Canlubang takes lead in 63rd PAL Interclub

Bacolod—Canlubang took the lead and the spotlight at the 63rd Philippine Airlines (PAL) Interclub on Friday, one day after The Country Club grabbed the second lead in the premiere championship division at the Bacolod Golf and Country Club.

Jessie Balasabas and rookie Ruperto Zaragosa III churned out 35 points apiece, Art Arbole backed up with a 34 and Jhonel Ababa supported with a 33 to add up to defending champion Canlubang’s 137 for the day and 403 total in 54 holes.

“We’re up but The Country Club has a lot of firepower left,” said Canlubang captain Luigi Yulo, whose wards are seeking a fifth straight title.

Albin Engino, Mhark Fernando, Jobim Carlos, Abe Rosal and Paul Echavez are in the line-up of Canlubang in the last 18 will be played today at the par-70 Marapara layout of the Negros Golf and Country Club.

The Country Club, the challenger who went up by two Thursday, was led by the 37 of Zanie Boy Gialon, 34 of Fil-Am Carl Santos Ocampo, 28 of hometown bet Edwin Madrileño and 25 of Dante Becierra for the team’s 124 output and 392 overall.

“It was a good thing Carl (Ocampo) delivered again.  If not, we would have been down bigger than this,” said TCC captain Freddie Mendoza.

Although The Country Club faces a big 11-point deficit, it can still battle back in the final 18 the same way Luisita crawled back from 12 points down to win by one over Manila Southwoods back in 1998.

And judging with the roster which includes Tonlits Asistio, Rufino Bayron, Peter Villaber, JR Tanpinco and Dino Villanueva, at the Negros Occidental Golf and Country Club, TCC’s opportunity of catching is highly probable.

“I’m pinning my hopes on these guys.  They are a very strong bunch and I believe they can provide the scoring we need on the last day.  We are still very much in the tournament,” Mendoza also said.

The 63rd PAL Interclub is presented by platinum sponsors Airbus, Boeing, 105.1 Crossover and Radio Mindanao Network.  Major sponsors are Action Asia, GE Aviation, MTV Philippines, People Asia and Royal Caribbean.

The corporate backers are Business Mirror, Philippine Graphic, http://www.philstar.com, Sabre Airline Solutions/Sabre Travel Network and Resort World Manila.  Century Park Hotel, DWWW 774 AM, Panay News, Master Card and Thales Aerospace are minor patrons.(pr)

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