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Spikers’ Turf rosters revealed; all set to begin its second conference



After a successful first conference, the inaugural season of the Spikers’ Turf is once again ready to to provide us with explosive volleyball action in its second conference of the year. This time, teams will be composed of collegiate players representing their different schools. Here are the lineups of each team:

Group A:


1 Roman Mendoza
2 Karlo Gorospe
3 Hariel Doguna
4 Kerth Melliza
5 Mark Guennon Arias
6 April John Pagtalunan (G)
7 Howard Mojica
8 Nicco Bihag
9 Israel Encina (C)
10 Juvie Mark Mangaring
11 Aljon Barbuco
12 Jun Cedrick Item
13 Zedrick John Cilocilo
14 Sid Raymund Gerella

Head Coach: Rodrigo Palmero


1 Redi John Paler
2 Richard Solis
3 Jesser Navas
4 Jeremiah Barrica
5 John Paul Bugaoan
6 Ronchette Lee Villegas
7 Gene Lucky Margate
8 Jeric Gacutan
9 Joshua Barrica
10 Kris Cian Silang
11 Jude Garcia
14 Peter Quiel
15 Joel Cayaban
16 Gregorio Dolor (C)

Head Coach: Joseph Santos


1 Rey-arth Andaya
2 Brandon Mendoza
3 Philip Michael Bagalay (C)
4 Jobab Dermejo
5 Calvin Karlo Vargas (G)
6 Sam Damian
7 Raven Evangelista
8 Dian Carlo
9 Paul John Cuizon
10 Sam Aimalel (G)
11 Anjo Pertierra
12 Samye Naverra
15 Alfred Pagulong
16 Ralph Ocampo

Head Coach: Mario Mia


1 Reyson Fuentes (G)
2 Russell Nutar
3 Edgar Lumachay
4 Josuha Vicente
5 Jonel Vicente
6 Cj Oclima
7 Paul John Dimingo
8 Angelo Uguy
9 Edwin Tolentino (G)
10 Gefford Escobido
11 Lee Jumbo Nidua
12 Daryl Valuenzuela
14 Ralph Jonel Octima
15 Jason Canlas (C)

Head Coach: Ernesto Balubar


1 Vincent Mangulabnan (C)
3 Kim Harold Dayandante
4 Jhon Vincent Ogoc
5 Eldrige Capal
7 James Natividad
8 Bryan Bagunas
10 Fauzi Ismail
11 Francis Saura
12 Louwie Chavez
14 Berhasidin Daymil
15 Ricky Marcos
16 Ruben Baysac
17 Kim Malabunga
18 Madzian Gampong

Head Coach: Dante Alinsunirin


1 Roniey Adviento
2 Samuel Lelic
4 Jose Saguin
5 Clifford Inoferio
6 Alvien Aljas
7 Adrian Rafael Imperial
8 Noel Angelo Alba
9 Vincent Magdaong
10 Lester Kim Sawal
11 Edward Camposano (C)
12 Geric Rodmar Ortega
14 Ruvince Abrot
15 Joshua Umandal
17 Patrick Yen Chueng

Head Coach: Ruel Pascua

Group B:


2 Kevin Liberato
3 Benrasid Latip
4 Rishnan Jed Digal
5 Dan Carlo Dela Cruz
7 Sanny Sarino
8 John Joseph Cabillan
9 Christian Joshua Segovia
10 Kenneth Aliyacyac
12 Lawrence Del Espiritu (C)
13 John Carlo Lozada (G)
14 Daryl Santo
15 Christian Dela Paz (G)
16 Christopher Soriano
17 Jesrael Liberato

Head Coach: Noel Segovia


1 Lawrence Gil Magadia
2 Karl Irvin Baysa
3 Ron Adrian Medalla
4 Joshua Villanueva
6 Anthony Paul Koyfman
7 Jose Antonio Bello (G)
8 Ysrael Wilson Marasigan (C)
9 Timothy James Sto. Tomas (G)
11 Rex Emmanuel Intal
13 Manuel Sumanguid III
14 Esmilzo Joner Polvorosa
15 Marck Jesus Espejo
16 Gian Carlo Glorioso
17 Ishmael John Rivera

