BAGUIO CITY December 06 – Sand Miguel – Northern Cement came out with its gun ablazing as it outshot Manila Southwoods to win the premiere Fil-Championship crown of the 66th Fil-Am Golf Invitational presented by San Miguel at the Camp John Hay golf course, today, Dec. 5.
With Eddie Bagtas and Rupert Zaragoza coming in last for San Miguel and Southwoods taking the momentary lead, the duo made 39 each, the latter twice blasting at the sand trap of the 18th for a pick up in the Pal Stableford tournament, to win the most coveted title.
San Miguel ended with a four under 148 points and 544 total to beat the defending and eight time champion from Carmona, Cavite which made 144 for 539. The two teams were tied at the penultimate round where San Miguel clawed from three shots down.
Jelbert Gamolo finally showed his mettle as he came in with an even par 69 and 36 while the beanpole Lanz Uy chipped in a 34 for San Miguel which started the tournament five shots down.
Kristoffer Arevalo closed with a birdie and a four under 65 for 40, one of the two best scores for the day when wind started packing up. With the 37 of the steady Yuto Katsugarawa, the 35 of Ryan Monsalve and the 32 of Justin Quiban, Southwoods made an even par for 144.
“Wow, what a victory!” cried team captain Bobby Iñigo who watched Zaragoza struggle at the 18th but still the pint sized Zaragoza left his last year’s tormentor, Quiban, by a mile (37-32). Quiban beat him last year by a point.
“We played against the defending champion and we just won until the end which is a very close game,” added Iñigo, who thanked the full support of his bosses – Edgardo Cojuangco, Jr. and Ramon Ang. Inigo could be the happiest man there is after they won the seniors Fil Championship last week, not to mention the seniors Am Championship with Nueva Ecija.
“It is a team effort and we have been lucky to have a supportive team captain (Inigo),” said Bagtas, who was as cool as a cucumber in his match against Chepe Dulay, who did not count with his 23.
Bagtas was rested the first two days at the Baguio Country Club but came in to the CJH with full confidence when he shot 39 and with the 42 of Zaragoza, tied Southwoods.
Jobim Carlos turned in one of the best two scores of four under for 40 and helped Royal Northwoods to 137 and 514 total for third place denying the youngest squad of Kuisita’s a podium finish.
Carlos also beat Zaragoza in the individual title by a point with his 149, a five under, the second this year when he topped the latter in the amateur match play.
The 13 year old Joo Hyung Kim, made the team best 37, a one under, for the team’s 130 and 504 total.
Jun Plana had 31 and helped Souhtwoods to 111 for a 489 total and a seven point victory on Batangas Barakos.
Plana, who made the tournament best 43 on the opening day, had 30 from Ira Alido and a pair of 25s from Ivan Monsalve and Theody Pascual.
Batangas had the best score of 113 from the pair of 31s of Gary Sales and Michael Mendoza and the 29 and 22 of Ricky delos Reyes and Gerald Katigbak and Rudy Amata, the last did not count.
Batanags finished with 482 and virtually made it a two team event like the Fil division Championship.
“Our boys gave it their best, it was just unfortunate we did not get the breaks considering the caliber of our team,” said team captain Thirdy Escano.
“We shot an even par today and I think that is a very respectable score. I wish to convey my congratulations to San Miguel,” he added.
And like San Miguel last year, which finished third, Escano promised to come back next year and give the new champion a good fight.
Escano’s Team Sparta, on the other hand won the Am-A title at the BCC score after a closing round of 86 and 409 total for an 11 shot win on Summit Point.
Team Sparta got 25 from Alex Ignacio, 22 from Escano, 21 from Rading Decepida and 18 from Erwin Temena.
Summit closed with 91 and 398 total, while Villa Cacho – Benlife had 84 and 383 tal as the two finished second and third, respectively.
Darwin of Australia had a closing round of 109 for 418 points and an 18 point victory over Silicon Valley Golfers Link I which closed with 102 and 400 points. Rural Bankers made 105 and 398 to finish third.
Philippine Navy had 83 and 348 total to win the Fil D crown by eight points over Greenwater Meadows which had a 79 and 340 total. Uragun Golf B had 88 and 338 for third place.
Baguio City golf team II made 62 for 317 and an eight point victory in Am D over Isabela Golf Club – Leaders which had a fourth day total of 72 and 309. Ultraflite Golf Club I made 56 and 296 for third place.