MCLEEN GOMERA endured a couple of quarterfinal scares and went on to string a pair of victories to dominate the Palawan Pawnshop-Palawan Express Pera Padala San Carlos City national juniors championships at the SJRI Centermall courts in Negros Occidental last Monday.
Gomera repelled Herman Illusorio, 4-5(1), 4-1, 10-7, in the Last 8 phase of the boys’ 16-and-under play then trounced Carl Miasco, 6-2, 6-3, before beating Kenzo Brodeth via the same scoreline in the finals of the Group I tournament held in conjunction with the Pintaflores Festival celebrations.
The Bacolod, Lanao del Norte ace, who also swept two titles in the recent Buglasan Festival in Dumaguete, likewise needed to fight back from a set down to defuse Alekzander Po, 2-4, 4-2, 12-10, in the 18-under quarters. He then subdued Illusorio, 7-6(4), 6-3, before whipping Hans Cabellon, 6-2, 6-3, to complete another twin kill and bag the MVP honors in the country’s longest talent-search put up by Palawan Pawnshop president and CEO Bobby Castro.
Ormoc City’s Kimi Brodeth, meanwhile, failed to complete a third straight “double” after sweeping the 16- and 18-undeer titles at home and in Baybay, ruling the premier division with a 6-3, 6-4 victory over Bacolod City’s Hannah Divinagracia but yielding a 5-7, 4-6, 9-11 decision to the latter in the 16-under finals.
Other winners were Valencia, Negros Oriental’s Shara Paliwag and Kenzo Brodeth of Ormoc in 14-under, and Ma. Caroliean Fiel, also from Ormoc, and Matthew Morris, from Valencia, in 12-under class of the event presented by Dunlop and hosted by San Carlos City Mayor Renato Gustilo and Vice Mayor Christopher Carmona.
Paliwag hacked out a pair of tough three-setters, nipping Therese Gauran, 6-4, 6-7(4), 10-4, in the semis then edging Kate Imalay, 1-6, 6-0, 10-8, in the finals, while Kenzo Brodeth held off Kurt Barrera from Tayasan, Negros Oriental, 6-2, 7-5; and Fiel racked up another crown via a 6-4, 2-6, 11-9 win over Mae Castro, while the third-ranked Morris upended top seed David Sepulveda, 7-6(1), 6-4, in the tournament backed by ProtekTODO, PalawanPay, Unified Tennis Philippines and Universal Tennis Rating.