Rising Suns whip Navy, seize solo lead

Air Force’s Maika Ortiz (right) foils FEU’s Marie Simborio’s attack as Jude Ann Caballejo tries to provide help during their Shakey’s V-League Open Conference clash.
Air Force’s Maika Ortiz (right) foils FEU’s Marie Simborio’s attack as Jude Ann Caballejo tries to provide help during their Shakey’s V-League Open Conference clash.


Cagayan made short work of a listless Phl Navy side, 25-12, 25-12, 25-16, to wrest the solo lead even as Air Force bounced back with a similar straight-set win over Far Eastern U in the Shakey’s V-League Season 10 Open Conference at The Arena in San Juan yesterday.

Aiza Maizo and Angeli Tabaquero took turns in attack and combined for 25 hits, including 22 on kills while Wenneth Eulalio and Thai reinforcement Kannika Tipachot scattered 14 points apiece to power the Rising Suns to their third straight victory.
The Rising Suns had a virtual workout against the debuting Lady Sailors, pumping in 47 kills from 39 excellent sets spearheaded by Relea Saet. Navy only produced a measly 18-attack effort and drew just 18 excellent sets
Earlier, Air Force leaned on its superb reception and its power game to down FEU, 25-20, 25-21, 25-19, and snap a two-game skid in the season-ending conference sponsored by Shakey’s.
Judy Ann Caballejo, a UST standout, banged away 12 hits she laced with three service aces and two blocks, carrying the Air Women past the Lady Tams in a duel of winless teams.
“She showed in the game that she’s a force to reckon with,” said Air Force coach Clarence Esteban in Filipino of Caballejo.
Maika Ortiz blocked Marie Toni Basas’ attack to wrap up the 78-minute encounter with the former finishing nine points, one behind the crisp-hitting Joy Cases, who unloaded all her points on kills.
Esteban liked how they received the ball.
“We received well, that started it all for us,” he said.
FEU, mentored by Shaq delos Santos, threatened last at 15-17 after stringing four straight points on Air Force’s miscues but Cases took over by scoring four of her team’s last eight points.
The Air Women also drew strength from Wendy Semana’s superb set plays to overpower the Lady Tams, 42-30, with Cases and Ortiz combining for 18 kills. Semana, who produced 22 excellent sets, also finished with eight points.
The victory was Air Force’s first after dropping its first two games to Cagayan Province and Army last week, putting it back in the hunt for one of the six quarterfinal berths in the tournament backed by Mikasa and Accel.
Meanwhile, the Air Force-FEU match will be shown on GMA News TV Channel 11 at 1 p.m. today while the Navy-Cagayan duel, being played at presstime, will be telecast on Monday, according to the organizing Sports Vision.
Skipper Liza de Ramos added seven hits while Jennifer Manzano and Rhea Dimaculangan chipped in four and two, respectively, for the Air Women, who also toughened up on defense after a strong start in each of the three sets.
FEU, which dragged Meralco into a five-setter before losing steam in the decider, fell to 0-3, its bid to advance diminishing each game. The Lady Tams will take a week-long break to further hone up but will face a fancied Cagayan Province side when they return to action next Friday.(pr)

Cyna cruises to 8-shot romp over Agojo

Cyna Rodriguez marked her pro debut in smashing fashion, outclassing the field with a closing 72 for a whopping eight-shot victory over Jayvie Agojo in the third leg of the ICTSI Ladies Philippine Golf Tour at Eagle Ridge Golf and Country Club in Gen. Trias, Cavite yesterday.
Enjoying a big eight-shot cushion after two rounds, Rodriguez played pressure-free all day, settling for pars in the first eight holes and mixing two birdies against two bogeys in the next 10 for a 37-35 round at the Aoki layout.
She missed completing a run of under-par rounds in three days after a 69 and 71 but succeeded in nailing the victory right in her maiden stint on the pro circuit with a four-under 212 total.
“I never became over confident. I still took it hole by hole not thinking of the big lead,” said Rodriguez, who virtually wrapped it all up with an eight-shot lead over Agojo and Apple Fudolin after 36 holes Thursday.
“But it feels good playing and battling with friends and teammates for the crown. And I’m very happy to win on my pro debut,” added the former Philippine Ladies Open champion and last year’s Hong Kong Ladies Amateur Open winner who joined the pros after winning her last two amateur titles back-to-back in Long Beach and Sacramento last month.
Rodriguez produced the only under-par total in the tournament put up by International Container Terminal Services, Inc. and pocketed the top purse of P100,000 handed over by ICTSI Public Relations head Narlene Soriano during awards rites.
Her win also matched Dottie Ardina’s eight-shot victory over Chihiro Ikeda in the second leg of the circuit in Canlubang. Ardina also topped the first leg at The Country Club, coming from behind to beat amateurs Princess Superal and Rodriguez last May.
Agojo recovered from two early bogeys with two birdies in the last 12 holes to likewise card an even par 72 and clinch runner-up honors in the P500,000 event with a 220 worth P70,000 in the event backed by Nike Golf, Pacsports, Gatorade, Sharp and Custom Clubmakers.
Apple Fudolin likewise turned in her best finish thus far in the new ladies pro circuit shooting a 73 for third at 221. She took home P45,000.
Anya Tanpinco shot the only under-par round of 71 in scorching heat and salvaged fourth place with a 224 while Sarah Ababa made a 75 and wound up joint fifth at 232 with former Phl Ladies Open winner Heidi Chua, who made a 79.
Reb Bareng and Lucy Landicho shared seventh place at 235 after a 79 and 73, respectively, while Lovelynn Guioguio limped with a second 81 for ninth at 236 and Tracy Que ended up 10th at 239 after a 78.(pr)