PAUL Minoza and Francis Morilla surged ahead of the field despite a bogey-bogey finish at the front, scoring for a one-over 73 and grabbing a one-stroke lead over the Ramil Bisera-Micah Shin tandem in the second round of the P1 million Davao National Pro-Am on Wednesday.
Minoza and Morilla held their ground in the alternate-shot format event, making the turn at 36 and going one-under with two holes to play at the front. The duo fumbled on the slow greens of the Apo layout and closed out with back-to-back bogeys to settle for that 73.
But that proved enough to lift them from joint second to the top of the heap at 145 as overnight leaders Ferdie Aunzo and Monchit Mackay, after a decent 37 at the front, shot themselves in the foot with a closing 40 and wound up with a 77.
They tumbled to third at 147, enabling the Bisera-Shin pair to move to solo second at 146 after a gutsy 72, the best score in a challenging day at the tight par-72 course.
But while Paul Minoza zeroed in on a rare crown, his more illustrious brother Frankie Minoza and partner Ting Castillo missed the cut by one as they wound up with a 159 after an 83.
Jun Bernis and partner Paul Garcia rallied with four birdies in the last six holes at the back and saved a two-over 74 as they bounced back into contention for the P172,000 top prize with a 148, just three shots off the lead heading to the last 18 holes.
Edgar Ababa, the pro winner in the inaugural staging of the event in 2010, also made a 74 in partnership with Oscarlito Ababa to lead a five-team logjam in fifth place at 150. Others at six-over par were Eddie Salvador-Mike Enriquez (74), Mhark Fernando-Ais Fernando (74), Boboy Jaraula-Reymond Jaraula (77) and Christopher delos Santos-Kim Tae Woo (77).
The Jhonnel Ababa-Benjie Leparto and Albin Engino-Edsel Tan pairs both made 79s for a 151 as they shared 10th place.
Tony Lascuna, the leading pro on the local circuit, and regular partner Den-Den De Castrol teamed up for a 75 as they jumped from joint 38th to a share of 12th with six other teams, including Elmer Salvador and teammate Ryan Gotan, who hardly recovered from an opening 77 with a 76.
Others at 153 were Ranel Glimada-Anthony Saban (74), Fernando Lumawag-Julius Susarno (76), Ruel Pabon-Meangguen Kang (76). Johvan Abano-Noel Langgamin (78) and Miguel Ochoa-John Kier Abdon, who blew a solid start of 73 with an 80.
Forty teams made it to the final round cut at 158 with Gerard Cantada and EJ Marcelo pooling a 155 after a 76 and the pairs of Jessie Balasabas-Jeffrey Ramirez (80), Elmer Saban-Bobby Inigo (75) and Anthony Fernando-Marco Mendoza (80) barely making it at 14-over.