Tambalque repels Wahing; Gotiong cruises in JPGT Visayas

BACOLOD CITY – Patrick Tambalque and Dominique Gotiong delivered standout final round performances to spike their respective title runs in the 16-18 age category of the ICTSI Junior Philippine Golf Tour Visayas Series in Murcia, Binitin here yesterday (Thursday).

While Gotiong maintained a commanding lead throughout the girls’ division, Tambalque faced a challenging journey in the boys’ class, overcoming a tough competition from Simon Wahing with a gritty even-par 70 to clinch a six-stroke victory on a seven-over 287 total at the Bacolod Golf and Country Club.

“Overall, I played very good, made birdies I didn’t expect,” said Tambalque with a sense of accomplishment. His game was a delicate blend of successes and setbacks, as he managed to score four birdies, offsetting an equal number of bogeys.

The 16-year-old Tambalque viewed the experience as a valuable lesson. “It’s a good learning experience. I learned how to be patient – even if I made a mistake, there is still a chance to recover,” he said, emphasizing the importance of perseverance.

Earlier, Gotiong made a successful JPGT debut with an 86 for a total of 331, finishing 18 strokes ahead of Iloilo leg winner Rhiena Sinfuego, who scored a 349 after an 87. Breanna Rojas shot a 99 and placed third with a 400.

However, Gotiong battled more than just the challenges of the course. “I played really bad because I was tired,” she admitted, her voice tinged with fatigue. Despite not feeling her best, she found pride in her effort.

“But I’m proud of what I did because I tried my best even though I wasn’t feeling well,” she said.

Gotiong confirmed her participation in the Negros tournament next week, determined to give her best performance. She expressed heartfelt gratitude for the unwavering support of her parents, especially her father. “He helped me a lot with my game and he’s my biggest supporter,” she said.

Tambalque initially struggled to edge past Wahing and twin brothers Paul and Rey Oro in the first two days but managed to build a three-stroke cushion in the pivotal round Wednesday, posting the tournament’s only under-par round with a 69.

He aimed to improve with a two-under frontside card in the final round, extending his lead over Wahing by four strokes. However, the course and the competition began to challenge him.

He bogeyed the tricky par-3 No. 10 after pulling his tee-shot but conceded just one stroke as Wahing missed his birdie attempt from eight feet. Despite the pressure, Tambalque displayed grace under pressure, matching Wahing’s pars in next four holes to stay in firm control.

A triple-bogey on the 15th all but dashed Wahing’s hopes, allowing Tambalque, who parred the par-5 hole, to regain control on his way to victory.

Wahing finished with a 73 for a 293, while John Paul Oro faltered with a 76 to place third at 298.

Meanwhile, the Negros Occidental Golf and Country Club will host the last Visayas leg starting Monday (July 1), promising intense competition among contenders for berths in the national finals of the nationwide series, which also includes a four-tournament swing in Mindanao next month. For details, contact PGTI’s Jhi Castillo at 0928-316-5678 or Shiela Salvania at 0968-311-4101.

While Gotiong, 16, fell short of her target four-over par score in the final round, she relished her victory despite posting her worst card in four days. The rising Cebuana star, who carded back-to-back 81s and pulled away with an 83 in the third round, aims to build on her triumph as she heads to the demanding Marapara layout in an effort to secure a spot in October’s finals of the circuit sponsored by ICTSI and organized by Pilipinas Golf Tournaments, Inc.

The other category winners in the second leg of the three-leg Visayas series, were Tiffany Bernardino and Nyito Tiongko (13-15), Zuri Bagaloyos and Race Manhit (10-12), and Eliana Mendoza and Kvan Alburo (8-9).

Two berths in each category of the four-division circuit are up for grabs in the Visayas and Mindanao series for the National Match Play Finals at The Country Club in Laguna in October.


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