Miñoza, Engino survive trying day to tie for lead
Playing patient and having fun at this late stage of a storied career, Frankie Miñoza on Wednesday fired a two-under-par 68 to share the lead with Albin Engino after one round of the ICTSI Negros Occidental Golf Classic at Marapara where the last leg victory of the Bukidnon native came seven years ago.
“I just played it shot-by-shot and hole-by-hole. But it came out okay, so I’m so happy,” said Miñoza, who had all four of his birdies in a seven-hole span that bridged both nines. “I didn’t expect to go under (par). I’m just enjoying the game.”
Engino, meanwhile, birdied Nos. 6 and 9—his 15th and 18th, to rescue a 35-36 effort to join Miñoza in taking a one-shot lead over Ira Alido and Q-School medalist Hyun Ho-rho of South Korea and another shot ahead of an eight-man pack that returned 70s counting Antonio Lascuña and former Philippine Open champion Gerald Rosales.
The debuting former PH Team stalwarts struggled big time as the winds, humidity and trickiness of Marapara took a toll on them. Elee Bisera fired a 74, Gab Manotoc a 79 and Kristoffer Arevalo skied to an 84 over the tree-lined layout.
And it wasn’t only them, as Clyde Mondilla—who opened bogey-triple bogey-bogey—also fired a 74 with pretournament favorite Guido Van Der Valk of the Netherlands shooting a 75.
Van Der Valk, a long-time Philippine resident, had three doubles and two bogeys that went with just three birdies in a 40-35.
Meanwhile, Sarah Ababa hit all fairways and missed just three greens in shooting a 69 for a four-shot lead over Chanelle Avaricio and two others in the P875,000, 54-hole ladies event.
Harmie Constantino and Daniella Uy also shot 73s.