Bacolod—Manila Southwoods proved to be a cut above the rest as it reclaimed the Philippine Airlines Men’s Interclub title with a performance that left the Championship division field eating its dust.
Yuto Katsuragawa got back at tree-lined Marapara with a three-under-par 67 worth 39 points, fellow Japanese Aguri Iwasaki fired 36 and Santino Laurel and Josh Jorge accounted for 34 and 33, respectively as the Carmona-based squad closed out with a whopping 142 points for 504 overall and a 22-point win over Del Monte.
“I’m just so happy that the boys responded the way they did,” non-playing Southwoods skipper Thirdy Escano said after steering the squad back to the top and putting that sorry loss to Cebu CC last year behind.
“We were really expecting to win (this year), and what made it doubly joyful was how the players bounced back today,” Escano added, referring to woeful scores that Katsuragawa, with 30, Laurel (21) and Jorge (28), submitted in a quiet opening round on Wednesday.
So in-tune was Southwoods that it discarded the 30 of the veteran Jun Jun Plana in winning for the fifth time in the last six years.
Dan Cruz scored 37 points and Jhondie Quibol 32 to lead Luisita’s final round 126, as Del Monte checked in third, 26 points behind the Luisitans after a 120 led by the 33 points of the veteran Raul Minoza.
Former US NCAA standout Jude Eustaquio assembled 34 points over at Binitin in Murcia town as Forest Hills closed out with 122 for a one-point win over Tagaytay Highlands in the rain-shortened and hotly-contested Founders Division.
Bong Brobio had 30 points and Dennis Nicomedes and Rodel Mangulabnan chipped in with 29 apiece as Forest Hills tallied a 54-hole 356 total.
Junro Mamaril paced Tagaytay Highlands with 34 and Ale Stehmeier had 32 with Gabriel Macalaguim and former PBA player RJ Rizada shooting 31 and 28, respectively, to make up the squad’s 125.
Riviera Golf rallied with 130 points built around the 34 of Jek Mendoza for a 351 tally, three points ahead of dethroned overall champion Cebu Country Club, which managed just 123.
Hosted by Philippine Airlines, the international event is backed by platinum sponsors Asian Air Safari, Vanguard Radio Network, Fox Networks Group, Radio Mindanao Network, Inc., Asian Journal Publications Philippines, Inc., Auto Nation Group, Inc. (Mercedes Benz), and SMDC.
Major sponsors include The Boeing Company, University of Mindanao Broadcasting Network, Avolon Aerospace Singapore Pte Ltd, Manila Broadcasting Company, Primax Broadcasting, Rolls-Royce Singapore Pte Ltd, CIGNAL TV Inc., Travellers International Hotel Group Inc. (Resorts World), and Airbus.
Other supporters are Uniglobe Travelware Co., Inc. (The Travel Club), Philippine Manila Standard Publishing Inc. (Manila Standard), Officine Corporation, GE Aviation, SEDA Hotels, BDO Unibank, Smart Communications, Inc., People Asia Magazine, A+E Networks Asia (History), Allianz PNB Life, Phoenix Petroleum Philippines, Tanduay Brands, Rockwell Land Corporation, Petron Corporation, Splash Corporation, AB Heineken Philippines Inc., and Asia Brewery Inc. – Summit.
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