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At The SEA Games Episode 8: A golden rush of rebirth

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The excitement continues as Team Philippines duplicated Sunday’s golden haul to propel themselves to sixth place at the conclusion of the day’s events, June 9, for the 28th Southeast Asian Games. The five mints gathered today share a common story of rebirth – a sign of great things to come, not just for now, but also in the future.

Here is how our squad fared in their Day 9 of action in Singapore. This is At The SEA Games.

By: Aeron Valderrama, Aldo Tong, Joseph Bautista, Kim Leong, Brian Tamayao, Joaqui Flores, Levi Verora, Paolo Poblador, and Matthew Li

Athletics: Cray and Richardson are the fastest men and women in SEA Games

Kayla Richardson
TEAM PHILIPPINES started off strong in Day 1 of the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games 2015 Athletics Competition. As of the first day, our country has been able to collect three gold medals, one silver medal, one SEA Games record, and one national record.

Top-seeded hopefuls Caleb Stuart, Eric Cray, and Kayla Richardson all delivered by giving the Philippines three gold medals. The three athletes remain to have other events in upcoming days of the competition.

Track Events
Philippine sprint star, Eric Cray won gold and set a new national record in the 100m dash after clocking 10.25 seconds, beating his own previous national record of 10.33 seconds set earlier this year.

Cray ran away with the gold medal as he was 0.20 seconds away from both silver and bronze medal finishers, Boby Yaspi and Iswandi Iswandi from Indonesia.

Even during the heats, Cray was already seeded to win gold after clocking 10.28 seconds, slowing down in the last 15 meters of the race.

On the other hand, 17-year old Kayla Richardson brought home the other 100m gold medal after clocking 11.76 seconds in the finals, 0.06 seconds slower than her time in the heats.

It was an extremely close race between Richardson and Thailand’s Hannakit. However, according to the photo finish, Richardson came in first, which earned her the gold medal, awarding Hannakit the silver medal.

Field Events
Caleb Stuart did not fail to impress as he delivered the Philippines’ first athletics gold medal of the day and of the competition. His gold is also our eighth gold medal of the games.

Despite not beating his personal best of 68.66m in the hammer throw, he was still able to dominate the competition with his throw of 65.63m, also establishing a new SEA Games record in the process.

Stuart was 3.61m ahead of defending champion, Tantipong Phetchaiya of Thailand. Phetchaiya was also the previous SEA Games record holder of the event.

Philippine Junior and Senior Pole Vault National record holder, Ernest Obiena only managed to vault 5.25m, 0.05m away from his personal best from a few weeks ago of 5.30m, earning him the silver medal.

Thailand’s Porranot Purahong won the gold with a vault of 5.30m. Obiena and Purahong both broke the SEA Games record after clearing 5.25m. The new record, however, now belongs to Purahong as he cleared higher than Obiena in the final result.

In the Men’s Triple Jump, Harry Diones almost gave our country a bronze medal after jumping 15.87m, placing him in fourth place. Bronze medalist, Van Hung Nguyen from Vietnam jumped 15.92m, only 0.05 apart from Diones’ jump.

Decathlon Half-Time
Defending champion, Jesson Cid is currently second after five events. The national record holder scored 3822 points, only 97 points away from Thailand’s Suttisak Singkon, who currently ranks first.

Cid ran the fastest 100m and 400m with 10.82 seconds and 49.07 seconds, respectively. Compatriot Janry Ubas, who currently ranks third with 3806 points, ranked first in the Long Jump and High Jump, with 7.45m and 2.10m, respectively.
With five more events to go, both men way very well exceed the 7000-point barrier.

In summary:

NameJesson CidJanry Ubas
100 M11.08s11.10s
Long Jump7.02 m7.45 m
Shot Put11.77 m10.65 m
High Jump1.83 m2.01  m
400 m49.07 s52.39 s

Diving: PH divers close SEAG campaign

PH Diving
On the final day of the diving competitions in the 28th SEAG, all of our four divers fittingly saw action, at the OCBC Aquatic Center.

John David Pahoyo and John Elmerson had their swan song in the men’s 3m synchronized springboard. The duo started well with their first dive scoring 8.0’s in their synchronization towards a 45.60 mark, which is good to tie for fourth place with Vietnam’s Vu Anh Duy and Phung Van Nam. In the subsequent dives, however, they faltered and ended up in last place with 309.3.

