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NU silences S76 champions ADMU; sweeps elims

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With the defending champions Ateneo de Manila University down 2-1 in match wins, but with momentum on their side going into the 4th match, it was the highly-touted tandem of Joper Escueta and Peter Magnaye who silenced the once-vibrant Ateneo crowd in their doubles match against Nicole Filart and Patrick Gecosala. With the win, the National University shuttlers sweep the elimination round and earned themselves a thrice-to-beat advantage in the UAAP Season 77 Badminton Championship series.

 

Men’s Singles Match 1: Peter Gabriel Magnaye (NU) def. Patrick Wilfred Natividad (ADMU); 2:1

ADMU 0 – 1 NU

 

This was the match that every badminton fan has been waiting for. In a battle of two highly-ranked shuttlers, #3 ranked Peter Gabriel Magnaye faced-off against #4 ranked Patrick Wilfred Natividad in the opening match of this year’s Ateneo-National series. In the first set, the higher-ranked Magnaye would break-away with an early 11-7 lead prior to the 11th-point break. Magnaye would utilize a number of razor-sharp returns which Natividad would fail to return. That 4-point lead would balloon to a 15-8 lead before Magnaye would cap it by winning the 1st game 21-12. The 2nd game would see Magnaye again storm to another 11-7 lead. This time however, Magnaye would be flat-footed and too relaxed which resulted to careless returns and failed lobs. Patrick Natividad would take advantage of this to storm back and win the 2nd game 21-18. Coach Jojo would remind Magnaye to stay focused before the 3rd game started. Peter Maganaye would then blitz through the 3rd game with a masterful display of strength and strategy to win the game and the match in a blow-out, 21-7.

 

Aggregate Score: Magnaye 60 – Natividad 40

Total Match Time: 55 mins

 

Men’s Singles Match 2: Philip Joper Escueta (NU) def. Carlo Glenn Remo (ADMU); 2:0

ADMU 0 – 2 NU

 

In another match-up of ranked shuttlers, #7 ranked and UAAP Season 75 Men’s Badminton Most Valuable Player Joper Escueta defeated #18 ranked in the Men’s Open Division and #3 ranked in the U19 division Carlo Remo in straight sets to give the National University Shuttlers a 2 sets to love lead over the Blue Shuttlers. The first set would see the former MVP blitz to a 9-3 lead in the early part of the 1st game. Remo would not find an answer to the strong returns of Escueta enroute to a 21-11 victory for Escueta. The first half of the 2nd set would be a tight affair with both shuttlers going point-for-point with Escueta holding on to a solitary point advantage. The match would be tied at 11-all before Escueta would score a string of 7 straight points from excellent smashes and errand returns from Remo. Escueta would sweep the match with a score of 21-15 in the 2nd set.

 

Aggregate Score: Escueta 42 – Remo 26

Total Match Time: 30 mins

 

Men’s Doubles Match 1: Justin Wilbert Natividad and Patrick Wilfred Natividad (ADMU) def. Alvin Morada and Rosleenard Pedrosa (NU); 2-1

ADMU 1 – 2 NU

 

The Natividad brothers faced-off against the uber-athletic tandem of Morada and Pedrosa in a do-or-die match in the 1st doubles match in the series. The 1st game was a classic. The NU tandem would gain an early 10-5 advantage early on. Justin Natividad would lead the Natividad pair to give the Hail Mary pair a 7-point rally, including a lot of diving returns. With the Natividads up 18-16, Morada would score 3 straight points, all excellent smashes, to give them a solitary point advantage 19-18. The game would then be tied 20-all to extend the set into advantage points. The game would be tied another 4 times before Rosleenard Pedrosa would be able to seal the game for the NU squad, 26-24. The 2nd set saw tired legs for the NU tandem. Justin and Patrick Natividad, with their backs against the wall, would come-out like a house-on-fire. They would storm to a 7-1 lead and extend the lead to 17-6, including an amazing decoy play by the younger Natividad to set his brother up to an excellent smash. The pair from Katipunan would take the 2nd game with a score of 21-9. The deciding game would see Patrick Natividad lead the Ateneo tandem to an early 13-7 lead over Morada and Pedrosa. Pedrosa and Morada would then come crawling back into the game to cut the Ateneo lead to a single point 15-14. With the score at 17-18, Justin Natividad would return with a push-shot that was in to give them a 19-17 lead. Rosleenard Pedrosa, together with the small NU contingent, was in disbelief that the shot was good since they alleged that Justin’s racket would hit the net before it hit the shuttlecock. Pedrosa would argue with the umpire, Bernanos, before being served with a yellow card. Pedrosa and Morada would be on tilt and would not recover afterwards. The 21st point came from Justin Natividad smash that Pedrosa would fail to return. Frustrated, Pedrosa would slam his racket to the mat bending it beyond use. Justin and Patrick Natividad took the set 21-18 to give ADMU a match point. In a sign of good sportsmanship, Pedrosa would apologize to the umpire afterwards.

