MANILA, Philippines – Teenage sensation Maxine Esteban powered Ateneo in winning its first women's crown in 12 years while University of the East retained the UAAP fencing men's championship as the UAAP Season 81 fencing tournament came to a close on Sunday, November 25, at the Victoria Sports Tower in Quezon City.
Esteban's gold medal triumphs in the individual foil and saber events, as well as the Lady Eagles' victory in the team foil brought the Katipunan-based fencers back on top of the women's division.
Her sensational run allowed Esteban to capture the Rookie-MVP award as Ateneo bagged its second title overall, and the first since 2006 behind sisters Faye and Veeg Garcia. It also ended UE's amazing 11-year run in the throne.
University of Santo Tomas' lady fencers finished second place with two golds courtesy of Marielle Peralta in the individual epee, and the team foil of Peralta, Andrea Bernal, Pauline Bernarte and Mira Dorimon. The Tigresses also won a silver and two bronzes.
The Lady Warriors finally won a gold in the 4th day, as Carla Arreza, Nicole Cortey, Joy Javinar and Marry Jae Lonzaga topped the team saber category. UE also went home with three silvers and three bronzes to settle for third.
The team foil of CJ Concepcion, JC Concepcion, Sammuel Tranquilan and Xavier Arabaca won the gold on the final day of the competition that served as an icing for the Red Warriors to extend their reign to a seventh straight year.
The Recto-based fencers have already annexed the crown Saturday, as the team saber of CJ Concepcion, JC Concepcion, Tranquilan and Jinro Villanueva emerged triumphant.
UE, which also captured 3 silver medals, also clinched a league-best 13th title overall.
The Red Warriors earlier swept the individual events, as CJ Concepcion nabbed the saber gold while Tranquilan topped the epee and foil events.
For the second straight season, Tranquilan was named the MVP.
De La Salle's gold medal quest in men’s team epee last Saturday was enough to claim second place to go with a silver and three bronzes, while Ateneo's one-silver, five-bronze haul sealed third spot.
Green Fencer Darryl Lumahan was named the top rookie.
In the juniors division, UE achieved another golden double with Samantha Catantan and Prince John Francis Felipe claiming the season MVP awards in the girls and boys division once more.
The Junior Warriors achieved an eight-peat in the girls division, while the boys streaked to their ninth straight championship. UST's Patricia Daradar was the girls Rookie of the Year winner.
Irebu shines in UST's drubbing of Adamson
Grace Irebu had a monster outing of 28 points, 20 rebounds and 3 blocks as University of Santo Tomas weathered a late Adamson University comeback to carve out a 78-69 win Sunday, November 25, in the UAAP Season 81 women's basketball step-ladder semifinals at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The Tigresses lost a 46-25 second half lead but displayed tremendous poise down the stretch to eliminate the Lady Falcons out of the playoff picture.
Fourth-ranked UST will take on No. 2 Far Eastern University for the remaining Finals berth on Wednesday, November 28 at the Big Dome.
The step-ladder survivor take on five-peat seeking National University in the best-of-three championship starting next week.
Irebu simply imposed her will in the middle in 36 minutes of action, as Adamson University could not find ways to stop the Congolese center.
"Grace proved so many times, especially in the knockout games, that she's the MVP of Season 81. Hopefully, she will get better every year," said UST mentor Haydee Ong.
Sai Larosa also delivered with 17 points, 8 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals for the Tigressed. UST has won three straight do-or-die matched, including two against De La Salle.
Nathalie Prado had 34 points and 10 boards for the Lady Falcons, who finished 4th in former player Ewon Arayi's first year as coach.
UST (78) – Irebu 28, Larosa 17, Capilit 13, Rivera 6, Aujero 5, Portillo 5, Ferrer 4, Tacatac 0, Magat 0, Sangalang 0, Gonzales 0.
AdU (69) – Prado 34, Alcoy 9, Camacho 9, Cacho 6, Araja 5, Tandaan 3, Bilbao 2, Aciro 1, Cabug 0, Osano 0.
Quarterscores: 22-14, 43-25, 60-47, 78-69.
UAAP juniors volleyball: NU, DLSZ girls finish elims at 1-2
National University ended a two-game slide as the reigning girls champions overpowered University of the East, 25-18, 25-18, 25-13, Sunday, November 25, in the UAAP Season 81 high school volleyball tournament at the FEU-Diliman Gym.
Faith Nisperos had 6 service aces to finish with 11 points while reigning MVP Mhicaela Belen added 9 hits and 5 digs to help the Bullpups to finish the eliminations as the No. 1 team with a 10-2 card.
Angel Canino had 16 hits while Alleiah Malaluan fired 2 service aces to also finish with 16 points to go with 8 digs as De La Salle-Zobel also ended up with 10 wins and two losses following a 25-22, 25-15, 23-25, 25-16 victory over Far Eastern University-Diliman.
But the Junior Lady Spikers will settle for the No. 2 spot due to less match points.
Renee Lou Penafiel had 3 service aces for a 17-point outing while Imee Hernandez added 16 points and seven digs as University of Santo Tomas bested Adamson University, 25-23, 25-22, 25-18.