The female divers suffered the same fate in the women’s 10m platform. 19-year old Hazel Abiera finished 10th with 160.05. She reached as high as seventh place after scoring 40.25 in her fourth dive: forward 2 ½ somersault from pike position. It was a promising start for her compatriot Riza Jane Domenios when she registered 42.55 in very first dive. However, Domenios wilted in the following dive and could not recover in the succeeding ones to end up in last place with 159.75.

It was the end of the growing pains of Philippine diving for this SEAG, 10 years after the surprise gold finishes when the country hosted the event.

Basketball: Perlas drops opening game

Perlas Blackwater vs Thai
In what was going to be its toughest test in the tournament, Perlas Pilipinas dropped its first assignment to reigning champions Thailand, 57-62 at the OCBC Arena, Tuesday morning.

The Philippine side fell to an 11-point hole in the third period, 27-38. The Nationals fought back with intensity to take a 46-43 lead early in the fourth quarter. Thailand, however, showcased its composure and hit critical baskets inside the paint with the game going down the wire to preserve the win.

The squad will try to bounce back against Vietnam in the following day, 9am at the same venue.

Billiards and Snooker: Centeno continues mastery of Amit; pockets gold

In the spotlight after that magical run in the previous days, the campaign of the Philippine cue artists went full circle in an all-Filipino final at the OCBC Arena Hall 4.

The day did not start well as veteran Reynaldo Grandea and 15-year Jefrey Roda loss their quarterfinal match against Singapore’s Keng Kwang Chen and singles gold medallist, Peter Gilchrist, 1-3. Things turned out better for the rest of the field as Carlo Biado and the duo of Michael Mengorio and Alvin Barbero won their respective matches in the same stage. In men’s 9-ball singles, Biado upended Le Quang Trung of Vietnam, 9-6, to move on to the semifinals. Mengorio and Barbero followed suit with a 3-0 win over Myanmar’s Htet Ko and Ko Win Ko.

Bowling: Team PH starts slow; fails to gain medal on opening day

Taking to the lanes for the opening day of 2015 SEAG Bowling Tournament at the Orchid Country Club, Philippine bowlers competing in both men’s and women’s singles failed to show a strong opening due to an early slip.

Filipino athletes competing in the men’s singles experienced an early fizzle, as none of them ultimately ended in top ten position. Enrico Hernandez, who finished at 18th out of 41 bowlers, was the country’s highest ranked player after accumulating a total score of 1142, 166 points less than Malaysia’s Rafiq Ismael, who won the tournament’s first gold, over a series of six games. The other Nationals who competed in the event are Jo-Mar Jupao (1136 total points), Kenneth Chua (1134), Frederick Ong (1132), and Jonas Baltasar (1104) ended at 22nd, 23rd, 24th, and 31st respectively.

Things did not improve, however, in the women’s singles event as the participating bowlers suffered a similar fate. Krizziah Tabora proved to be the country’s strongest player for the first day as she is the only Filipino bowler to break into the Top 10 by placing 8th out of a total 34 participants, scoring a total of 1267 after six games, with an average score of 211.2. Posting slightly better results than their male counterparts, Tabora’s comrades, Lara Posadas (ranked 18; 1175 total points), Liza del Rosario (ranked 20; 1166 total points), Maria Arles (ranked 23; 1154 total points), Marie Alexis Sy (ranked 25; 1129 total points), and Liza Clutario (ranked 27; 1120 total points), rounds up the team’s campaign on Day 1.

Gymnastics: First gold in 10 years

The Filipino gymnasts started the day on a high, with Reyland Capellan placing first in the men’s floor exercise Finals, earning a gold medal for the Philippines, he scored a total of 13.733 points, outdoing Singapores Wah Toon Hoe’s 14.566. The other Filipino who qualified for the floor exercise , Rafael Lii Ablaza, scored 13.400 and placed eighth overall.

Not to be outdone, Ava Lorein Verdeflor, the lone pinay in the women’s uneven bars Finals, placed second, earning herself a silver medal after scoring 12.366, just .400 short of tying Ing Yueh Tan for first.

Golf: Opening day in Sentosa Club

At the opening day of the 28th SEA Games Golf championship at the Sentosa Golf Club, the Philippines is currently ranked at third with a combined score of 222.

Aniceto Mandanas had the most points for the country with 80 while Weiwei Gao and Ruperto Zaragoza had 75 apiece. Meanwhile, Dan Emilio Cruz chipped in 75.