Head Coach: Oliver Almadro


2 Racmade Etrone
3 Ron Julian Jordan
4 Isaah Arda
5 Berwyn Philip Coming
6 Redentor Relata
7 Renald Ugalde
8 Jethro Drian
9 Darryl Chua
10 John Vic De Guzman (C)
11 Vince Roson
12 Marjun Alingasa
13 Maurice Figueras (G)
14 Francis Basilan (G)
15 Mark Anthony Deximo

Head Coach: Arnold Laniog


1 Ralph Christian Calasin
2 Rafael Del Pilar
3 Reymark Woo (C)
5 Geriat Bell Bacon (G)
4 Levin Anthony Dimayuga
7 Cris Bernard Dumago
8 John Arjay Onia
9 Wayne Marco (G)
10 Esmund Joshua Jose
11 Reuel Asia
12 Geuel Asia
14 Jopet Adriam Movido
15 Zosimo Maravilla
19 Mike Anthony Frey

Head Coach: Ronald Dulay


1 Alvin Cacayuran (G)
2 Bryan Paul Castro
3 Daniel Angelo Benitez
4 Wilbert Sadida (G)
5 Niel Marquez
6 John Mark Pomada
8 Dexter Vohn Canilang
9 Al-Sharin Abdulwahab
10 Eddiemar Kasim
11 Al-Kaizar Que
12 Aldin Bin (C)
13 Ibrahim Kasim
14 Adam Adam
15 Jerome Roland Mirano

Head Coach: Joven Razelis


1 Jerameel Baldelovar
2 Gian Kyla San Pascual
3 Niccolo Consuelo
4 John Mark Castillo
5 Julius Evan Raymundo
6 Jan Earl San Pedro Jr.
7 Matthew Gohoc
8 John Miguel Nasol
9 John Carlo Madrigalejos
10 Wendel Miguel
11 Alfred Gerard Valbuena (C)
12 John Mark Millete
13 Wilhelm Victor Luna
15 Charles Drake Acuna

Head Coach: Melchor Santos

With numerous schools participating in the second conference of the Spikers’ Turf, the tournament will surely be a must watch for all volleyball fans.


Miguel Luis Flores fell face first into sports writing in high sch9l and has never gotten up. He reluctantly stumbled into the volleyball beat when he started with Tiebreaker Times three years ago. Now, he has waded through everything volleyball - from its icky politics to the post-modern art that is Jia Morado's setting.

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Mixed Martial Arts

Rene Catalan continues rampage with TKO win



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 skills 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 fighters returned to their 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

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Gelo Alolino regrets Phoenix’s failure to close out Hotshots



Photo by PBA Images

Gelo Alolino had his best game for the Phoenix Fuel Masters on 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 the Mahindra Floodbuster.

But his achievement won’t be too memorable, as it went for naught following a 91-97 defeat at the hands of Paul Lee and the 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 were in contention all throughout the match. In fact, they were even ahead, 89-84, with just three minutes left to play. But the Hotshots’ comeback skills were unleashed, leading to the narrow win.

“Siyempre kami lahat nasayangan. Maganda naman yung team effort talaga namin,” admitted 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 the Barangay Ginebra San Miguel 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.”

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



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

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

“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 them. But the three-year pro does not want to take the spotlight all onto 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 had been 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.”

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Justin Brownlee, Alab lock down Knights for fifth win



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.

But Alab’s bench could not sustain the effort of the starters, which meant the team was clinging to a two-point lead with 7:06 remaining.

Needing a spark, 40-year-old sniper Dondon Hontiveros provided 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. 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, but they let the quintet of Brian Williams, Mario Wuysang, Arif Hidayat, Decorey Jones, and Sandy Kurniawan slice the lead to as low as four points. Then 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 it takes on the Saigon Heat at the CIS Arena in Ho Chi Minh City.

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