Connect with us
[adinserter block="13"] [adinserter block="3"]

Mojica drops 30 as EAC reasserts mastery of Perpetual, takes top seed

Published

on

After denying the same team an outright Finals berth just four days ago, the Emilio Aguinaldo College Generals again thwarted the University of Perpetual Help DALTA Altas, this time for the top seed in the NCAA Final Four in a 21-25 25-20 25-17 25-19 victory Tuesday afternoon at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan City.

Not wanting to suffer the same fate as their previous meeting, the Altas rose to an early lead off hits from Rey Taneo Jr. and errors from the Generals. Reception woes continued to hunt the reigning titlists as Perpetual built a huge 10-3 advantage, forcing EAC Head Coach Rod Palmero to call for time. The Taft-based squad got some boost from timely attacks from last year’s Most Valuable Player Howard Mojica and Hariel Doguna. Nonetheless, the Altas finished off the set, aided by the miscues from the opponents, 25-21.

EAC then turned to their game plan of starting off their offense from the service area. Initially, Perpetual had problems with their reception and the Generals snatched a wide margin at 11-4. In an earlier play, Perpetual’s Team Captain Bonjomar Castel went down on a possible ankle injury. Altas’ Head Coach Sammy Acaylar then dug deep into his bench and got some quality minutes from Ismail Kasim and Barry Ytorzaita. The two substitutes kept Perpetual in the game; however, the Generals slowly pulled away and took the second set and levelled the match, 25-20.

It was a tight match in the third set until the Generals seized control of the match with three straight spikes from Israel Encina, Cedrix Rasing, and Mojica. From there Generals never looked back, even as the Altas got some points off Middle Hitter Manuel Doliente. Hariel Doguna finished off the set with two consecutive points, 25-17.

The Generals then continued to dominate the competition and mounted another huge 10-4 lead. Perpetual tried to keep it close with Kasim providing the energy and powerful hits. However, EAC slowly built comfortable margins and shook off a comeback attempt by the Altas led by its middle hitters Doliente and Ramos. The defending champions then secured the top spot as Rasing finished the match with a quick hit, 25-19.

After the match, EAC Head Coach Palmero expressed that they made slight changes in their game plan for this playoff match. The mentor emphasized that the team focused on service to fire off their offense. “Dun talaga ko nagfocus ngayon, mahirap na service para sa kalaban. Yun yung natutunan ko sa dumating na international coach ng Japan,” he said. Palmero believed that his team gets overconfident at times, leading to some errors on their part. “Medyo gigil yung players ko, medyo kumpiyansa,” he added.

For his part, Perpetual’s Acaylar felt that the morale of his players went down with the loss of Castel on the floor. However, when asked of Castel’s situation, the coach said, “He’s OK, hindi naman siya masyadong nagswell,” he said. The seasoned coach was proud of the players like Kasim and Ramos who stepped up in this game. “Exposure yung binigay ko,” he finished.

The Scores:

EAC (3) – Mojica 30, Doguna 11, Melliza 10, Encina 10, Rasing 6, Bihag 1, Barbuco 0, Gorospe (L).
UPHSD (1) – Doliente 10, Ramos 10, Rel. Taneo 7, Kasim 5, Castel 5, Ytorzaita 2, Catipay 1, Rey Taneo 1, Abcede 0, Kalingking (L), Baroy (L).

Advertisements

Grew to appreciate various sports from tennis to judo. True-maroon kiddo since the new millennium. Fanboy. Singer. Occasional sports writer.

Advertisement
Click to comment

Mixed Martial Arts

Rene Catalan continues rampage with TKO win

Published

on

Rene Catalan continues to turn critics into believers

Filipino fighter Rene Catalan made his sixth appearance inside the ONE Championship cage at ONE: Kings of Courage held at the Jakarta Convention Center in Indonesia, Saturday evening. He faced 21-year-old Chinese athlete Peng Xue Wen in the opening main card bout, and leaned on his elite wushu to stop the young star at the 4:22 mark of the second round.

The victory improves Catalan’s record to 4-2 (1 NC), extends his winning streak to four, and gives him the first TKO stoppage of his martial arts career, as he bids to climb the strawweight ladder in search of the ONE Strawweight World Championship.

“The Challenger” came out in the southpaw stance to open the bout, throwing big hooks and a head kick that narrowly missed as he established the center of the cage from the start of the contest.

The Filipino landed a host of powerful strikes, including a perfectly-placed uppercut and a melee of punishing leg kicks, but Peng’s conditioning and composure kept him in the match as he looked to stand and trade with the man 18 years his elder.

Catalan picked up where he left off when the bout resumed in the second round, this time operating out of the orthodox stance, landing more leg kicks and continuing to deny Peng any space to work.

Despite his dominance on the feet, there was a brief moment of concern for the Filipino on the mat when he jumped into the Chinese wrestler’s guard mid-way through the second round, and immediately found himself in a triangle choke. But the Filipino kept his composure and managed to work himself free.

Once the bout returned to the feet, Catalan poured on the pressure in search of a finish, and he got it with just 38 seconds remaining in the stanza.

“The Challenger” scored big with a liver shot, then unloaded a fierce flurry of punches that forced Peng onto his back foot. Another shot forced Peng to the mat, where a salvo of ground and pound from Catalan eventually forced the TKO stoppage as referee Olivier Coste stepped in to halt the contest.

Photo, story, and video from ONE Championship

Advertisements
Continue Reading

Basketball

Gelo Alolino regrets Phoenix’s failure to close out Hotshots

Published

on

Photo by PBA Images

Gelo Alolino had his best game for Phoenix Fuel Masters Saturday night at the Cuneta Astrodome with 19 points, eclipsing his previous career-high of 16 markers which he made last May 21, 2017 in a loss to Mahindra Floodbuster.

