Gialon nips Lascuña, tops Negros Classic
Philippine Daily Inquirer
BACOLOD—Rookie pro Zanie Boy Gialon needed only a tap-in par on the par-3 No. 8 to edge Antonio Lascuña in a playoff yesterday and rule the rain-shortened P1 million ICTSI Negros Occidental Classic at the Negros Occidental Golf and Country Club here.
Heavy rains rendered the par-70 layout unplayable, forcing the organizing Pilipinas Golf Tournaments, Inc. to cancel the final round of the 54-hole event and hold a playoff between Gialon and Lascuña, who finished tied for the lead at 134 after 36 holes of play.
“The rains were super strong and the course condition was unplayable—with soaked fairways and flooded greens. They played the par-3 for the playoff in the rain,” said PGTI general manager Colo Ventosa.
Gialon, 22, showed his mettle against the veteran Lascuña in sudden death, landing his 6-iron to within 20 feet while Lascuña was short of the green. Lascuña chipped to within eight feet then missed the par putt while Gialon tapped in for his par after barely missing his birdie try.
“I did not expect to win but I hit a good shot and coach (Tony) misfired,” said Gialon in Filipino after nailing his breakthrough victory since turning pro last February.
“I was prepared to go 18 holes but the course was unplayable. But I’ll take this win, this will surely boost my confidence,” said the former mainstay of the ICTSI amateur squad of coach Bong Lopez who missed the cut in his first two pro tournaments—the Philippine Open and the ICTSI Splendido Classic—but rebounded in the next four legs of the ICTSI PGT, finishing joint seventh at Sherwood Classic.
He pocketed P200,000 and vowed to go for a follow up in next week’s ICTSI Iloilo Golf Challenge at Sta. Barbara.
Lascuña settled for P120,000, raising his front-running earnings to P1,223,750 in the Order of Merit but absorbing his second straight playoff setback after losing to Robert Pactolerin in a four-hole playoff last year.