The second round of this Golf competition will resume tomorrow, 8:00 am, at the Sentosa Golf Club.

Petanque: Blank slate for Baking and De La Cruz

The preliminary rounds of the mixed doubles event continued from the previous day with the Philippines going up against Malaysia, Laos, Indonesia, and Vietnam. The pair of Arvin Baking and Violeta De La Cruz attempted to salvage their winless record in the last day of the preliminary round.

In their first match of the day, the Filipinos fell to the pair from Malaysia, Nurul Atiqah Abu Talib and Syed Akmal Fikri Syed Ali, 13-4. The pinoys fared better in their next match, this time against Xokananh Fongsanouvong and Chansamone Vongsavath from Laos. Unfortunately, Baking and De La Cruz fell to the duo from Laos, 13-8.

The Filipinos were still unable to earn their first win as they lost to the Indonesians, Annisa Alfath and Hadi Aulia Rachman, 13-9. Finally, in their last match of the day, the pair lost to Thi Huyen Tran Ngo and Thach Lam Tran from Vietnam, 13-3.

Despite finishing the mixed doubles without a win, Baking and De La Cruz will attempt a better outing in the men’s and women’s doubles preliminary rounds.

Softball: Mercy Rule wins for Blu Boys and Girls

Image from Blu Girls’ Cheska Altomonte

The softball national team continued their dominant run at Kallang Softball Field with shutouts of their opponents in semifinals action. Both men’s and women’s team went up against the hosts Singapore in the semifinals.

For the Blu Boys, both teams did not score runs in the first two innings of the game. However, after finding their footing, the Philippine team bombarded the hosts with eight runs in the next three innings to take an 8-0, 5th inning mercy rule win to advance to the finals.

The Blu Girls, on the other hand, started off strong in punching in four runs each in the first two innings to gain an 8-0 lead. Two more runs in the bottom of the fourth inning secured a finals spot for the queens of the diamond. Final score was 10-0, fourth inning mercy rule.

Shooting: Mixed results for RP Shooters

The RP Shooters had mixed results in the SEA Games shooting competitions held in the National Shooting Centre.

The day opened with the elimination phase for the Women’s 50m Rifle Prone competition. Both Inna Therese Gutierrez and Amparo Teresa Acuña qualified for the finals. Gutierrez barely made it with a 609.6 cumulative score, good for 11th, while Acuña ranked 10th with a cumulative score of 612.7.

Paul Brian Rosario also qualified for the semifinals of the Men’s Skeet competition. Rosario squeaked past SIN’s David Chan by just two points, 110-108, to get the final semifinals spot. Joaquin Miguel Ancheta and Gabriel Tong were in last place in the 12-man competition. In the semifinals, however, Rosario connected with just half of the 16 targets and was eliminated in the phase.

In the men’s skeet team competition, the team of Rosario, Ancheta, and Tong were just eight points away from gaining a bronze place finish. The RP team scored 300 points in the competition but were just eight points shy of team MAS score.

The country’s lone representative in the Men’s 50m Rifle Prone competition, Jayson Valdez, was eliminated in the elimination round phase of the tournament. After an excellent start in the first two series, Valdez only had 99.0 and 97.8 points in the next two. The bronze medalist in the men’s 10m rifle competition could not recover as he accumulated a total of 607.7 points, 14th place in the 20 man competition.

Football: Early Dimas brace condemns U23 Azkals to woeful exit

In their final 28th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games football match, the Phiilippines slipped to a 2-0 defeat against Indonesia Wednesday evening at the Jalan Besar Stadium in Singapore. Evan Dimas masterminded the Filipinos’ downfall this time around. His early brace was enough to punish the Young Azkals for the fourth and the last time in the competition.

After defending for most of the game, the Philippines began pressing forward with the hopes of cutting the deficit to just a solitary goal. Midway through the second half, the Filipinos obtained more touches inside the Indonesians’ half. However, the Young Azkals preference of shooting from long range instead of patiently circumventing the organized Indonesian defense only led to harmless shots from outside the box. As time ran out, Amita nearly gifted the Philippines something to cheer about with an acrobatic attempt, but Amiruddin easily held the Manila Jeepney FC player’s effort. It would have done little to alter the outcome of the game, as the referee soon sounded the final whistle that signaled the end of the Filipinos’ participation in the 2015 SEA Games.

