CARMONA, Cavite—Antonio Lascuña captured a second tournament this year with a wire-to-wire victory in the P2.5 million ICTSI Manila Southwoods Championship yesterday at the Legends layout here.
The 44-year-old from Davao fired a closing 4-under-par 68 for a 267 total, beating Jonel Ababa and teenager Miguel Tabuena by three strokes as he scored a repeat win in the event which was played at the adjacent Masters course last year.
Ababa fired a 65 and Tabuena had a 66, but the pint-sized duo failed to rattle Lascuña, who took a five-shot lead into the final 18 holes after rounds of 64, 68 and 67 in the first three days.
“I didn’t lose composure when they threatened,” Lascuña said in Filipino after Tabuena and Ababa came within two shots. “I just told myself not to commit mistakes,” added Lascuña, who finished with a 34-34 card.
Elmer Salvador and Frankie Minoza fired 66s and tied at 273, two shots ahead of the veteran Mars Pucay, who closed out with a 69, and the burly Orlan Sumcad, who submitted a 70.
Lascuña, whose first title this year came at Calatagan in Batangas, became the second man to defend a championship this year after Elmer Salvador’s repeat in the Aboitiz Invitational in Cebu a month ago.
He also snapped a string of five close calls after that win in Batangas.
Other backers of the event were Nike Golf, Srixon, Custom Clubmakers, Pacsports, Cleveland Golf, Callaway, Ping, Mizuno, Empire Golf and Sports Shop, FootJoy, Titleist, Sharp, BMW and Gergia Energy Foods.
Cassius Casas, in contention in the first three days, carded a 72 and faded to eighth place at 276, with Carl Santos-Ocampo, the champion at Midlands in Tagaytay, shooting a 68 for 277.
Gerald Rosales, who like Salvador won an all-Filipino edition of the Philippine Open, fired a 71 and rounded out the Top 10 at 278.
Ababa went 4-under after his first five holes with four straight birdies starting from No. 2. Tabuena, on the other hand, went 3-under in that span but Lascuña was able to keep a comfortable distance when he gunned down his first birdie on the fifth.
“If it was a different guy we were chasing, he would have folded up,” Tabuena said of Lascuña.