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Team Asia bucks Team West comeback, takes back-to-back Queen’s Cup



Defending champions Team Asia secured their second title in a row and surviving a comeback by Team West, 10-7, at the end of the 2015 Queen’s Cup on Saturday, April 18, at the Newport Mall, Pasay City.

Sensing some need to step up, Team West, anchored on Ireland’s Karen Corr to bounce back for a tie in the tournament at 7-all. However, the Asians answered with a sweep of the next three matches to take the trophy.

Corr gets comeback win over Park

E. Park12XXXX2
K. CorrXX12344 (Winner)

Team Asia (7-5) Team West

Veteran Karen Corr completed a big fight back against Park Eunji, 4-2, to get Team West within 2 of Team Asia in the overall tally, 5-7.

Park started well, taking the first two frames of the match. Corr was on her way to tie it up in the second rack, but a crucial error on the 9-ball swung the score to the Korean.

Corr corrected that mistake and took the next four to win the match. The veteran showed her pocketing skills to breeze past the succeeding tables despite making miscues. Park, on her turn, had a great shot in the fourth but could not run out the frame.

Team West sweeps first doubles match

Park/J. ChenXXXX0
Corr/Barretta12344 (Winner)

Team Asia (7-6) Team West

Karen Corr paired up with Jennifer Barretta and swept Park Eunji and Jennifer Chen, 4-0, to further cut the deficit in the main scoreboard, 6-7.

It was a clinical game from the duo of Team West, keeping the Asians on their seats. Park had a good shot on the 3-ball in the first rack but missed allowing the opponent to take the score. In the following frame, Chen totally missed the 1-ball, giving Team West the cue ball in hand.

The Westeners had their own errors when Corr missed on the 3 in the third, but Park also mishit the 5-ball. It was all Team West after that, as Barretta and Corr ran out a Park dry break in the final frame.

Corr levels things up with a rousing win

S. Chen12X3XXX3
K. CorrXX1X2344 (Winner)

Team Asia (7-7) Team West

Karen Corr turned the tournament around, defeating world number 1 Chen Siming in a down-the-wire battle, 4-3, to tie the tournament count at 7-all.

Chen took the early lead against a tired Corr. At the opening frame, the top-seed player had an error at the beginning but took control of the table after Corr missed on the 7. The Irish veteran also scratched on hitting the 1-ball allowing Chen to take the 2-0 lead.

It was Chen’s turn to miss in the following frame. A clear hit at the 9-ball rattled out. Corr gets 10-ball to drop to get on the scoreboard. Corr scratched on her break in the fourth and Chen cleared the table to get into the hill, 3-1.

The Irishwoman got her bearings back and swept the next three racks to win the match. A scratch by Chen in the deciding frame made it even easier for Corr to take the seventh, 4-3, to level the overall tally at seven-all.

Team Asia gets lead back via sweep

Amit/S. Chen/J. Chen12344 (Winner)

Team Asia (8-7) Team West

The trio of Rubilen Amit, Jennifer Chen, and Chen Siming pummelled Karen Corr, Ewa Laurance, and Vivian Villareal, 4-0, to regain control of the tournament in the following match.

Just as how Jennifer Barretta and Corr won their doubles match, Team Asia pulled all stops to win the match. It was a highly defensive match where one mistake could be crucial. Villareal missed on a clear shot on the 10-ball, which J. Chen calmly sank for the 1-0 lead.

J. Chen continued to play well in the next frame getting a few balls to drop to set her teammate Amit for the money ball and get the win 2-0. Villareal’s woes spilled over the next frame when she scratched on her break. Amit set up the cue ball and easily got the 10-ball to drop off the 1-ball. Team Asia walked away with the fourth frame and the win as all three players of Team West missed on their chances at the table.

Team Asia moves one away from Cup

Team Asia (9-7) x1234 – – –4 (Winner)
Team West (7-9)1 xxxx – –1

Team Asia won the final four-by-four match of the tourney, 4-1, and inched into a win away towards the back-to-back title.

