Abe Rosal dominated the field with a one-under 71, battling back from two down to post a huge nine-stroke lead over erstwhile leader Dave Hernandez in the second round of the Philippine Seniors and Mid-Amateur Open Championships in Lipa City, Batangas on Thursday.
Rosal, a former mainstay of the Canlubang team in the Interclub, birdied two of the first four holes and went to gun down two more against a bogey and a double-bogey for a 36-35 that proved too much for a field that struggled at Mt. Malarayat’s composite course.
Counting his first round score of 74, Rosal assembled a 145 aggregate and moved closer to nailing his first seniors Open crown as Hernandez shot 10 strokes worse than his opening 72, his 82 dropping him to second at 154.
Abe Avena, who ruled last year’s staging of the event held as part of the PLDT Group National Amateur Golf Tour and backed by the MVP Sports Foundation, Cignal, Metro Pacific Investments, Srixon and Cobra, pooled a 155 after an 80 while former national champion Rolly Viray carded a 76 and moved to joint fourth with Jose Mari Hechanova, who turned in a 78, at 158.
Mike Besa made an 81 for sixth at 165 while Japanese Kato Sengyo had an 87 for a 168 followed by Ernesto Lim (85-174) and Albert Que (94-185) as Tommy Manotoc withdrew after a 75.
Meanwhile, defending champion Gerald Katigbak fired a 73 and took a three-shot lead over Earel Gardiola with Augusto de Jesus carding a 77 at the start of the Mid Amateur Open division of the annual event organized and conducted by the National Golf Association of the Philippines and supported by hole-in-one sponsor Bushnell Prox2 Rangefinder.
Don Petil and Ivan Monsalve matched one-over 73s with the former keeping a one-shot edge at 146 and Jolo Magcalayo falling way behind at third at 154 after a 79. Jonas Magcalayo also made a 78 for a 157 while Korean Oh Sang Jin skied to an 83 for a 162.
Korean Shin Seo Yun, on the other hand, pulled away in the women’s Elite Open, matching par 72 for a 147 and a four-stroke lead over compatriot Kwon Seo Yon and local bet Margiela Atienza, who both shot 75s for 151s. Kristine Torralba failed to rebound and shot a second 77 for a 154.
In other Mid-Am classes, Philip Lindog carded a 76 and grabbed a one-stroke lead over Jerome Hernandez (77) with Walter Lacuesta in third with an 81 in Division I; while Boom Coscolluela made an 87 for a two-shot edge over John Marc Andaya (89) and Ferdinand Garana (89) in Division II.
In seniors play, Carlos Bathan shot an 81 for a one-stroke lead over Allan Alegre (82) while Jose Mandocdoc and Armando Lustre shared third place with 84s in Division I; Butch Bakunawa turned in a 79 for a one-shot margin over Philip del Carmen, who had an 82, with Lito Flores and Tsutomo Fujita made 83s for joint third in Division II; and Bong Sison, Katy Katigbak and Francis Bawal shared the lead with 81s.