Equestrian: Lone dressage rider misses podium

Finishing the qualifying stage of the individual dressage competition in fifth, Angelica Ayala went into the medal rounds with high hopes, Tuesday at the Singapore Turf Club Riding Centre.

However, in the finals, Ayala failed to make a better run to get a chance at a medal. The Filipina rider scored lowest from all judges to finish with 60.600 and ended in 6th place

Sailing: Silver medal for PH sailors

At the end of the first medal races of the 2015 SEAG sailing tournament, the Philippines walked away with a silver, Tuesday, at the National Sailing Centre.

It was not an ideal start as Rubin Cruz placed last in the medal race of the men’s laser standard, thereby finishing in fourth with 37 race points. In the female racing keelboat event, the Philippines missed on a podium finish after they also ended last in the medal race. The Filipinas are tied with Thailand going into the final rounds, but it was the Thais who took the bronze. Alaiza Belmonte placed no better than the aforementioned ones in the finals of the female’s laser radial event to amass 36 net points.

The men’s fleet racing keelboat team made sure that the country would not leave empty handed for the day. The crew of Ridgeley Balladres, Rommel Chavez, and Richly Magsanay placed third in the medal race to snare the silver with 18 net points. The Nationals are just point off Singapore after the opening series races, but the medal race finish proved costly to their gold medal hopes.

Squash: Surprise medal hope for Team PH

In the first day of the 28th SEA Games squash competitions, an unexpected turn of events happened at the Kallang Squash Centre.

Jemyca Aribado moved on to the semifinals of the women’s singles by beating Catur Yuliana of Indonesia and Nu Abdul Aziz of Singapore in succession. The young upstart defeated Yuliana, 3-1, in the round of 16, and the demolished the Singaporean in straight sets in the quarterfinals.

Robert Garcia almost made it two secured medals, but his journey was cut short in the round of 8 phase. Garcia crushed Paing Thet of Myanmar, 3-0, only to lose against Muhd Battiar in the quarterfinals, 3-0. His teammate David Pelino moved on to the last 8 as well after edging Thailand’s Arnold Phatraphasit, 3-2. Hometown bet Samuel Kang doused the Filipino’s chances, blanking Pelino in the medal qualifying match.

Tennis: Silver for the Filipinas

After a rousing win against Indonesia on the semifinals, the women’s team tried to upend top-ranked Thailand in the finals. Wongteanchai Varatchaya took the lead for the Thais in the first singles after winning over Khim Iglupas, 6-2 6-2. Katarina Lehnert then leveled the tie, winning the following singles in an upset of Kumkhum Leksika in three gruelling sets, 2-6 7-5 7-5. However, the defending champions with top-ranked players Tamarine Tanasugarn and Lertcheewakarn Noppawan overpowered the Filipinas Lehnert and Denise Dy in straight sets in the deciding doubles, 6-0 6-2, to win the gold once more. The Philippine tennis contingent added the silver to the bronze medal snared by the men’s team after the latter lost to Indonesia in the semifinals the other day.

In other matches, Filipino netters secured places to the next round. Ruben Gonzales moved to the second round of the men’s singles event with a straight sets victory over Trinh Linh Giang of Vietnam, 6-2 6-3. Meanwhile, Francis Alcantara and Treat Huey smashed Singapore’s Sherwin Foo and Muhammad Meqsud Alam, 6-2 6-2, to advanced to the next round as well.

Swimming: Yu and Alkhaldi salvage bronze medals

The Filipino tankers duplicated their day three performance with another pair of bronze medals in day four courtesy of Roxanne Ashley Yu and Jasmine Alkhaldi, hiking their total to seven bronze medals.

Roxanne Ashley Yu (L) and Jasmine Alkhaldi (R) won bronze medals in Day 4 of Swimming | Photo grabbed from Sport Singapore

Roxanne Ashley Yu (L) and Jasmine Alkhaldi (R) won bronze medals in Day 4 of Swimming | Photo grabbed from Sport Singapore

Both Yu and Alkhaldi lead all qualifiers in their respective events but eventually succumbed to the favorites in the evening finals. In the Women’s 100m Backstroke final, reigning record-holder Tao Li of Singapore simply overwhelmed the competition by finishing in 1:02.67, 1.71 seconds clear of the silver medalist Anak Agung Istri Kania Ratih of Indonesia, who registered a time of 1:04.38. The top seeded Yu would then touch next at 1:04.80, collecting her second bronze medal in the games. Elizabeth Ann Jordana of the Philippines finished at 8th place with her time of 1:05.94.

