Former champ sees more wins for ace wards
(The Philippine Star) - February 15, 2015 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Team ICTSI coach Bong Lopez expects to surpass the team’s 36-victory romp last year with his aces, led by reigning US Girls’ Junior champ Princess Superal and Faldo Series Asia titlist Pauline del Rosario, ready to conquer more challenges here and abroad.

“The team is doing great, in training, in building confidence and facing the challenges,” said Lopez, who has been at the helm of the ladies amateur golf the last six years, producing winners after winners and discovering and developing fresh talents.

In fact, Superal, who accounted for 12 of the team’s 36 wins last year, has posted her first victory in the young season – a runaway triumph in Spring Junior in California last month. The nine-player ICTSI-The Country Club squad, which includes Yuka Saso, Sam Martirez, Sofia Chabon, Mikaela Fortuna, Abby Arevalo, Sam Green and Bernice Ilas-Olivarez, is currently vying in various tournaments abroad.

“2014 was a superb year for my team, and the entire country. This is a good sign as this means we are in the right direction in golf development,” said Lopez, a multi-titled amateur who won the national championship in 1992. He also bagged the national boys crown in 1978, the Asian Junior title in 1982, the national junior plum in 1983 and was spearhead of the Phl gold medal team in the 1983 Putra Cup and 1991 SEA Games.

But his feats last year stood out in his checkered coaching career, earning him a citation as Coach of the Year for golf from the Philippine Sportswriters Association, which will hold its annual Awards Night presented by Milo and San Miguel Corp. tomorrow at 1Esplanade in Pasay City.

Aside from guiding Superal to the US girls’ feat where the latter became the first homegrown Filipino winner in US Golf Association play, del Rosario and Saso to nine and seven wins, respectively, Lopez also steered Team Phl to the first Santi Cup crown of the Putra Cup, finally beating perennial rival Thailand.

The 48-year-old teaching pro, as certified by Jack Nicklaus in 1997 and the USGTF in 2006, is also the swing guru of Jennifer Rosales, a two-time LPGA champion, and three-time Asian Tour winner Angelo Que.

ABBY AREVALO ANGELO QUE ASIAN JUNIOR ASIAN TOUR AWARDS NIGHT BONG LOPEZ COACH OF THE YEAR COUNTRY CLUB LOPEZ PUTRA CUP
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