 

Aggregate Score: J. Natividad and P. Natividad 66 – Morada and Pedrosa 53

Total Match Time: 55 mins

 

Men’s Doubles Match 2: Philip Joper Escueta and Peter Gabriel Magnaye (NU) def. Nicole Clarence Filart and Patrick Gecosala (ADMU); 2:0

ADMU 1 – 3 NU (NU wins)

 

The Ateneo crowd, knowing that the momentum was on their side were loud in cheering “One Big Fight” to welcome Nicole Filart and Patrick Gecosala into the court. #1 ranked in the U19 division Nicole Filart was paired with Patrick Gecosala to take on the best doubles team this season. The tandem of Escueta and Magnaye have not lost even a single set in this tournament. The young team from Ateneo had no answer for the veterans. Joper Escueta and Peter Magnaye would dominate both sets in a masterful display of court-control, excellent offense and amazing reflex. They would win both sets in blow-outs 21-4 and 21-7 in just 20 minutes of total court action. The National University Shuttlers, with this match win, has swept the elimination round and go straight to the finals with a thrice-to-beat advantage.

 

Aggregate Score: Escueta and Magnaye 42 – Filart and Gecosala 11

Total Match Time: 20 mins

 

Men’s Singles Match 3: Justin Wilbert Natividad (ADMU) def. Rosleenard Pedrosa (NU); 2:0

ADMU 2 – 3 NU (NU wins)

 

Rosleenard Pedrosa was looking to avenge the loss they received from the doubles match against the Natividads in the final match of the series against Justin Natividad. Natividad not wanting to give-up a loss even if this was a no-bearing game, had none of it. The 1st set would be tied at 10-all before Justin Natividad would slowly get his momentum to win the set 21-18. The 2nd set would be another close set earlier on with the game being tied 8 times. The final tie would be at 14-all before Justin Natividad would score 7 of the games last 8 points to close the game at 21-15.

 

Aggregate Score: J. Natividad 42 – Pedrosa 33

Total Match Time: 45 mins.

 

Total Games Won: ADMU 5 – NU 7

 

The National University Shuttlers have now swept the elimination round and will go straight to the finals with a thrice-to-beat advantage. Meanwhile, the defending champions would face the UP Fighting Maroons on Wednesday at the Rizal Memorial Badminton Hall in a playoff match-up.

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Basketball

Calvin Abueva, Raymond Almazan cut from pool

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SMART Gilas Pilipinas’ third session for the second leg of the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers ended early on Monday evening.

Prior to the end of the practice, head coach Chot Reyes talked to team veterans Jayson Castro, Gabe Norwood, and June Mar Fajardo. The outspoken mentor told the seniors of the team that he is cutting Calvin Abueva and Raymond Almazan from the pool.

“The reason why we’re dropping Abueva and Almazan for the second window is because they haven’t showed up,” lamented Reyes.

“It’s already our third practice at hindi pa sila nagpapakita. It’s simply a matter of disinterest.

“I guess they’re not interested so we have to move on we can’t wait for those guys,” he pointed out.

Both Abueva and Almazan were part of the teams that competed in the 2017 SEABA Championship, the 2017 FIBA Asia Cup, and the first window of the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers.

Only 10 players from the pool showed up for the team’s third session. And with the second leg exactly one month away, Gilas cannot let a slip up happen especially against Australia.

“Aside from those two we don’t know where Matt Wright is, while Allein [Maliksi] is attending a wedding in Australia. Other than that it’s really just an issue of Calvin and Raymond if they don’t want to be a part of the pool.” expressed Reyes.

“That’s the reason we’re dropping them for the second window.”