The Junior Tigresses clinched the No. 3 ranking in the Final Four with a 8-4 slate, while the Baby Falcons wound up fourth at 7-5.
In the semifinals, NU and De La Salle-Zobel will hold twice-to-beat incentives against Adamson University and UST, respectively.
In the boys division, FEU-Diliman foiled NU's bid to jump straight to the Finals with a 21-25, 25-23, 25-22, 25-21 win.
Titleholder UST eliminated UE, 19-25, 25-18, 25-16, 25-7, allowing Adamson University, which turned back De La Salle-Zobel, 25-19, 25-17, 21-25, 25-15, to clinch the last Final Four berth.
The Bullpups ended up at 13-1 and will hold the twice-to-beat advantage against the 9-5 Baby Falcons in the Final Four. The Tiger Cubs and the Baby Tamaraws play in the other pairing, although both teams will go up in the playoff for the remaining semis incentive as they ended up tied at 10-4.
Ateneo nipped UP Integrated School, 24-26, 25-23, 25-14, 24-26, 15-13, for its second win of the season.
UAAP juniors football: Eaglets post 2nd win
Ateneo sustained its solid form in a 4-1 win over University of Santo Tomas Sunday, November 25, in the UAAP Season 81 juniors football tournament at the Rizal Memorial Stadium.
Luard Abaa and Kendryx Soriano scored first-half goals, while Andy Roxas and Austin Basconcillio also entered the scoresheet for the Blue Eaglets.
Following up its opening 1-0 victory over De La Salle-Zobel, Ateneo solidified its hold of the top of the table with 6 points.
Defending 8-time champion Far Eastern University-Diliman and National University battled to a goalless draw in the other match.
The Bullpups, who will face the Eaglets on Sunday, moved up at 4 points in second place.
UAAP Media clinches historic title in Goodwill Games
Photo from UAAP release
History was on the side of the UAAP Media as the Chooks-to-Go Scribes captured the UAAP Season 81 Goodwill Games championship after outlasting Table and Stats, 116-114, in the Finals on Sunday, November 25, at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Damie Cuntapay hit the big shots late as the San Beda Red Lion drained 3 straight baseline jumpers that put the sportswriters ahead in the final minute.
But defense truly wins championships as the Scribes bottled up sweet-shooting Rendell Senining in the closing seconds as NBTC's Anton Altamirano secured the title-clinching steal as time expired.
J-Jay Alejandro was a true shot in the arm for UAAP Media with his 12-of-25 shooting from downtown to lead the charge with 48 points, 10 rebounds, and 6 assists to avenge his alma mater and this year's third-placers National University.
Roy Cayanan continued to be the stabilizing force for the Scribes with 26 points, 7 boards, 4 dimes, and two steals, while Cuntapay was rock solid down low with 20 points and 15 rebounds, alongside an assist and a block.
Altamirano was a do-it-all star for UAAP Media with 8 points, 9 assists, 6 rebounds, and 2 steals, as Marlon Borre had 8 points and 3 boards in the win.
Also making significant contributions for the Scribes were Tiebreaker Times' Arnold Cagang and Paolo Poblador, Tribune's Bryan Ulanday, Spin.ph's Christian Jacinto and Karlo Sacamos, Manila Bulletin's Jonas Terrado, ESPN5's AJ Bolando, Rappler's Delfin Dioquino, and Manila Times' Josef Ramos, whose layup in the second quarter was wildly celebrated by the raucous UAAP Media bench.
It was the first Goodwill Games championship for the UAAP Media after an immaculate 5-0 romp this season.The sportswriters have also gone unbeaten through two years and extended their mastery of fierce rival Table and Stats to 7 games now.
The Scribes also got huge boost from their fringe players in playing-team manager Mel Macasaquit of Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas, Spin.ph's Reuben Terrado, Randolph Leongson and Lance Agcaoili, ESPN5's Yo Sarmenta, Tribune's Joel Orellana, ABS-CBN Sports' Mark Escarlote, Inquirer's Bong Lozada and Denison Dalupang, Business Mirror's Ramon Bonilla, Manila Times' Jeremiah Sevilla.
Ken Bono powered Table and Stats in the runner-up finish with 37 points, 24 rebounds, 7 assists, and 4 blocks, while Tonino Gonzaga chipped in 26 points and 10 boards.
UAAP commissioner Junel Baculi also suited up for Table and Stats, which was largely reinforced by FEU Team B players and was handled by Goodwill Games commissioner Pong Ducanes.
UAAP MEDIA 116 – Alejandro 48, Cayanan 26, Cuntapay 20, Altamirano 8, Borre 8, Cagang 2, Ulanday 2, Ramos 2, Jacinto 0, Terrado 0, Sacamos 0, Bolando 0, Poblador 0, Dioquino 0.
TABLE AND STATS 114 – Bono 37, Gonzaga 26, Gloria 25, Senining 24, Sarmiento 2, Baculi 0, Flores 0, Paguila 0, Sta. Ana 0.
Quarters: 33-32, 53-61, 86-85, 116-114.