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ADMU Lady Shuttlers soar after a disappointing day 1 loss, beat UST, 3 – 2.



Strong singles performances from Bianca Carlos and Patrisha Malibiran help lift ADMU over UST to give them a 1-1 overall record.

AdMU's Carlos

AdMU’s Carlos

Women’s Singles 1: Ma. Bianca Ysabel Carlos (ADMU) def. Steffie Denise Aquino (UST) 2:0
ADMU 1 – UST 0

Carlos started strong for Ateneo, getting a big start by going on an 11 – 1 run over Aquino. Aquino, unable to recover, ends up losing the set, 21 – 7. The second set started eerily similar to the first, with Carlos taking a 12 – 1 lead, and while Aquino would eventually go on a 4 point run, she would never challenge the wide gap in points. The set would end with the same score as the 1st , 21 – 7 for Carlos.

Aggregate score: Carlos 42 – Aquino 14
Total match time: 25 mins.

AdMU's Malibiran

AdMU’s Malibiran

Women’s Singles 2: Patrisha Malibiran (ADMU) def. Alrish Ann Macalino (UST) 2:0
ADMU 2 – UST 0

As if taking pointers from her teammate, Malibiran took an early 6 – 1 lead. Macalino was able to counter by scoring 3 points in a row. Malibiran would eventually take a commanding lead when she scored 4 straight to go up, 19 – 11. Macalino would make a last ditch effort to catch up, but it would prove futile as she lost, 21 – 15. The 2nd set saw Malibiran take another early lead at 5 – 2, but Macalino would make her own run to take the lead at 5 – 6. They would trade points evenly and tie the game at 11, but the Atenean would score 6 straight points to finally give her the solid lead. She would take the game 21 – 13 over Macalino.

Aggregate score: Malibiran 42 – Macalino 28
Total match time: 35 mins.

UST's Aquino and Barredo

UST’s Aquino and Barredo

Women’s Doubles 1: Steffie Denise Aquino and Patricia Barredo (UST) def. Ma. Bianca Ysabel Carlos and Janelle Gloriane De Vera (ADMU) 2:0
ADMU 2 – UST 1

The 1st doubles match would start out pretty close with Ateneo taking an early 9 – 7 lead. The UST pair would catch up by scoring 3 straight points, giving them the lead 9 – 10. They would go on and the game eventually ended up tying at 16 apiece. The duo from UST would then go on a 5 – 1 run and take the 1st set, 17 – 21. The 2nd set would be another back-and-forth affair, as both teams desperately wanted to win. UST would finally take the lead for good when they broke a 10-all tie with 3 consecutive points. Ateneo would try to rally, but they were unable to mount a strong enough offensive. They would end up fall to UST, 16 – 21.

Aggregate score: Aquino (21) Barredo (21) 42 – Carlos (18) De Vera (15) 33
Total match time: 35 mins

AdMU's Dihiansan and Magno

AdMU’s Dihiansan and Magno

Women’s Doubles 2: Janel Adrianne Dihiansan and Dia Nicole Magno (ADMU) def. Alrish Ann Macalino and Ma. Victoria Vizmonte (UST) 2:0
ADMU 3 – UST 1 (ADMU wins)

It was clear at the start of the first set that UST did not want to go down without a fight. Down down 3- 7, they fought back to tie the game at 7 apiece with 4 straight points from Vizmonte. Down 17 – 13, The FEU squad were unable to handle the pressure from their opponents in blue as they gave up 4 straight points to lose the first set, 21 – 13. Ateneo did not allow a UST comeback, as they quickly took a 7 – 4 lead that would eventually balloon to 11 points as they would outscore UST 11 – 3. UST would be unable to recover as they lose 21 – 12.
Aggregate score: Dihiansan (24) Magno (18) – Macalino (12) Vizmonte (13)
Total match time: 25 mins.

UST's Barredo

UST’s Barredo

Women’s Singles 3: Patricia Barredo (UST) def. Janelle Gloriane De Vera (ADMU) 3:2 (ADMU wins)

Despite the overall game being decided, neither side took the final match lightly. Both cheering squads were still screaming their team’s chants to motivate their schools’ final players. The first set started close with a 7 – 4 lead for Ateneo. Barredo rallied back to tie the game at 8 apiece. They would start to trade points, with De Vera taking a 1 point lead, but having Barredo tie it right after. The final tie of the set came when Barredo scored 2 in a row while she was down 15 – 13. Barredo would then score 6 straight points to stun De Vera and claim the victory, 15 – 21. De Vera started the 2nd set on fire, taking an early 8 – 3 lead, which quickly swelled to 15 – 5. Barredo would be unable to recover, and she would drop the 2nd set, 21 – 12. The final set would be similar to the 1st, as both athletes would not give the other a chance to gain a solid foothold to start the game. At the half, the score was tied at 11 each, but De Vera was able to capitalize on Barredo’s errors, as she jumped to a 17 – 11 lead for 6 straight points. Unfortunately for De Vera, she would only score 2 more points for the whole set, as Barredo would barrage her on a 10 – 2 run, defeating De Vera, 19 – 21.

