Receiving stellar efforts from everyone on their starting six, the DLSU Green Spikers took care of their neighbors from across the street, the CSB Blazers, in four sets 25-18, 25-19, 17-25, 25-15 in the inaugural Spikers’ Turf Collegiate Conference at the FilOil Flying V Arena.
DLSU, who stuck to a steady seven-player rotation, showed vast improvements to the more unpredictable style they’ve been trying to incorporate since Ronald Dulay took the head coaching reins. Team captain Raymark Woo and fellow open hitter Arjay Onia gathered masterful 16 and 15 points respectively. Rookie middle blocker, Geriant Bell Bacon made his debut in the starting six and went off for nine points that matched Mike Frey’s output.
The Green Spikers leaned on their stellar serving throughout the entire match to bury their sister school. Their tally of seven aces do not clearly illustrate how much trouble they gave Benilde in just simply getting the first touch. La Salle jumped out to big leads in the early stages of the first two sets which CSB never recovered from.
However, the tides turned in the third set with Benilde taking charge right from the first point as they took a 4-0 lead. La Salle retaliated and cut the lead down to one, 4-3, but the Blazers easily reestablished their advantage as John Vic Se Guzman’s aerial antics quickly bolted his team back to a five-point lead, 11-6. De Guzman continued to tee-off on the DLSU defense, attacking from the back row and inflating his team’s lead to 20-10. The La Sallians tried to creep back into the set with stellar serving from Geuel Asia and Ralph Calasin that sliced the CSB lead down to five, 21-16, prompting a CSB timeout. The Blazers put the set away from there with Racmade Etrone and Isaah Arda combining for their final four points of the set.
La Salle imposed their will in the fourth set. Riding Woo’s hot-hand from the service line, La Salle broke away and took an 11-6 with a 4-0 run highlighted by consecutive Woo aces. CSB’s offense blew its final wheel with no player seemingly able to convert points consistently to quell La Salle’s advances. Coach Ronald Dulay’s squad won the final set by a season-high 10 point advantage.
After the match, Woo explained that there was a benefit to facing the team that resides just across the street from the campus. “Malaking bagay din siguro na madalas talaga kami nagpapractice together. Alam na namin ‘yung mga galaw nila, kaso nga lang naging disadvantage din namin ‘yun kasi nakapa na nila kami pagdating noong third set. Buti na lang nakapag-adjust kami nung fourth set,” said the third-year spiker.
De Guzman was the only Blazer in double figures with his game-high 20 points. His team slumped to a 2-2 record but still has a great chance at making the Top 8.
La Salle secures second place in Group B with its 3-1 slate and faces the UP Maroons on Wednesday, August 12. CSB has the undefeated Ateneo Blue Eagles next also on August 12.
DLSU (3) – Woo 16, Onia 15, Bacon 9, Frey 9, Calasin 8, Asia 1, Dimayuga 0, Dumago 0, Movido (L)
CSB (1) – De Guzman 20, Arda 9, Etrone 6, Basilan 5, Relata 5, Jordan 3, Coming 2, Deximo 1, Chua (L)
Composed Ceres-Negros expels Shan United in shootout victory
2017 AFC ASEAN Zone Champions Ceres-Negros banked on their poise and composure from the spot as they knocked out Myanmar’s Shan United via a 4-3 penalty shootout (1-1 after extra time) triumph, Tuesday evening at the Thuwunna Stadium in Yangon, Myanmar.
The Negrenses punched their ticket to Brisbane, Australia after emerging the better spotkick takers. Four Busmen were on target, while two of their Shan Warriors counterparts fluffed their lines.
The two domestic champions were inseparable after 120 minutes, with the hosts holding their own against the Philippine champions. Ceres-Negros looked the more dominant of the two teams. However, they couldn’t make the advantage count where it mattered, as they failed to breach the sturdy Shan United defense inside the first two regulation halves.
The visitors were visibly more comfortable in the first half, but with the scores staying level at the break, the less-fancied Myanmar champions eventually found their footing in the encounter. While there were several half-chances from either side to open the scoring, both defenses remained defiant en route to unwanted extra time.
“It was a tough game. We weren’t ready to play 120 minutes because we only had four training sessions before the game but everytime we wear this jersey, we represent Ceres, we represent Bacolod, we represent the Philippines, so we have to give our best,” Ceres’ defender Carli de Murga elaborated to the Inquirer after the match. The Asian Football season has yet to start, and with both teams not too busy with pre-season preparations, rust and fatigue in a demanding affair were evident.
Come extra time, Ceres-Negros took the initiative when Stephan Schröck’s deflected effort went past the helpless Thiha Si Thu just three minutes into the first half.
Nonetheless, the hosts refused to go down without a fight, and their resilience was rewarded later in the opening half. Substitute Patrick Asare found the back of the net to restore parity in Yangon.
