Surigao, Toledo post huge wins in PCAP

June 18, 2022 Ed Andaya 585 views

SOUTHERN Division teamsSurigao Fianchetto Checkmates and Toledo City Trojans and made their presence felt with inspiring upset victories over their Northern Division rivals in the 2022 PCAP GM Weslley So Cup chess championships last Wednesday.

Surigao, led by Lennon Hart Salgados and FM Vince Alaan, brought down inaugural All-Filipno champion Laguna Heroes, 15-6, and two-time champion San Juan Predators, 12.5-8.5, to boost their chances in the prestigious, 24-team tournament sponsored by San Miguel Corporation, Ayala Land and PCWorx.

Salgados and Alaan joined hands with Mariel Romero, NM Cyril Ortega and Antonio Chavez Jr. struck hardest in rapid chess to power the Checkmates over the GM Rogelio Barcenilla, Jr.-led Heroes.

Later, Salgados held his ground against Ukrainian-Spanish GM Viktor Moskalenko of San Juan to complete the stunning reversal.

Toledo, bannered by GM Xu Yi of China and IM Rico Mascarinas, matched Surigao’s two huge wins over Northern Division heavyweights.

The Atty, Jeah Gacang-owner Trojans pulled the rug from under Northern Division frontrunner Caloocan Load Manna Knights, 11.5-9.5, and Laguna Heroes, 12-9.

The smashing victories by both Surigao and Toledo overshadowed another dominant showing by defending champion Iloilo Kisela Knights and Davao Eagles, who swept their matches to keep their 1-2 positions.

Iloilo clobbered Mindoro Tamaraws, 16.5-4.5, and Cavite Spartans, 11.5-9.5, to remain as the only unbeaten team with 15 straight victories.

Davao humbled Olongapo Rainbow, 14-7, and Mindoro Tamaraws, 14.5-6.5, to keep second place with 12-3 win-loss record.

Surigao is tied with Negros Kingsmen for third at 11-4, followed by Toledo at 9-6.

Over at the Northern Divsion, Caloocan Load Manna Knights recovered from an upset loss to Toledo with a 15-6 triumph over Camarines-Iriga Oragons for a 13-2 slate.

Pasig Pirates swept Zambonga Trojans, 14-7, and Negros Kingsmen, 13-8, to stay within striking distance with a 12-3 record.

Cagayan Kings also made their move with a 20-1 demolition of Camarines-Iriga and 11.5-9.5 squeaker over Cagayan de Oro to move into a tie with San Juan Predators at 10-5.

Cavite Sprtans split their matches, beating Pagadian, 17-4 but losing to Iloilo, 9.5-11.5, for 9-6 mark.

Tied at sixth to seventh places are Isabela Knight Raiders and Laguna Heroes with 8-7 slates.

Isabela won over Palawan Queen’s Gambits, 15.5-5.5, and Cebu City Machers, 13.5-7.5.

The tournament, the country’s first and only professional chess league, is organized by the Professional Chess Association of the Philippines (PCAP), headed by Atty. Paul Elauria as president, Michael Angelo Chua as chairman and Ariel Potot as vice-chairman.

The tournament is sanctioned by the Games and Amusements Board (GAB), headed by Chairman Abraham “Baham” Mitra, and supported by the National Chess Federation of the Philippines (NCFP), led by Chairman Prospero “Butch” Pichay.

The matches of the Wesley So Cup can be viewed on the Facebook page of PCAP.

Standings after 15 rounds:

Caloocan 13-2; Pasig 12-3; San Juan 10-5, Cagayan 10-5; Cavite 9-6; Laguna 8-7
Isabela 8-7; Manila 7-8; Quezon City 5-10, Rizal 5-10; Mindoro 3-12; Olongapo 1-14.

Iloilo 15-0; Davao 12-3; Negros 11-4, Surigao 11-4; Toledo 9-6, Zamboanga 9-6; Camarines-Iriga 7-8; Tacloban 6-9; Cebu 5-10; Palawan 4-11; Cagayan de Oro 3-12; Pagadian 1-124.