The Laguna Heroes chess team bagged back to back victories, Wednesday, March 17, 2021, in the 2021 Professional Chess Association of the Philippines (PCAP) All-Filipino tournament at chess.com.
Laguna took a firm hold at the top spot in the Northern Conference with 29-4 win-loss record together with San Juan Predators after dominating Isabela Knight Raiders and Manila Indios Bravos with scores of 20-1 and 17-4, respectively.
Grandmaster John Paul Gomez was the top scorer for the Heroes with six points—three against Lordwin Espiritu of Isabela and three against US master Ryan Dungca of Manila.
Grandmaster Rogelio “Banjo” Barcenilla Jr. defeated Alvin Aguinaldo (blitz) and Servillano Obana Jr. (rapid) of Isabela. He yielded to Grandmaster Julio Catalino Sadorra of Manila in blitz but bounced back in the rapid play.
Woman National Master Jean Karen Enriquez, Vince Angelo Medina and Kimuel Aaron Lorenzo also contributed to Laguna’s impressive performance. The team is supported by Greatech Philippines, Inc., SDC Global Choice, Jolly Smile Dental Clinic and Rotary Club of Nuvali.
Enriquez won her match against Genlaiza Bagorio (blitz) and Sheryll Andres Bordon (rapid) of Isabela and Woman Candidate Master Mira Mirano of Manila. Medina blasted Anwar Cabugatan of Isabela and Candidate Master Genghis Imperial of Manila while Lorenzo blanked Manolito Manaois of Isabela and Arena Grandmaster Glenn Lemen of Manila.
Fide Master Austin Jacob Literatus beat National Master Gerardo Cabellon of Isabela, lost to International Master John Marvin Miciano of Manila in the blitz portion but prevailed in the rapid format.
Fide Master Jose Efren Bagamasbad, on the other hand, nipped Francis Cabe of Isabela in the blitz event but split the point in the rapid play. He beat International Master Chris Ramayrat of Manila in the blitz portion but lost in the rapid game.
According to Arena Grandmaster Dr. Alfredo “Fred” Paez, Laguna bested Isabela, 7-0, 13-1 and Manila, 5-2, 12-2, in the blitz and rapid format.
“Manila is indeed a strong team and winning 17-4 is a great feat. We didn’t expect to win by such wide margin. The Laguna Heroes really manifested great character tonight.” said Arena Grandmaster Dr. Alfredo “Fred” Paez, one of the four co-team owners of the Laguna Heroes that include Benjamin Dy, Jonathan Mamaril and David Nithyananthan.
The Laguna Team will next face Quezon City Simba’s Tribe on Saturday, March 20, 2021.
Other members of the winning Laguna team are Candidate Master Arjie Bayangat, Dy, Mamaril and Nithyananthan.