Later in the evening, Alkhaldi, who already has two bronze medals of her own, went up against the spectacular Vietnamese tanker Nguyễn Thị Ánh Viên and her 27th SEA Games tormentor Natthanan Junkrajang of Thailand, among other competitors. Nguyễn would simply outclass everyone enroute to a new games record of 1:59.27 and Junkrajang would again prevail over Alkhaldi by a mere three tenths of a second with her time of 2:00.54. But aside from bringing home her third bronze medal in the games, Alkhaldi, yet again, established a new Philippine record in the said event by clocking 2:00.84. Teammate Rosalee Mira Sta. Ana wound up 8th with a time of 2:10.87.

Two days remain but Team PH still remains hopeful of gaining a silver or even a gold medal in the remaining events. Below is the complete list of swimmers who saw action in Day 4 of the competition:

Women’s 200m Butterfly
7th Hannah Dato 2:18.47

Men’s 100m Butterfly
7th Jessie Khing Lacuna 55.34

Women’s 100m Backstroke
3rd Roxanne Ashley Yu1:04.80
8th Elizabeth Ann Jordana 1:05.94

Men’s 400m Individual Medley
5th Jose Joaquin Gonzalez 4:31.37

Women’s 200m Freestyle
3rd Jasmine Alkhaldi 2:00.84*
8th Rosalee Mira Sta. Ana 2:10.87
*Philippine National Record

The Philippines goes up to 6th place in the overall standings!

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ABL

Christian Standhardinger goes perfect from stripe in Hong Kong’s rout of Formosa

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After going a horrid 5-for-17 from the stripe during their first loss of the season last January 9, Christian Standhardinger made sure to make good on his free throws to power the Hong Kong Eastern Basketball Club to a dominant 99-79 rout of the Formosa Dreamers, Thursday evening in Southorn Stadium.

The 6-foot-8 Filipino-German, who tallied 37 points and 19 rebounds in the overtime loss to Saigon, went a perfect 9-for-9 from the foul line. He finished with 25 points and 10 rebounds.

The contest itself was not close, as the defending champions were able to impose their will on the bottom-ranked squad, leading by as much as 23 points, 93-70, after two free throws by Standhardinger with 2:58 remaining.

If Standhardinger was having a good day with his free throws, the entire Formosa squad could not say the same, going 13-of-27 from the line.

Tyler Lamb had 25 markers as well for Hong Kong, while Ryan Moss grabbed a triple-double with 19 points, 11 rebounds, and 11 assists.

Lenny Daniel paced Formosa with 25 points and 11 rebounds. World Import Ronnie Aguilar had 14 points and 16 rebounds but went just 5-for-14 from the field.

With the win, Hong Kong goes to 8-1, while the Dreamers fell to 1-8.

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2018 FIBA 3X3 World Cup

Chooks-to-Go President hopes 3×3 World Cup breaks Philippine Arena record

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Last October 27, 2017, Game Seven of the PBA Governors’ Cup Finals between heated rivals Barangay Ginebra San Miguel and Meralco Bolts saw 54,083 people troop to the Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan. The attendance broke all records for both the venue and the PBA.

Come June this year, the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas and Chooks-to-Go are hoping that the upcoming 2018 FIBA 3×3 World Cup will surpass that record.

“We look at 3×3 as our best hope, really, to get a medal in the Olympics. Kami naman sa Chooks, we are behind SBP realizing that dream. Kanina pinag-uusapan na, if we’re going to break the record in attendance,” said Bounty Agro Ventures Inc. president Ronald Mascariñas on Thursday afternoon during a press conference held at BGC High Street in Taguig.

“I think the question there is not if we’re going to break, but how many more times. Because FIBA should see how passionate the Filipinos are about basketball. That’s a given,” one of the patrons of Gilas Pilipinas added.

Besides the event itself, the local government of Bulacan has pledged to make the week of the tournament filled with activities to celebrate the Philippines’ 120th year of Independence.

For their part, Chooks-to-Go vowed to help out the SBP in organizing the event and in building the team.

“We are throwing our support not to improve on our finish, but we want to help SBP organize, to win the championship — not just to improve our ranking,” Mascariñas shared.

And the experience he and his company gained after backing the Pilipinas 3×3 team during last year’s tournament will only help.