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2019 FIBA World Cup Qualifiers

23 for 2023 cadets fill up Gilas practice

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With just 31 days until the second window of the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers, only 10 players from the pool attended the team’s third session, Monday evening at the Meralco Gym.

Suiting up in the session presided over by Coach Chot Reyes were June Mar Fajardo, Gabe Norwood, Troy Rosario, Jio Jalalon, Mac Belo, Kiefer Ravena, Kevin Alas, and Roger Pogoy. Carl Cruz and Jayson Castro were in attendance but were in street clothes.

Not present were Matthew Wright, Japeth Aguilar, and Allein Maliksi. Calvin Abueva and Raymond Almazan have yet to attend practice.

Joining the seniors team to prep them up for the World Cup Qualifiers were 10 players from the 23 for 2023 pool.

Ateneo Blue Eagle Matt Nieto attended his first Gilas practice. Joining him were teammates Isaac Go and Thirdy Ravena.

Completing the night’s cast were CJ Perez, Abu Tratter, Will Gozum, J-jay Alejandro, Arvin Tolentino, and Juan Gomez de Liano. Joshua Sinclair watched from the sidelines as he is still recovering from an ACL injury.

Gilas will take on Australia in Melbourne on February 22. The Philippine will then host Japan three days later at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.

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CSJL

San Beda fends off Letran for back-to-back wins

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With seasoned setter John Carlo Desuyo steering the wheel to near perfection, the San Beda College romped to their second straight win.

The Red Spikers pulled double-digit outings from four players to upend archrival Colegio de San Juan de Letran Knights, 19-25, 25-13, 25-21, 25-22, and register their fourth win of the season, Monday early evening at the FilOil Flying V Centre.

It was the Knights, however, who started on the right foot, overhauling a 4-10 deficit to snag the first set. Better passing from liberos Aljune Centeno and Johnsen Timbreza resulted in kills from captain Bobby Gatdula.

Nonetheless, San Beda picked up the service game in the next three sets to ultimately finish off the blue-shirts.

Despite the win-loss record they currently sport, the Red Spiker playmaker admitted that t

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Basketball

Michael Calisaan tows Che’lu-San Sebastian past Perpetual

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Photo by PBA Images

Michael Calisaan poured 20 points as he captained newcomer Che’Lu-San Sebastian Revellers to a decisive 83-70 win over the University of Perpetual Help System DALTA Altas to start their voyage, Monday evening at the Pasig City Sports Center.

Doing it all for the Revellers, the veteran forward provided the stability for his side as he shot 8-of-15 from the field while also hauling down nine rebounds, two assists, and two steals in the conference-opening win.

But it wasn’t all Calisaan as Che’Lu got contributions from all over its roster.

Samboy de Leon chimed in 16 markers and nine boards. RK Ilagan went 2-of-5 from threes to collect 13 points, eight dimes, and three rebounds, while big men Alfred Batino and Jeepy Faundo combined for 20 in the victory.

Despite the triumph, coach Stevenson Tiu gave all the praise to his players, noting the team’s lack of time preparing for the tourney.

“Nanalo kami dahil sa talent ng players. Medyo mali ko rin kasi nahirapan pa ako mag-adjust sa players. Hopefully, we play much better in the coming games,” he said.

The Revellers used a 16-4 run to finally break away from the Altas, taking a 77-60 lead with 4:03 to play as they punished their foes for their turnovers, turning Perpetual’s 30 miscues to 28 points in their favor.

Prince Eze anchored the Altas with 15 points, 11 rebounds, and seven blocks in their first game under new head coach Frankie Lim.

Che’lu-San Sebastian look to make it two in a row when they take on the Wangs-Letran Couriers on Monday, January 29 at 5:00pm. Perpetual, on the other hand, hope they can notch their first win when they take on Mila’s Lechon Mighty Roasters.

The Scores:

Che’lu-SSCR 83 — Calisaan 20, De Leon 16, Ilagan 13, Batino 10, Faundo 10, Bulanadi 6, Costelo 6, Calma 2, David 0, Lao 0, Santos 0, Valdez 0.

UPHSD 70 — Eze 15, Coronel 13, Villanueva 13, Jimenez 9, Charcos 7, Peralta 7, Gallardo 5, Pido 1, Antonio 0, Aurin 0, Tamayo 0, Tongco 0.

Quarterscores: 17-22, 34-38, 59-53, 83-70.

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