April 17, 2011

Sumcad shows way: Malarayat pro’s 69 holds off ICTSI Classic faves

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)

Source: Inquirer.net

Pint-sized Gamboa big for UP Maroons

MANILA—A towering Nigerian debuted for the University of the Philippines, but it’s the diminutive Mike Gamboa who bailed out the Maroons past Letran, 65-63, yesterday in the 2011 FilOil-Flying V Hanes Preseason Premier Cup.

The 5-foot-6 Gamboa knocked in the game-winning triple from the left corner with just 33.1 seconds left as the Maroons picked up their first victory in the second of a three-game bill at the FilOil-Flying V Arena in San Juan.

Winless in last year’s UAAP campaign, the Maroons beefed up their frontline with Alinko Mbah, a 6-foot-7 Nigerian recruit who wound up a rebound-shy of a double-double with 10 points and nine boards.

University of the East also pulled off a thriller in the final match, completing a terrific comeback from 13 points down in the last four minutes for a 79-78 escape against Jose Rizal University.

Lucas Tagarda completed a three-point play with 7.8 ticks left to cap the Warriors’ 16-2 run from a 63-76 deficit.

Ken Acibar paced the Warriors with 22 points, while JM Noble and Chris Javier combined for 23 markers.

“JRU’s offense is very potent, but I told the team to just hang in there,” said new UE coach Jerry Codiñera.

Earlier, Allan Mangahas came through with an all-around game to lift Mapua to an 82-75 win over St. Benilde.

Mangahas collected 15 points, 14 rebounds, eight assists and two steals to lead five players who finished in double figures for the Cardinals.

“I’m pleased with what I saw, especially in the last five minutes,” said new coach Ricky Dandan after the Maroons spoiled the Knights’ bid for a second straight victory.

The Senior scores:
Second Game
UP 65—Silungan 13, Gomez 12, Mbah 10, Maniego 8, Gamboa 6, Manuel 6, Romero 5, Juruena 3, Montecastro 2, Gingerich 0, Wong 0, Weirzba 0.
LETRAN 63—Racal 14, Alas K. 11, Belorio 10, Cortes 9, Cruz 6, Alas J. 6, Taplah 4, Espiritu 3, Mendoza 0, Pantin 0, Gabriel 0.
Quarters: 15-14, 38-31, 49-52, 65-63
Third Game
UE 79—Acibar 22, Noble 12, Javier 11, Zamar 9, Zosa 7, Tagarda 7, Kamguia 5, Duran 3, Casajeros 2, Santos 1, Sumido 0, Villarias 0, Enguio 0, Razon 0.
JRU 78—Almario 14, Villarias 14, Matute 11, Lopez 10, Kabigting 10, Apinan 8, Monserat 6, Montemayor 4, Mendoza 1, Paniamogan 0, Dizon 0, Carampil 0, Dela Paz 0, Gaco 0.
Quarters: 14-18, 31-40, 55-56, 79-78