“In past tournaments, we’ve lost some games na maninipis lang talaga,” he recalled about the team composed of Kobe Paras, Kiefer Ravena, Jeron Teng, and JR Quinahan that competed in Nantes, France.

“This time around, with five months to go, we need to organize and put in the best t

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Football

Ilocos United takes leave from PFL

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Another one bites the dust

After months of speculation, Ilocos United has formally announced their absence from the Philippines Football League for the 2018 season.

A statement signed by Ilocos Chief Executive Officer Tony Lazaro and posted on the club’s Facebook page broke the big news.

“Unfortunately, after months of negotiation, efforts to attract a new naming sponsor for the Team were unsuccessful,” the statement opened. “Consequently, it has become financially prohibitive to continue participation in the PFL.

“Primarily, the lack of broadcasting exposure in 2017 created an apprehension in the corporate community, cascading into a series of afflictions that has ultimately led to our withdrawal from the competition.”

Ilocos finished last during the inaugural season, tallying 1 win, 6 draws, and 21 losses with a -49 goal differential.

Still, Ilocos gave their thanks to those who supported the club during the inaugural PFL season.

“We are cautiously optimistic of a potential return to the PFL for the 2019 season, whereby secured broadcasting exposure will hopefully lead to higher confidence from potential sponsorship partners.”

While their PFL operations will fold for the time being, Ilocos will continue the grassroots programs they have started within the area. ¨In the meantime, the foundation of football development we helped to build in Ilocos will continue, including grassroots initiatives at local schools, women’s futsal, Special Olympics, and, of course, the IUFC Academy.¨

The latest development will be another big blow for the young league. Meralco Manila pulled out of the competition beforehand, and now Ilocos´ absence leaves only six teams in the competition.

Now more than ever, something needs to be done by the PFL or even the Philippine Football Federation to ensure the feasibility of the clubs and the league itself for years to come.

Football is a hard sport to build in the Philippines despite its resurgence since 2010. There are limited corporate boosters for the sport which is in dire need of a financial push to sustain its growth.

Ilocos´ leave and Meralco´s folding now forces local football´s stakeholders to take a step back and examine the next moves to build the sport.

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Basketball

CJ Perez, Jaycee Marcelino in unison: D-League is a whole other level

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After falling just two games short of copping Lyceum’s first-ever NCAA crown, the Pirates went to the PBA D-League to gain experience. However, in their first foray in the second league, the Lyceans realized that it was a whole different beast.

Going up against the veteran-laden Marinerong Pilipino Skippers, the Zark’s Burgers-backed squad suffered a slow start as they adjusted to the tougher calls of the league. The Jawbreakers were down by as much as 17 points early in the third frame, 37-54.

“Yung physicality hindi naman ako masyadong nagulat pero sa mental toughness, yung pagod ka na, tapos may babanggga pa sa ‘yo, ang iniisip ko kailangan mas maging tough,” admitted reigning NCAA Most Valuable Player CJ Perez.

“Nangangapa kami nung una lahat kasi first game namin ito, pati dito sa court na ‘to first game din namin,” added Jaycee Marcelino.

It served as a wake-up call. Adjusting on the fly, Perez and Marcelino rallied the Jawbreakers back — even fashioning multiple attempts to take over the contest late in the game. However, they fell short, 92-94.

“Binalik lang namin yung laro namin dati, pass the ball, hindi yung puro dribble, i-run lang namin yung plays,” shared Marcelino, as he and Perez combined to score 16 points in the final frame.

The 21-year-old Marcelino finished with a game-high 20 points on an efficient 7-of-9 shooting to go along with four rebounds, three assists, two steals, and a block. The 24-year-old Perez added 19 points, five assists, two steals, and a block.

With their first game in the bag, the duo — and the rest of the Jawbreakers — now have the experience under their belts. And they plan to put in the work to prove that they belong.

“Sa NC naman kasi puro ka-level namin kalaro namin, dito puro beterano ang naglalaro,” said Marcelino. “Hindi talaga namin masabi na yung ginawa namin sa NC magagawa din namin dito.

“Mageextra work pa kami para masustain namin kung ano kami sa Lyceum.”

“It’s a good experience. Ibang iba pala talaga yung laro ng D-League sa NCAA,” expressed Perez, who is a consensus top three pick for the upcoming PBA Rookie Draft.

“Sobrang grateful kami na nakalaro na rin kami sa D-League.”

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