Another 15 minutes of goalless action took place in the second half as both teams looked more cautious, perhaps with the collective aim of avoiding a costly error or two. Among all the chances, Schröck’s in the 114th minute may have proved to be the closest to changing the scores, as his attempt shaved the post.
Shan United took to the spot first, where Asare made his penalty attempt count. Nay Lin Tun also made his, but not before teammate Chizoba smashed his attempt over Toni Doblas’ goal.
While the hosts squandered a shot, the visitors remained calm in front of a hostile Myanmar crowd. De Murga, Schröck and Mike Ott nailed their turns, with Marañon also not missing a vital kick from 12 yards.
It set up William Biassi Nyakwe, the man credited with the own goal when he deflected Schröck’s opener, with the chance to prolong his team’s campaign in the AFC Champions League. Unfortunately for him, he couldn’t atone for his earlier mistake, as his attempt soared high and wide — much to the delight of the visiting team from Bacolod, the Philippines.
The reward for Ceres-Negros is a trip to Queensland, Australia, where they will seek to do one better than compatriots Global-Cebu. The 2016 Philippine champions also played against the Brisbane Roar, who dealt them a staggering 6-0 hammering this time last year. The match will be held at the Suncorp Stadium on January 23.
As for Shan United, a spot in the AFC Cup Group Stage awaits them and they may not have seen the last of Ceres-Negros just yet. If the Negrenses lose to either Brisbane Roar or Tianjin Quanjian, they will be reacquainted with the Burmese champions in Group F.
Abu Tratter plans to work his way to 2023 by continuing to do ‘the dirty work’
Abu Tratter may have missed the jersey-giving ceremony that the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas held for the 23 for 2023 cadets last Monday but he made sure to help out when the current batch needed him the most.
After helping the Marinerong Pilipino Skippers win the Sinulog Cup in Cebu a week ago, the 6-foot-7 Filipino-American did not hesitate to heed Gilas’ call, as they were undermanned for their second session in preparation for the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers.
“Actually, at first I was just shocked to see June Mar and Gabe, just to be able to be in the midst of them,” gushed the former DLSU Green Archer, who will suit-up for Marinerong Pilipino in the D-League. “I even asked them for a picture, and hopefully they’ll still give me one.
“It’s just humbling, definitely.”
However, the work has only began for Tratter. With five years to go until the 2023 FIBA World Cup, the two-time UAAP champion plans to continue to do what he does best — be the same scrapper that he is and hopefully catch the eye of Gilas’ brass.
“That’s how it is, garbage into gold. Get anything, sweep up anything and try to put it back.”
Moreover, he will continue answering the call when Gilas needs him, as he himself is learning a lot from being surrounded by the country’s topflight cagers.
Terrence Romeo invited to join Pilipinas 3×3 for World Cup
Stronger than ever
Romeo, who is currently out due to a right knee injury, has been in rehabilitation and is expected to miss the entire Philippine Cup campaign of the Globalport Batang Pier and the second window of the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers.
Romeo has plenty of 3×3 basketball experience under his belt.
The 2018 3X3 World Cup will take place from June 8-12 at the Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan.
Red Spikers extinguish Blazers for second win
Shaking off a forgettable outing against the Perpetual Help Altas last January 11, the San Beda College Red Spikers vented their ire on defending champions College of Saint Benilde Blazers in four sets, 25-15, 25-16, 23-25, 26-24, and claimed their second win of the season, Friday afternoon at the FilOil Flying V Centre.
“Sabi ng coaches kalimutan na yung talo,” shared captain Lorenze Santos of what transpired after that match.
So, in this game, the San Beda team poured on what they worked hard for to regain momentum. “Binuhos po namin lahat ng ginawa namin sa training [ngayon].”
After tight starts in all the first two sets, the Mendiola-based side pulled away to register the seemingly insurmountable 2-0 lead.
Nonetheless, summoning the heart of a champion and led by seniors Isaah Arda and Jethro Orian, the reigning champions pulled off gritty runs to snag the third set and making a tussle of the fourth.
Ultimately, Adrian Viray virtually ended the match with a vicious serve, which the Blazers failed to convert.
The prolific outside hitter finished with 17 points, 11 coming from attacks and five off blocks. Former skipper Mark Encino also registered 17 markers.
The Red Spikers (2-1) will face the Mapua University, also at 2-1, on Friday, January 19.
Orian was such a presence at the net, ending up with 20 points for the Taft-based squad.
The defending champions Blazers (2-1) will try to bounce back later that day against San Sebastian College (0-3).
SBC 3 – Viray 17, Enciso 17, Santos 11, Patenio 7, Amagan 7, Desuyo 3, Zabala 0, Genobaten 0, Manliclic 0, Casin L.
CSB 1 – Orian 20, Arda 18, Bacani 6, Basilan 4, Bautista 4, Magsino 2, Martinez 0, Garcia 0, San Miguel 0, Saldavia 0, Dy L.