Source: Inquirer.net

PBA All-Star Weekend goes to Boracay

Carlo Quevada was brimming with enthusiasm as he ticked off the long list of events that will highlight this year’s PBA All-Star Week in Boracay.
 “This year, it will be different. We’re not going to have just the usual All-Star ingredients. There will be much, much more,” he said, showing me the five-page calendar of activities from May 18 to 22.
Carlo is the alternate governor of Rain or Shine team and is also president/CEO of the newly formed Crea8 Events Asia, the outfit that will promote the All-Stars in Boracay.
     * * *
The week would be a very busy one for the PBA stars: Autograph signing, photo-ops, motorcade a welcome dinner at Puka beach on arrival; coastal cleanup, basketball court painting, tree planting and hospital visits and gift-giving on the morning of the second day. The rest of the day is reserved for practice games and beach games which include a hug-of-war, three-on-three volleyball and a contest in sand castle-making.
 “Don’t you mean ‘tug of war’ instead of ‘hug-of-war?’” I asked Carlo, thinking that there might have been a typographical error in the document.
 He said there was no error.  “It is an improvised version of the tug of war where we dispense with the rope and the opposing teams hug each other to  stay connected .
 Carlo said that candidates of the Mutya ng Pilipinas contest which Cre8 Events Asia is also organizing,  will participate in the beach games.
 A player and a Mutya candidate will alternate in the hug of war.
 A mix of players and Mutya beauties will also model beachwear in a fashion show that will precede dinner on the second day.
    * * *
 “The whole event will be known as ‘Hala Bola’. ‘Hala Bora’ would have been more appropriate, but Boracay mayor John Yap said people might be misled because there’s also a  Bora-Bora in the island,” Carlo said.
 “Mayor Yap and Mayor Fil Tandog of Carabao Island, venue of several All-Star activities, have been most supportive. They’re doing everything to make the Boracay All-Stars a big success and a most memorable event.”
 On the morning  of Friday, May 20, the PBA will hold an outreach clinic for the indigenous community of the island. The All-Star competitions which include the three-point shootout,  the obstacle challenge, the slam dunk contest and the rookies-sophomores blitz game will be staged starting at 5:30 p.m. An awarding ceremony immediately follows.
  “On Saturday, May 21, we will have our own version of the reality show  ‘Amazing Race,’ where PBA stars and Mutya beauties will participate. This will be a whole day affair,” said Carlo.
 The highlight of the five-day affair, the North versus South All-Star game will be staged on the last day, Sunday.
 “There will be a lot of ferrying from one place to another so prepare to be immersed in water,” Carlo warned.
 Last year the All-Star week was held in Puerto Princesa with Mayor Ed Hagedorn playing the perfect host.
 The event was simple but successful.
 With the more elaborate and ostentatious preparations in Boracay, I told Carlo I expect the All-Star to be even more successful this year. 

Source: Inquirer.net

March 29, 2011

Pacquiao Begins Sparring, Works On His Timing

MANILA, Philippines – World welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao started sparring at the Shape up Boxing Gym in Baguio City on Tuesday, focusing on the timing of his punches for his May 7 title defense against Shane Mosley.

According to a Philboxing.com report by Eddie Alinea, the reigning World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight king spent 4 rounds of sparring against training partners, Shawn Porter and David Rodela (2 rounds each).

His trainer, Freddie Roach, said Pacquiao’s timing is not yet perfect which is just natural for a boxer coming off a break.

“He’s not 100% okay yet, especially in his timing,” Roach said. “He’s a little bit cautious with his moves, but that’s understandable. I can see him improving a lot before we leave for Los Angeles on Saturday.”

The training session included a 6-round mitt work and several rounds with the heavy bag, double end bag, speed ball and conditioning work.

Pacquiao’s conditioning coach said Tuesday’s session was a testament of the Filipino’s willingness to undergo hard training.

“Actually, what he did today was what he requested. He did not need the big bag, but he wanted that. And so were the double end and the speed ball. That only meant one thing, he’s serious in whatever he wants to do in training,” Ariza added.

Pacquiao said he needs to recover from his down time from boxing, hence, the hard work.

The last time Pacquiao fought was when he clobbered Mexico’s Antonio Margarito on Nov. 14 to win his 8th world title, the World Boxing Council (WBC) junior middleweight title.

Well, kailangan talaga bigay-todo sa ensayo, marami tayong dapat ma-recover matapos ang mahabang pahinga mula noong laban ko okay (Antonio) Margarito (I have to be all-out in training, I have to recover from my break since the Margarito fight),” Pacquiao said.

Pacquiao admitted that he still has to fine tune his timing. He, however, assured his fans that there is still time for him to make adjustments.

“Tama si Freddie nangangapa pa ako sa timing ng suntok. Di ko maibigay agad kahit gusto ko. Ma-adjust naman agad ‘yun (Freddie is right, I’m still coping with my timing. I’m still holding back. But it can still be adjusted),” he said.

Porter and Rodela said Pacquiao’s still has this attitude of mixing it up with his opponents.

“He still possesses the power and speed like before,” said Porter. “I challenged him to toe-to-toe and he accepted the dare. He amazed me as usual.”

“Yeah, same with me. I wanted to mix it up with him and he obliged,” Rodela said, for his part.

