BACOLOD CITY – Eddie Bagtas and Rafael Garcia carried the fight as defending champion Luisita seized the lead halfway through the 32nd Philippine Airlines Senior Interclub golf team championships on Friday.
Bagtas mixed three birdies with three bogeys and a double bogey to finish with 52 points as Luisita took a two-point lead over first-round leader Canlubang at the windswept Binitin course.
Garcia made 50 and Luis Laureta added 47 as Luisita totalled 149 for a two-day total of 295.
Canlubang, which opened with 150 points at Marapara, managed only 143 with none of the four players fielded by non-playing captain Tony Olives hitting the 50-point plateau.
Dave Hernandez was Canlubang’s top scorer with 49 with Abe Avena and Rolly Viray contributing 48 and 46, respectively.
“We were fortunate to come out on top. The wind was blowing strong all day. The last two rounds would definitely be a grind,” said Luisita skipper Jeric Hechanova.
The third round will again be played at Binitin before Luisita, Canlubang and Del Monte return to Marapara for the final round.
“It will boil down to the last four holes at Marapara wherein the contest shifts to matchplay,” Hechanova predicted.
The Founders division is also bound to go down to the wire.
Cebu Country Club amassed 132 points at Marapara to take a five-point lead over Alabang Golf which returned with 129.
Defending champion Orchard was 10 points behind CCC after amassing 126. In fourth spot was Manila Golf at 261.
In the Aviator bracket, Villamor built a 21-point lead over Alta Vista after scoring 124 points at Binitin for 249 overall.
Alta Vista had 120 for 228 with Socal Redhawk taking third spot with 214 after a 114.
Veterans Golf Club retained the lead in the Sportswriters division after collecting 119 points at Binitin course for a two-round total of 230.
Two points adrift was Rancho Palos Verdes which tallied 120 points. Running third was Taotaomona Guam with 218 points.
In the Friendship class, South Bay of Los Angeles seized the lead with 228 after posting 117 at the Marapara course.
Club 1872 of LA took second with 217 with Fil-Oz Sydney in third place with 215.
The Interclub’s Platinum sponsors this year are Primax Broadcasting, RMN and Fox, while major sponsors are BusinessWorld Publishing, Rolls Royce, TV5, Philippine Standard.
Other sponsors include Boeing, Under Armour, Eton Properties and Asia Brewery.