Pascua leads march of favorites in National Age-Group

STA. ROSA CITY, LAGUNA – FIDE Master Haridas Pascua of Pangasinan won over Franz Robert Grafil of Valenzuela on Saturday to lead the march of seeded players after the second round of the 2012 National Age-Group Chess Championships, Luzon leg at the Market Place Complex here.

Tied with Pascua in the Boys Under-20 with 2.0 points were National Masters Alcon John Datu and Mari Joseph Turqueza of Quezon City and Jan Nigel Galan of Valenzuela City. Also in the running with 1.5 points were National Master Joey Albert Florendo of Zamboanga City and Nigel Valenzuela of Manila.

In the Boys Under-16, top seed Jerad Docena scored his second straight win to grab the solo lead. Close behind him with 1.5 points were Giovanni Mejia of Taguig, Jose Carlo Castro , Fomy Fagon and Paul Robert Evangelista of Quezon City, Charles Daniel Abuzo of Valenzuela City, Spencer de Guzman and Christian Nanola of San Pablo.

The other leaders in the boys division with perfect 2.0 points were: Under-14 – Romulo Curioso and Jasper Gerald Marce; Under-12 – Stephen Rome Pangilinan and Dennis Gutierrez III; Under-8 – Alekhine Nouri and Justine Mordida.

In the Girls Under-20, top seed Woman National Master Jan Jodilyn Fronda defeated Quina Louise Soler to share the lead with Enrica Villa, who shocked Akiko Charmaine Suede. Close behind them with 1.5 points were Woman FIDE Master Cherry Ann Mejia, Marie Antoinette San Diego, Gladys Hazelle Romero and Christine Joyce Laz.

The other leaders in the girls division after the second round were Under-16 – Jean Karen Enriquez; Under-12 – Bea Mendoza and Jesca Docena; Under-10 – Iris May dela Cruz and Regyne Palaming.

The tournament hosted by the city government of Sta. Rosa headed by Mayor Arlene B. Arcillas is divided into following categories: U-20 (boys and girls); U-16 (boys and girls); U-14 (boys and girls); U-12 (boys and girls); U-10 (boys and girls); and U-8 (boys and girls).

All category champions in the event will represent the country in the 2012 ASEAN+ Age-Group Chess Championships in Hue, Vietnam on June 10-20 while the top five players in each category will advance to the grand finals of the 2012 National Age-Group in Tanauan City, Batangas on April 23-30 together with the qualifiers from Visayas and Mindanao legs.

The grand final winners will represent the country in the 2012 Asian Youth Championships in Sri Lanka.

Meanwhile, the Luzon leg of the 2012 National Junior Championships will also be held at the same venue starting March 6 with the winners earning the right to represent the country in the World Junior Championships in Athens, Greece. Liberty Icao


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