Source: ABS-CBN

Volleyball Referee Course To Be Staged In PHILSCA

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine Volleyball Federation (PVF) will hold this year's volleyball referee course at the Philippine State College of Aeronautics (PhilSCA), in Villamor Base, Pasay City on April 11-15, 2011.

The National Volleyball Referee Course Accreditation course aims to educate participants through a series of lectures, discussions, and examinations on volleyball for participants.

For this year, the PVF will be calling 60 participants and will be reserving slots through a first-come-first-served basis.

The registration fee of P4,200 per person will cover expenses including a PVF License, 5-day lunch and snacks, and handbooks or handouts.

The PhilSCA AeroTel will receive accommodation at P2,000 for 6 days per person.

The PVF is asking interested participants to bring their playing attire: playing shirts, jogging pants and or short pants, T-shirt, and rubber shoes.

For inquires and reservation you may call the PVF office via their telefax number at +63 526 8438 and e-mail address pvf_flyvl2yahoo.com.

You may also call Ms. Gigi Abalos-Manaog of the PHILSCA Philippine State College of Aeronautics, Villamor Air Base, Pasay City via landline (02) 347 8004; via movile phone--09087295793 (Smart), 09228884508 (Sun), 09158784158 (Globe); or via email manaoggigi@yahoo.com. – By Marlon Bernardino

Source: ABS-CBN

March 16, 2011

Thai Golfers Grab Lead By 3 Shots in Montecillo Team Championship

LIPA CITY, Batangas, Philippines—Thailand, playing steadily, grabbed the lead from host Philippines by three shots after the penultimate round of the Montecillo Junior golf team championship on Thursday, at the wind-swept Mt. Malarayat course here.

The Thais assembled a three-man score of 4-over par 220 for a 54-hole total of 657 while the Filipinos submitted their worst output of 225 and lost their two-stroke overnight lead to trail at 660.

Rattanon Wannasrichan and Natipong Srithong carded 73s and Sompard Rattanasuwan added a 74 for the Thais in the four-to-play, three-to-count format.

With their balanced scoring, the Thais’ top player, Poom Saksansin, did not count with his 75, which was the second-best score for the round by the Filipinos courtesy of Miguel Tabuena.

Jobim Carlos, who broke par in the first two days for Philippine Team I, settled for a 74 this time although he continued to lead the individual race by five shots with a 213 total.

Reigning national amateur champion Clyde Mondilla completed the scoring for the Filipinos with a 76 as Angelo Gandionco carded a 78.

“I’ll try to catch up because our team is down,” said Carlos, winner of the 2009 Faldo Series Philippines Championship. “Team effort is the key (to victory tomorrow).”

“You just can’t give up because this is a team event and every shot counts,” said the 16-year-old Tabuena, the Asian Games silver medalist who is poised to become the youngest Filipino pro ever after this tournament honoring the late Amalia “Mommy” Montecillo, prime mover of the jungolf movement in Asia.

In girls’ play, Philippines Team I continued to hold sway behind the 75s of Andrea Unson and Sarah Jane Ababa.

Counting their opening 148, Team I had an aggregate of 298, six shots up on Thailand, which gained a stroke on the Filipinos with Pinrath Loomboonruang scoring a 74 and Pavarisa Yoktuan contribubuting a 75 in the three-to-play, two-to-count format.

Philippines Team 2, drawing 77s from Princess Superal and Daniella Uy, was threatening the Thais at 305.
Unson and Ababa also paced the girls’ individual race with 148 and 150, respectively, two strokes ahead of Loomboonruang, Yoktuan and Superal.

The 18-year-old Carlos birdied the ninth for a 35 coming out. But he dropped four strokes on the back nine against a birdie on the 17th.

Though he’s five shots up on Wannasrichan (218), seven up on Saksansin (220) and eight up on compatriot Tabuena, Carlos said he saw victory for Philippine Team 1 as more important than the individual title.

Undaunted by a fat 39 at the front, Tabuena rallied to cap his round with back-to-back birdies.