But that achievement of his won’t be that memorable, as it went for naught following a 91-97 defeat they had absorbed into the hands of Paul Lee and Magnolia Hotshots, who have now collected their third straight victory.

For the second overall pick in the regular 2016 Rookie Draft, it was all because of their failure to sustain momentum up until the game’s final buzzer.

“Sayang, nandun na. We felt na sa amin na nung dulo kaso lang ganun talaga,” rued the 24-year-old sophomore after the match, where he shot an excellent 7-of-10 from the floor.

“Breaks of the game napunta sa kabila.”

Phoenix was there in contention all through out the match. In fact, they were even ahead, 89-84, with just three minutes left to play. But then, the Hotshots’ comebacking skills were unleashed, leading to the narrow win.

“Siyempre kami lahat nasayangan. Maganda naman yung team effort talaga namin,” expressed the 6-foot floor general of their end-game collapse, which wasted their efforts in assists (21) and on defense, where they forced Magnolia to 21 turnovers.

“Kami as players talagang gusto namin bumawi coming from a loss last game sa Rain or Shine.

The Fuel Masters have now lost their second straight outing and have dropped to 2-3. And for Alolino, all they have to do is learn as much as they can from this loss, especially now that they are about to face Barangay Ginebra next.

“Yun nga. Medyo masakit para sa’min ‘to,” admitted the National University product.

“All we have to do is magviview ulit kami ng tape para makita kung saan kami mas pwede mag-improve as a team and bawat isa — including me.”

Advertisements
Continue Reading

Basketball

Glenn Khobuntin repays Ricky Dandan’s trust with end-game heroics

Published

on

FILE Photo from PBA Images

Glenn Khobuntin can finally say that he had himself a moment in the pro ranks

The National University alumnus proved his worth for Kia Picanto, scoring his team’s final six points to steer the often-ridiculed club to its’ first win after a historic 16-game skid at the expense of Rain or Shine Elasto Painters, 98-94.

“I knew he would. I knew he would,” lauded Kia head coach Ricky Dandan of the takeover the six-foot-four forward made.

“It was a blessing he didn’t play for the first two quarters because he [came in] fresh at gigil na gigil.”

Khobuntin finished with 11 markers on 5-of-7 shooting — the best game he’s had so far not because of the numbers he posted but with the way he made it. But the three-year pro does not want to take the spotlight all by himself.

“Hindi lang din naman ako e, kami ding lahat e,” the 26-year-old shared. “Siguro kumbaga nagka-opportunity lang, napunta sa akin yung bola kasi yun yung nasa scheme ng play so ayun.

“Thankful lang ako na-hit ko yung mga na-design na plays.”

However, the third-year pro admitted that he got frightened during the game’s final stretch, as Rain or Shine managed to impose a serious threat by coming back from a seven-point deficit, 94-96, with just less than 22 ticks left to play.

“Kinakabahan ako kasi two minutes pa rin yun e tapos Rain or Shine yung kalaban namin,” the native of Cagayan de Oro said. “Nakita ko nakakabalik sila. Thankful lang naman ako na yung game napunta sa amin, at least natapos yung losing streak namin.”

But more than the end of their months-long slump, what Khobuntin is grateful for is the trust given to him by Dandan, who fielded him as a starter in the second half after sitting out the entirety of the first 24 minutes.

“Nag-decide siya na ako yung i-start niya so thankful ako kasi nagtiwala siya sa akin.”

Advertisements
Continue Reading

ABL

Justin Brownlee, Alab lock down Knights for fifth win

Published

on

Paying a visit to Indonesia for the first time this season, Tanduay Alab Pilipinas needed time to figure the CLS Knights out before stifling the hosts in the final frame to take a 92-87 road win, Saturday evening at the GOR CLS Kertajaya in Indonesia.

This is Alab’s second straight win after losing to the Singapore Slingers last January 10.

With the win, the Philippine-based club team lifts its slate to 5-4 for solo fourth. CLS, on the other hand, dropped to 1-7 — just half a game ahead of the cellar-dwelling Formosa Dreamers.

Justin Brownlee displayed his all-around brilliance in the game, leading Alab with 36 points on 15-for-24 shooting to go along with eight rebounds, seven assists, and three steals.

Alab’s bench however could not sustain the effort of the starters that led to them clinging to a two-point lead with 7:06 remaining.

Needing a sparkplug, 40-year-old sniper Dondon Hontiveros provided the spark for Alab, knocking down a triple that proved to be the starting point 14-2 Alab run. A jumper by Bobby Ray Parks Jr. with 2:57 left capped the rally and gave Alab an 87-73 lead.

Hontiveros scored five of the eight Alab bench points. Fortunately for Alab, Renaldo Balkman and Bobby Ray Parks Jr. were on-point with the former tallying a double-double with 17 points and 13 rebounds while Alab’s skipper had 14 points, four assists, two rebounds, two steals, and two blocks.

Coach Jimmy Alapag fielded his bench afterwards that resulted to the quintet of Brian Williams, Mario Wuysang, Arif Hidayat, Decorey Jones, and Sandy Kurniawan to slice the lead to as low as four points. Free throws by Oping Sumalinog with eight ticks left put CLS away for good.

Williams paced CLS with 22 points and 14 rebounds while Kurniawan added 19 markers. Indonesian legend Wuysang had 17 points and six rebounds in the loss.

Alab ends its road trip on Sunday, January 28 when they take on the Saigon Heat at the CIS Arena in Ho Chi Minh City.

Advertisements
Continue Reading

Trending