Mona Sarines outdueled Precious Zaragosa in an intense duel of skills and nerves. She dominated the putting challenge and secured second place in both chipping and driving.
Her performance let her to claim top honors in the girls’ 11-12 category of the Junior PGT 2023 Series at the Sta. Elena Golf and Country Club in Laguna last Sunday.
Participating in this type of skills contest for the first time, Sarines proved herself more than capable, amassing 115 points. Her breakdown included 55, 32, and 28 points in putting, chipping, and driving, respectively.
This result allowed her to surpass Zaragosa, who earned 113 points, taking first place in driving (46) and securing second and third place in putting (46) and chipping (21), respectively.
Tiffany Bernardino scored a total of 91 points, with an impressive 36 points in chipping, securing her third place in Round 4 of the series organized by Pilipinas Golf Tournaments, Inc.
“It was our first experience being in a drive, chip, and putt competition, speaking for myself and my three junior golfer kids (Mona, Lisa, and Vito),” said Arminda Sarines. “Being used to the usual 18-hole tournament (and the US College Golf 36-hole rounds), this DCP provides a different twist – it is not only fun but also exciting, or as the kids would describe, ‘exhilarating.’”
“The energy was so welcoming; everyone was focused on the specific golf task. The rewarding outcome after the game was that all the kids were happily playing with each other, running around, and being kids again,” she added.
Roman Ungco emerged as the top performer in driving, scoring 43 points. He secured second place in chipping (40) and placed third in putting (36), enabling him to clinch the boys’ 11-12 trophy with a total of 119 points.
This victory followed his recent triumph in the 18-hole stroke play format at Valley Golf last month.
Aenzo Sulaik excelled in the chipping challenge, earning 50 points, and came in second in putting (37), resulting in a total of 104 points. This performance secured him second place, just behind Ungco.
Javier Bautista contributed an 83-point performance, earning him third place. He shared the top spot with Lujo Gomez in putting (40 points) and secured third place in driving (32).
Also shining in the one-day tournament sponsored by ICTSI, as part of its commitment to enhancing junior golf, were Makayla Verano and Vito Sarines, winners of the girls’ and boys’ 9-10 age groups, respectively.
In addition, Maria Angelica Bañez secured the girls’ 15-18 title with 116 points, surpassing Korean Ji Won Lee’s score of 81 points.
Verano excelled in putting (51 points) and secured second place in driving (28), sharing third place with Quincy Pilac in chipping (21). Her impressive performance led to a total score of 100 points, giving her a five-point lead over Pilac, who tied for first with Maurysse Abalos in driving (34) and secured a runner-up finish in putting (40), totaling 95 points.
Abalos, who also emerged as the solo winner in chipping (27), secured third place with 81 points.
On the other hand, Vito Sarines dominated the driving challenge, earning 56 points. He shared second place with Jose Luis Espinosa in chipping (45), resulting in a total score of 126 points, securing a 23-point lead over Espinosa.
Espinosa excelled in the putting contest (35) and concluded with a total of 103 points.
Race Manhit, who previously topped the skills challenge at Mt. Malarayat in June, settled for third place with 98 points. He earned a runner-up finish in driving (43) and secured third place in chipping (35).
Meanwhile, the course-hopping series will return to Mount Malarayat in Lipa City on Monday, August 28th, with the action shifting to an 18-hole stroke play for boys’ and girls’ 9-12 categories, as well as girls’ 13-14.
Taal Splendido will host the series for the first time on September 17th, featuring the boys’ and girls’ 15-18 division and boys’ 13-14 class, to be played under the 18-hole stroke play format.