After two days of rains, the sun finally shone, but the winds got even stronger, wreaking havoc on the scoring.
Only Kenneth Kano of Philippines Team 2 was able to break par with a 1-under 71 as he atoned for his disqualification in the second round when he failed to sign his card.

Team 2 also got a 77 from Rupert Zaragoza and a 78 from JP De Claro for a 226 effort that lifted the second PH team within six shots of the third-running Singapore squad, which had a 688 total.

Chinese-Taipei was at 724 while Guam hogged the cellar at 748.

The tournament, recognized by the Royal and Ancient Course of St. Andrews, Scotland, is being supported by ICTSI, Pancake House, Sizzling Pepper, Teriyaki Boy, Chevrolet, Pal, Friends of Jungolf, Golf Depot, San Miguel Corp., Coca-Cola, Duty-Free, Pacsports, MJ Car Golf Management, Pisanti Golf, livescoresph.com, McDonalds, Julie’s Bakeshop and Eyeshields with Inquirer Golf and a Round of Golf as media partners.

Jungolf Golf Foundation of the Philippines president Luigi Tabuena and chairman Gerry Handog are the prime movers in the country’s biggest team event since the 1996 World Amateurs.

The scores:
Boys’ Division
657--Thailand (222-215-220)); 660--PH Team 1 (222-213-225); 688--Singapore (235-229-224); 694--PH Team 2 (232-236-226); 724--Chinese-Taipei (246-237-241); 748--Guam (256-246-246)
Girls’ Division
298--PH Team 1 (148-150); 304--Thailand (155-149); 305--PH Team 2 (151-154); 323--Chinese-Taipei (164-159); 326--Singapore (162-164)

Source: Inquirer.net

Azkals Advance Due to 1 Goal in AFC Qualifier vs Mongolians

ULAN BATOR—The dream start nearly ended in a nightmare for the Philippines in this freezing Mongolian capital.

Playing in conditions it had never experienced before, the Philippine Azkals banged in an early goal only to struggle the rest of the way as Mongolia scored a 2-1 upset in the second leg of their Asian Football Confederation Challenge Cup pre-qualifying match on Tuesday at the Mongolian Football Federation field.

But the 2-nil scoreline from the first leg in Bacolod in February and James Younghusband’s fourth-minute strike on Tuesday proved enough to propel the Azkals to the group qualifying tournament in Myanmar starting March 21.

The Azkals will play against Myanmar, Bangladesh and Palestine in Rangoon with the top two squads moving to the main tournament in 2012.

With three players from their regular starting 11 missing the match for various reasons, the Azkals groped for form in a game that was played in temperatures ranging from minus-5 to minus-7 degree Celsius.

It took only four minutes for the Azkals to unlock the Mongolian defense as Chieffy Caligdong, who had blasted the first goal in the first leg, beat two defenders on the left flank, before firing his shot straight at Tseveensuren Ganbayar, who spilled the ball.

Younghusband was quickest to react to the confusion and he tucked in the rebound.

Phil Younghusband nearly doubled the lead two minutes later when his curling shot from just outside the box went inches wide of the right upright with the Mongolian keeper already beaten.

“I think we played just 60 percent to our potential,” said Azkals’ German coach Hans Michael Weiss.

“The performance of the team should also be judged based on the harsh conditions here. It’s difficult when there’s a 50 degree difference in the weather you are used to playing in.”

Philippine Football Federation president Mariano “Nonong” Araneta, who watched the match from the VIP box, near where Mongolian President Elbegdorj Tsakhia sat, said the Azkals should be lauded for hanging tough.

“I’m happy because we progressed to Myanmar, and I think that’s the most important thing,” said Araneta.

His sentiment was shared by team manager Dan Palami.

“We would have wanted to win the game,” Palami said. “But to have survived under these conditions, we should congratulate our boys. We must now focus on the group stage in Myanmar.”

“Definitely, the conditions took a toll on us,” said skipper Aly Borromeo. “Our reaction time was a split second later.”

That split second proved critical when Mongolia equalized in the 22nd minute through skipper Lumbengarav Donorov, who appeared to be in an offside position, pounced on some slack defending.