Aggregate score: Barredo (54) – De Vera (55
Total match time: 40 mins

Aggregate sets won: ADMU 7 – UST 4

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Calvin Abueva rejuvenated with return of physical play: ‘Masarap maglaro’



Photo by PBA Images

For Calvin Abueva, it feels great to play in the PBA nowadays.

The Beast, who has always been known as one of the league’s most physical players since entering in 2012, was all praises for the way the officiating has changed this 43rd season — by just letting all the players play.

“Mas gumanda yung tawagan ngayon, naging physical nga. Naging exciting para sa mga tao, mas marami na nanonood ngayon eh,” said Abueva moments after their 97-83 victory over the Barangay Ginebra San Miguel, Sunday night.

As has been said many times, physicality had become something controlled over the last two years. Abueva knows it too well, having been a casualty, as he has paid a bevy of penalties during that time.

And now that it is a thing of the past, the 6-foot-2 bruiser feels much better, knowing that he can display his brand of basketball once more.

“Masarap maglaro, talagang pisikalan,” said the 29-year-old forward from Angeles, Pampanga. “Siyempre makikita naman natin kung sinasadya o hindi, basta katawan lang.

“Pisikal. Yun yung magandang laro di ba?”

Aside from the comeback of physicality, what makes Abueva beam even more is the way the Aces have been playing in the 2018 Philippine Cup. After a 0-2 start in the tourney, they have now booked their third straight win.

“Nung 2017 parang nilubog na namin yung losing streak namin doon. Ito 2018 na at panibagong destination na naman yung ina-ano namin,” said Abueva, who had nine points, nine rebounds, and five assists against Ginebra.

“Sustain muna namin ‘to… Sana magtuloy-tuloy ‘tong winning streak namin.”

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Alaska takes advantage of Greg Slaughter’s absence



For the streaking Alaska Aces, their stunning 97-83 victory over the favored Barangay Ginebra San Miguel on Sunday night was partly made possible by the absence of one key player: seven-foot behemoth Greg Slaughter.

The 28-year-old center, who was averaging 20.67 points and 10.3 rebounds prior to Sunday, did not play against the Aces due to a hamstring injury. How he incurred the injury has yet to be determined.

“There’s a small person named Greg Slaughter who didn’t play; I think he has an impact on the game,” quipped coach Alex Compton after the match.

“[They missed] a guy who I think is gonna win an MVP soon in Greg Slaughter.

“Sometimes dito sa liga natin, you have to take advantage when opportunities come your way. You don’t want anybody to get hurt [though],” added Compton.

With Slaughter out of the way, the Aces’ big men feasted.

Vic Manuel top-billed with 18 points and five rebounds, and elder statesman Sonny Thoss turned back the clock with a 17-point, four-rebound outing.

“Malaking bonus na rin sa amin, kasi wala nga si Greg kaya nakuha namin yung panalo,” said Manuel.

“Yeah it definitely helped,” added the six-foot-seven Thoss, who shot 6-of-12 from the floor and made four of his freebies.

“He’s a big guy, he’s a big presence inside so it took one big guy off our shoulder.”

Slaughter was approached and asked by scribes regarding his injury, but he was not in the mood to comment. No one can blame him, though, since the Barangay have slipped to their second straight defeat after a 2-0 start.

“I’m always there in practice, going over our gameplans. But it’s better if you ask our PT,” he said.

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Alaska completes turnaround at Greg Slaughter-less Ginebra’s expense



Photo by PBA Images

A strong second half surge was all the Alaska Aces needed to turn back the heavily-favored Barangay Ginebra San Miguel, 97-83, and book their third straight victory, Sunday night at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City.

The Aces, who have yet to lose this 2018, have now improved to 3-2. Meanwhile, the Barangay absorbed their second straight loss and have dropped to 2-2.

“I was telling the guys na parang ang dami nating iniisip, hindi natin ginagawa yung ginagawa natin noong nakaraang dalawang linggo. Sabi ko relax lang tayo,” said coach Alex Compton, sharing what he told his wards that sparked the win.

Vic Manuel led the Milkmen with 18 points and five rebounds. Sonny Thoss turned back the clock as he made 17 markers on 6-of-12 shooting, while Chris Banchero supplied 14 points, six assists, and five rebounds.

