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Photograph by Joey Sanchez Mendoza for the Daily Tribune @tribunephl_joey De La Salle Santiago Zobel’s 1-2 punch, Tristan Padilla and Rafael Leonio, got the big trophy to show for their feats.

In a stunning upset, but one that will only enrich country’s talent base, Manolo Fortich National High School captured the Junior Golf Foundation of the Philippines Interschool National Finals last weekend at the Caliraya Springs Golf and Country Club.

The Bukidnon school stood its ground against Manila-based rivals in ruling the Senior High School division through the efforts of the likes of Xhylas Luzon and Simon Wahing.

That spoke volume about the JGFP’s grassroots programs which for the first time reached Mindanao region.

“We are happy with the fine performances of our players from Mindanao,” JGFP president Oliver Gan said.

“It gives us satisfaction that the program we started last year is bearing fruits. We will continue to support our junior players from Visayas and Mindanao in the hope of producing world champions.”

Still, De La Salle Santiago Zobel refused to be pushed to the sideline as it topped the Junior High School division. They piled up 709 points and bested Ateneo de Manila University (702) and Xavier School (787) which rounded up the top three.

Levonne Talion of Letran Calamba copped the JHS Girls individual with Precious Zaragosa of Learning Links Academy, Nicole Gan of Immaculate Conception Academy finishing second and third, respectively.

Tristan Padilla of Zobel won the Boys’ individual, while teammate Rafael Leonio and Ateneo’s Rajah Crisostomo took second and third places.

Zobel wound up runner-up in the SHS division with Beacon Academy joining them in the podium.

Zach Castro of Zobel emerged victorious in the SHS Boys individual, while John Bernis of National University Laguna and Santino Pineda of Beacon Academy placed second and third.

Kiara Montebon of Abbas Orchard clinched the Girls’ WAGR (World Amateur Golf Ranking) division aside from taking the Girls’ top place in the SHS individual.

Also making it to the WAGR top five are Talion, Zaragoza, Gan and Isabella Tabanas of Xavier High School.

Castro rules the WAGR Boys with Pineda, Bernis, Padilla and Leonio in the top five of the same order.

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