Growing in confidence and dominating the midfield battle, the Mongolians grabbed the lead in the 36th minute when Bayasgalan Garidamagnai followed up his saved penalty with a strong close-range strike.

It was another mental lapse that led to the penalty as Tsedenbal Norjmoo beat Jason Sabio to the ball, before the Filipino pulled him down just inside the area.

Korean referee Jin Ko-hyung was quick to point to the penalty spot, and although Azkals stand-in keeper Eduard Sacapano guessed right to save the spot kick, he was helpless when Garidamagnai bundled home the rebound.

Apart from the marauding Mongolians, there was more concern for the Azkals when Phil Younghusband limped off in the 65th minute because of a suspected right hamstring tear.

With Borromeo patrolling central defense, the Azkals weathered wave after wave of attack in the second half.
Ray Jonsson played brilliantly to disrupt Mongolia’s midfield play, despite arriving here around midnight on Tuesday.

“For me, Ray is our man of the match,” said Weiss of the Fil-Icelandic standout, who was moved to play the defensive midfield role after playing leftback in the second half of the first leg.

Weiss dedicated the match to the victims of the earthquake in Japan, where the Azkals trained for a week before the duel.

Source: Inquirer.net

March 15, 2011

Foreign Opponents for PINOY PRIDE 4 arrive in Cebu

Cebu City – Rosendo Vega of Mexico, Francis Miyeyusho of Tanzania, Steve Claggett of Canada, Kenichi Yamaguchi of Japan and Jemmy Gobel of Indonesia met the Cebu Sports Press Corps during a noontime presscon held at the MOOON Café at the I.T. Park in Lahug. Vega, together with trainer Herminio Vega Ramirez, vowed to win by knockout or decision and said that he is fighting for Mexico. “Milan Melindo has never fought someone with my style. I will go forward and rough him up. I am prepared to go ten rounds.” Vega said. Vega and Melindo will fight for ten rounds in the main event of PINOY PRIDE 4: PHILIPPINES VS THE WORLD this March 19 at the Waterfront Cebu City Hotel. 

Miyeyusho said he has trained hard for AJ Banal. “I trained for two months. I am ready for him.” Together with trainer Emmanuel Mlundwa, they said not to worry and were confident about their chances. Banal and Miyeyusho will fight as the co-main event for Banal’s WBO Asia-Pacific bantamweight crown.

Kenichi Yamaguchi, who will fight Marjohn Yap, said that his hometown of Osaka is far from the northeast coast that was hit by a devastating earthquake and tsunami. Yamaguchi said that he is dedicating his fight to the Japanese people.

Undefeated Canadian prospect Steve Claggett said he is happy to be here in the Philippines. He plans to win fans and fight here again. He will be facing RP number two jr.welterweight Romeo Jakosalem. His trainer is a Filipino born and raised in Canada Eric Eugene de Guzman. De Guzman said that his parents are from Manila and go back to Palawan regularly. He actually speaks some Tagalog. “I’m surprised they left this country. The people are friendly and the food is great.” His parents as well as the parents of Claggett also attended the press conference.

Gobel and trainer Errol Harold van Room also stated that they are ready for Rocky Fuentes. Cebu boxing fans can get to size up the five foreign boxers when they will have a public workout this Wednesday March 19 at the Parkmall in Mandaue City at 5 PM.

Top photo (L-R): Kenichi Yamaguchi of Japan, Steve Claggett of Canada, Rosendo Vega of Mexico, Francis Miyeyusho of Tanzania and Jemmy Gobel of Indonesia pose during the press conference held at the Mooon Cafe at IT Park in Lahug, Cebu City.

Source:  Philboxing

Revenge will be Mexican Vega’s main mission in Pinoy Pride 4

TO BEAT Milan Melindo and avenge his compatriots’ loss to Filipino boxers in recent fights.

These are the main goals of Mexican warrior Rosendo “El Matador” Vega when he battles Filipino Milan “Metodico” Melindo Satureday night in the co-main event of the Pinoy Pride 4: Philippines Versus the World at the Waterfront Hotel and Casino in Lahug.