Team West almost missed on the chance on winning the opening frame when team captain Ewa Laurance committed a fault. In the ensuing play, Park Eunji missed on the 8-ball, giving the Westeners the 1-0 lead. The Korean rookie redeemed herself from this error in the following frame as she got the 10-ball to tie the match at one-apiece.

That turned out to be the confidence booster for Park as she played superb in the next frames for Team Asia. The rising star pocketed the money ball in the next two frames to put the champions on the hill. Team West could not get their bearings and Asian captain Amit hits the last 10-ball to get the win for her team.

Captain Amit gets lucky; clinches Team Asia’s victory

R. Amit1x2344 (Winner)
V. Villarealx1xxx1

Team Asia (10-7) Team West

In a fitting finale, Team Asia captain Rubilen Amit coasted through the last game of the tournament, 4-1, against Vivian Villareal to secure Team Asia’s second Queen’s Cup in a row.

The Filipina world champion put on a great start in the first frame, breaking and running out off a great shot on the 3-ball. Villareal tied things up when Amit missed on the 5-ball in the second.

However, the American continued to have difficulties on her game, making several misses. Amit pounced on the visibly frustrated Villareal taking the next three matches. In the final frame, the Asian skipper showed her great skills when she ran out the table getting two clusters of balls to break.


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

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2018 FIBA 3X3 World Cup

Chooks-to-Go President hopes to break PH Arena record come 3×3 World Cup



Last October 27, 2017, Game Seven of the PBA Governors’ Cup Finals that pitted 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 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 that was 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 team to win the championship.”

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Ilocos United takes leave from PFL



Another one bites the dust

After months of speculation, Ilocos United formally announced its 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 its 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 its PFL operations will fold for the time being, Ilocos will continue the grassroots programs it 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 aren’t a lot of 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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CJ Perez, Jaycee Marcelino in unison: D-League is a whole other level



After falling just two games short to cop 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 animal.

Going up against the veteran-laden Marinerong Pilipino Skippers, the Zark’s Burgers-backed squad had 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 however served as a wake-up call. Adjusting on the fly, Perez and Marcelino rallied the Jawbreakers back — even having 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 while the 24-year-old Perez added 19 points, five assists, two steals, and a block.

With their first game in the bag, the two and the rest of the Jawbreakers now have this 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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Renzo Subido to bring Marinerong Pilipino experience to UST



When Renzo Subido decided to skip out the University of Santo Tomas Growling Tigers’ UAAP Season 80 campaign, he had only one thing in mind: to improve on his craft. And he was able to do so under coach Koy Banal in the Marinerong Pilipino Skippers.

After the AMA Online Education Titans had a quick end to their campaign during the 2017 Foundation Cup, the 5-foot-9 floor general was immediately picked up by Marinerong Pilipino for the playoffs. Liking his style of play, he was again tapped for the 2018 Aspirants Cup.

And he showed a lot of growth from then, leading the Skippers to a 94-92 victory over fellow contenders Zark’s Jawbreakers. The 21-year-old tallied 20 points, three rebounds, and five assists while knocking down the crucial free throws to seal off the Lyceum-backed team.

“It was a good win for us. We’re happy that we won the game because it’s a good way to start the conference,” beamed Subido. “I’ve played against Lyceum in the past so I had familiarity with how they play.

“It was a good experience for us.”

Expectations are high for Marinerong Pilipino this conference as they are pegged as their blend of veterans and young guns are seen too overwhelming for the rest of the field. Still, Subido knows that it will be a tough climb as the other teams, especially the collegiate-based squads, have familiarity on their side.

“We’re taking it one game at a time but the goal is to win the championship,” he said. “But we know that it’s not going to be easy since we are going up against the top collegiate teams.

“So we’re just going to go all out every game.”

Besides winning the championship, Subido is on a personal mission. Being one of the seniors for the Growling Tigers next season, he hopes to learn to become a better leader for next season.

“I want to become a better leader. I know that everything I can learn this conference, I can bring to UST,” Subido expressed.

“For all I can see, coach Aldin [Ayo] is a guard-oriented coach. So I’m using all the experience I get here in Marinero, I’ll bring it to UST.”

For sure, Subido wants to make up for lost time.

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