleast kahit papaano napa-smile namin sila. Kahit kaunti. [But] we’re still trying to figure out how to win,” said Batangas head coach Woody Co. Suerte – who scored Batangas’ last eight points – finished the game with 13 points, five assists, and four rebounds for the Athletics, who are now in a three-way logjam in the fifth spot of the South Division with Iloilo and Zamboanga, possessing identical 16-11 cards. Melano delivered 12 points, 13 rebounds, three steals, and a block while Ryusei Koga and Jeff Viernes chipped in 12 and 11 points in the victory. Mark Guillen and Elmer Cabahug, meanwhile, led Navotas with 13 points apiece. The Unipak Sardines-backed squad dropped to a 7-21 standing in the North Division. In the earlier game, San Juan-Go for Gold averted a major collapse, escaping gutsy Iloilo, 70-67. With his team down by 12 points in the final frame, IloIlo’s Rey Publico poured in five points in a crucial 12-1 blast including a putback which sliced the Knights’ lead to a solitary point, 67-68, with 59 seconds remaining in the game. The Royals then forced a shot clock violation on the defending champions which paved the way for a floater from Aaron Jeruta which, unfortunately, was blocked by Mike Ayonayon. Jhonard Clarito, who was fouled by Alfrancis Tamsi with 3.2 seconds left, drained two clutch free throws to give San Juan a three-point cushion. Publico missed a potential game-tying three-pointer with 2.4 ticks which spelled doom for IloIlo. “Sabi ko nga, a win is a win. Pero siyempre, IloIlo ‘yan. May sistema, lahat kumpleto, coaching staff, players. Bigay ko yung credit sa kanila, ready talaga sila buti na lang na-shoot ni Jhonard [Clarito] yung huli,” said San Juan head coach Randy Alcantara. Clarito pumped in 22 points, eight rebounds, and four steals for the league-leading San Juan, who now stands at 24-3 in the Northern Division – a game behind second-running Manila-Frontrow. John Wilson chipped in 12 points on a horrid 4-of-17 clip laced with eight rebounds, two steals, and two blocks. Orlan Wamar also had 12 markers while Ayonayon finished the game with 11 points, four rebounds, and three assists. Former Letran stalwart Publico finished with a double-double performance of 17 points and 10 rebounds for the 16-11 IloIlo, who is now tied with Zamboanga-Family’s Brand Sardines for the fifth spot in the South Division. Richard Escoto provided 13 points, five assists, four rebounds, and four steals while Tamsi had 10 points and four rebounds in a losing effort. In the first contest, behind the all-around brilliance of Mark Cruz, Pampanga sealed its playoff berth after handing the also-ran Rizal-Xentro Mall a 20-point beating, 90-70. The pint-sized Cruz stuffed the stat sheet with a triple-double of 10 points, 12 assists, and 10 rebounds, helping Pampanga forge a two-way tie with Bulacan in the fourth spot of the North Division with identical 18-9 win-loss cards. Already up by 12 points entering the second half, Pampanga unleashed an 18-8 rally capped off by Reil Cervantes three-pointer to chalk up its biggest lead of the ball game at 23, 58-35, in the 3:52 mark of the third period. Rizal was able to cut it to 12 via a Buenaventura Raflores three-pointer with 2:34 in the fourth frame, 67-79, but it’s the closest they could get as Raymond Binuya, Mark Cruz, and Dan Alberto slammed the doors with an 8-2 spurt. “Ang target namin is to go one game at a time, try to win as much as we can hanggang matapos kasi nag po-positioning tayo e sa positioning ngayon e. Sakin, kahit sino ang makalaban namin ang importante ay gawin namin yung part namin,” said Pampanga head coach Bong Ramos Michale Juico spearheaded the Giant Lanterns’ offensive assault with 19 points on 5-of-8 shooting from the field on top of eight rebounds and two assists while Levi Hernandez added 14 points. Rizal – who dropped to a 4-21 standing also in the North Division – was led by Kelvin Gregorio with 21 points and eight rebounds. Golden Coolers team captain Mark Benitez chipped in 10 markers and five boards. The Scores: FIRST GAME Pampanga (90) – Juico 19, Hernandez 14, Cruz 10, Cervantes 9, Maiquez 9, Baltazar 7, Binuya 7, Gomez 6, Muyang 4, Alberto 3, Acuno 2, Baltazar 0, Enriquez 0, Fabian 0, Salcedo 0 Rizal-Xentro Mall (70) – Gregorio 21, Benitez 10, Raflores 9, Hoyohoy 7, Leynes 5, Casajeros 5, Saliente 5, Bacay 3, Regalado 3, Butel 0, Raflores 0, Rosales 0 Quarterscores: 15-18, 39-27, 66-47, 90-70 SECOND GAME San Juan-Go-for-Gold (70) – Clarito 22, Wilson 12, Wamar 12, Ayonayon 11, Aquino 8, Rodriguez 4, Bunag 1, Victoria 0, Reyes 0, Isit 0, Subido 0, Estrella 0, Tajonera 0 IloIlo-United (67) – Publico 17, Escoto 13, Tamsi 10, Prado 7, Jaboneta 4, Arambulo 4, Jeruta 3, Gumaru 3, de Joya 3, Mahari 0, Rodriguez 0, Pantin 0, Racho 0 Quarterscores: 16-20, 42-33, 61-51, 70-67 THIRD GAME Batangas City-Athletics (72) – Suerte 14, Melano 12, Koga 12, Viernes 11, Olivares 7, Grimaldo 5, Santos 4, Sara 3, Tungcab 3, Bragais 2, Rogado 0 Navotas-Unipak Sardines (68) – Guillen 13, Cabahug 13, Taywan 11, Gonzales 6, Melegrito 5, Bondoc 5, Abdurasad 5, Matillano 4, Andaya 4, Bautista 2, Evangelista 0, Prudente 0 Quarterscores: 17-10, 34-31, 51-58, 72-68.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 24th, 2020