Vega, who vowed to avenge the recent loss of countryman Fernando Montiel to Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire, will arrive today along with the other foreign fighters seeing action in the blockbuster card including Francis Miyeyusho of Tanzania, Africa; Canadian Steve Clagget, Kenichi Yamaguchi of Japan and Jemmy Gobel of Indonesia.

They will face the local media for a press conference at the Mooon Cafe in the Walk of the Asiatown IT Park, Lahug.

Vega (16 wins with 11 knockouts and six losses), who lost a close 10-round decision to WBA flyweight world champion Daiki Kameda of Japan, has the arsenals to derail the world title aspiration of the cat-quick Melindo.

Melindo is gunning for an impressive win to be named the mandatory challenger to IBF flyweight champion Moruti Mthelane.

ALA Promotions president Michael Aldeguer warns that “Melindo is not taking this fight lightly. He has trained just as hard – maybe even harder than when he fought former IBF world champion Carlos Tamara.” Aldeguer added, “He has everything to lose including a probable world title shot this year if he fails to hurdle this fight.”

When asked to assess his coming fight with Vega, the undefeated 21-year-old Melindo quipped, “Vega will not know what will hit him. My training for this fight is primarily focused on power, I will be much stronger for this fight than ever before.”

The highly world-rated Melindo is one of the most talented wards of the famed ALA Promotions and has fought and beaten some world-class fighters like former world champions Carlos Tamara and Muhammad Rachman, world title challenger Carlos Melo of Panama, Guadalupe Martinez, former WBC Youth Intercontinental champion Anthony Villareal of the USA and the OPBF No. 2 contender Jin Man Jeon of Korea.

Source: Inquirer.net

March 12, 2011

Smart, Alaska Slip Past Foes

MANILA—Smart Gilas Pilipinas survived another endgame meltdown to nip Air21, 102-99, and stay unbeaten in the PBA Commissioner Cup last night at the Cuneta Astrodome.
Marcus Douthit banged in 30 points and pulled down 18 boards with his short jumper inside two minutes eventually sending the Nationals on their way to a third straight win.
“We showed character in winning all of these games. To develop toughness, it’s the reason why we're here,” said Smart Gilas coach Rajko Toroman.
Alaska, on the other hand, squandered a 16-point lead before pulling off a 96-94 victory over San Miguel Beer in the other game.
San Miguel import David Young missed a triple at the buzzer, allowing the Aces to escape with the win, their third in four games.
The Beermen fell to 1-2 in a tie with idle Barangay Ginebra.
Alpha Bangura led a ferocious rally from 11 points down that lifted the Express within 96-97 before Douthit bailed Smart Gilas out.
Bangura, who replaced Jeremy Robinson, had 10 of the Express’ 14 points in that run but successive errors led them to their third straight defeat in four games.
The former St. John University alum turned it over thrice, paving the way for Dylan Ababou to seal the triumph with two free throws, 2.7 seconds left.
JR Reyes then blew a desperation three as time expired.
The scores:
First Game
SMART GILAS 102—Douthit 30, Lassiter 22, Ramos 16, Aguilar 11, Barroca 10, Lutz 4, Ababou 4, Casio 3, Tiu 2, Slaughter 0.
AIR21 99—Bangura 27, Reyes 23, Hontiveros 13, Pena 12, Seigle 8, Juntilla 6, Najorda 4, Arboleda 4, Urbiztondo 2, Sharma 0, Artadi 0, Avenido 0.
Quarters: 22-23, 52-46, 78-74, 102-99
Second Game
ALASKA 96—Williams 24, De Vance 22, Tenorio 20, Thoss 9, Baguio 9, Custodio 6, Dela Cruz 4, Borboran 2, Eman 0, Cablay 0.
SAN MIGUEL BEER 94—Young 35, Washington 24, Al-Hussaini 17, Santos 12, Baclao 4, Ildefonso 2, Guevarra 0, Yeo 0, Hubalde 0, Miranda 0, Cabagnot 0, Salvacion 0, Tugade 0.
Quarters: 25-23, 44-36, 74-69, 96-94
Source: Inquirer.net

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