The Aces were trailing by eight, 36-44 at the half, but it became a different ball game come the third chapter as they outscored the Gin Kings, 37 to 19, to erect a favorable 73-63 cushion heading into the game’s final 12 minutes.

From there, Alaska kept their foot on the gas to sustain their lead, which grew to as much as 18, 85-67, after their 6-0 spree — punctuated by Banchero’s lay-up plus a foul — with 6:14 remaining in the final frame.

Ginebra still tried to make one last push as they inched within 10, 75-85, but baskets by Thoss and Kevin Racal propelled Alaska to an 89-75 lead with 3:42 left to play — more than enough to knock out their counterparts.

“I was glad to come away with the win,” added Compton. “Sometimes, we have to take advantage of opportunities coming your way. You don’t want anybody to get hurt but when two number one picks on the other team aren’t playing… There.”

Jvee Casio had 13 markers for Alaska, while Calvin Abueva nearly had a double-double of nine points and nine boards along with five assists in 20 minutes.

Aljon Mariano had 15 points, nine rebounds, and three dimes for Ginebra, who — despite having Sol Mercado back in the fold after ankle issues — missed the services of Joe Devance and Greg Slaughter due to injuries.

Japeth Aguilar, Scottie Thompson, and Kevin Ferrer each scored 12 for the Barangay, with Thompson adding five assists. The trio combined for 15 of Ginebra’s 43 rebounds.

Alaska will aim to extend their streak versus the Blackwater Elite on Saturday, January 27 at 4:30 PM, while Ginebra will look to end their slump against the Phoenix Fuel Masters on Friday, January 26 at 7:00 PM. Both games are at SMART Araneta Coliseum.

The Scores:

Alaska 97 — Manuel 18, Thoss 17, Banchero 14, Casio 13, Abueva 9, Teng 9, Cruz 5, Enciso 3, Potts 3, Exciminiano 2, Magat 2, Racal 2, J. Pascual 0.

Ginebra 83 — Mariano 15, J. Aguilar 12, Ferrer 12, Thompson 12, Caguioa 8, Cruz 8, R. Aguilar 5, Tenorio 5, Mercado 2, Taha 2, Wilson 2, Jamito 0.

Quarterscores: 26-23, 36-44, 73-63, 97-83.

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Frustrated Jared Dillinger admits ‘he’s getting sick’ of Meralco’s bad PH Cup runs



It’s no secret that the Meralco Bolts have struggled in the Philippine Cup for the last three years. During the last two seasons, the eight-year-old franchise’s win-loss tally is four wins and 18 losses.

And in the 2018 edition, the narrative has been the same, with little to no hope of it turning the other way around.

The Bolts bowed to the TNT Katropa, 99-81, Sunday night — their third straight defeat after winning over Blackwater Elite in their opener last December. If things continue as they are, it looks like another poor all-Filipino tilt run is looming.

“We’re 1-3 and there’s nothing to be happy about,” said Jared Dillinger, who had 14 points and five caroms in the match at Ynares Center in Antipolo. “It’s a long season though… We [shouldn’t] panic but it’s not fun right now.

“The Philippine Cup has been our Achilles heel and every damn Philippine Cup we get our ass kicked. I’m getting sick of it.”

In this game, Meralco missed the services of top forwards Ranidel De Ocampo and Cliff Hodge due to injuries. But for Dillinger, those issues shouldn’t be excuses.

“When you get two guys like Ranidel and Cliff out, as a team, that’s the opportunity for the guys below them to step up,” asserted Dillinger, who has been with the franchise since 2013.

“It doesn’t have to mean scoring, getting the assists or rebound, it’s just making the right play, being smart.”

Asked what went wrong in this particular loss versus their sister team, where they shot just 39.2 percent from the floor and had committed 17 turnovers, the 10-year veteran lamented the poor effort that the Bolts put up.

“TNT didn’t do anything much, given that they played well. But they didn’t have any secret schemes against us. They just passed the ball around, and they got open shots,” added the 10-year pro, as TNT made 23 assists and shot 18 triples.

“Our effort wasn’t there. We got to put up the intensity cause it sucks right now.”

Meralco have a chance to end their slump against the Kia Picanto this Wednesday. Dillinger sees it as a do-or-die affair, warning that it will be a grind-out affair knowing that the Picanto is coming off a skid-ending win over Rain or Shine.

Do-or-die ’cause that’s gonna be a playoff game. Thank God they beat Rain or Shine ’cause you don’t want to be that one team that gives the win to a 0-16 [team]. You don’t want to play teams like that,” stressed the all-around forward.

“Nothing to take away from Kia though. It’s gonna be tough.”

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