LIPA CITY—Resident pro Orlan Sumcad bucked the strong winds that bedeviled the field yesterday, firing an eagle-spiked three-under par 69 to seize a one-shot lead at the start of the ICTSI Classic at the Mt. Malarayat Golf and Country Club.
The 37-year-old Sumcad gunned down four birdies to add to his eagle on the par-5 ninth, offsetting bogeys on 4, 5 and 18 to surge ahead of the unheralded Marlon Dizon, who was a shot behind with a 70 on nines of 35.
Sumcad, still in search for his first pro title, eagled the par-5 ninth after his approach shot from 140 yards came within four feet off the cup. The eagle putt capped a stirring 33 on the front nine for the long-hitting Sumcad, who also birdied 7, 8, 12 and 14, all from inside eight feet.
“I didn’t expect a lot because the course was really hard to read today (yesterday),” said Sumcad, whose best finish was second last year to Jay Bayron at Sherwood Hills. “The wind made it difficult. The greens were fast and what used to be easy putts were difficult.”
Winds blowing from all directions made the 6,984-yard course tougher than expected and the big guns groped for form with only eight players cracking par, including rookie pro Miguel Tabuena, Tony Lascuna, Arnold Villacencio, Erwin Vinluan, Elmer Saban and amateur Zamieboy Gialon, who stood two strokes off the pace with 71s.
The 33-year-old Dizon, who saw little action last year because he was focused on his engineering firm, also eagled the ninth hole from the edge of the green aside from birdies on 14 and 16 to compensate for bogeys on 4 and 15.
Asian Tour veteran Angelo Que and Frankie Miñoza both carded even-par 72s to be in the eight-man group tied for ninth in this event sponsored by International Container Terminal Services, Inc.
That group also included Dante Becierra, Omar Dungca, Rufino Bayron, Gerald Rosales, Roberto Bernis Jr. and amateur Jobim Carlos.
No one among the big names was more miserable than Juvic Pagunsan, the winner of the Tour’s kickoff leg at Royal Northwoods last week, who virtually kissed his hopes for back-to-back crowns with an 11-over 83 for a tie at 87th place.
Bayron, last year’s Order of Merit champion and runner-up to Pagunsan last week, is also in danger of missing the 40-man cut after a six-over 78 left him in a tie of 68th place in this tournament also backed by MJ Carr Golf Management, Inc., Srixon, Callaway, Dynamic Sports, Omnisource International, Unilab, Mizuno, Titleist.The leading scores: 69—O. Sumcad (33-36); 70—M. Dizon (35-35); 71—M. Tabuena (37-34), E. Saban (37-34), T. Lascuna (36-35), E. Vinluan (35-36), A. Villacencio (34-37), Z. Gialon (34-37); 72—R. Bernis (38-34), D. Becierra (37-35), F. Miñoza (36-36), J. Carlos (36-36), O. Dungca (36-36), G. Rosales (35-37), A. Que (34-38), R. Bayron (34-38); 73—R. Sinfuego (38-35), M. Dumandan (36-37), Juan. Pagunsan (37-36), Murakami (36-37), P. Villaber (36-37), J. Ababa (35-38), D. Zarate (35-38) C. La’o (33-40); 74—E. Quiachon (38-36), R. Bisera (37-37), C. Casas (37-37), E. Arcillas (36-38), E. Rellon (35-39), R. Pactolerin (38-37)