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Bulldogs Near UAAP Men's Badminton Crown

By Dugout Philippines

National University dominated La Salle, 3-0, to move to within a win of clinching the UAAP Men's Badminton Championship at the Rizal Memorial Badminton Courts.

Joper Escueta beat Kenneth Monterubio, 21-16, 21-12, in the first singles, while Ariel Magnaye trounced Gerald Sibayan, 21-12, 21-16, in the other singles match.

Escueta and Magnaye teamed up to complete the series win by defeating Sibayan and Carlos Cayanan in the lone doubles match, 21-14, 21-14.

Escueta said after the game that the long rest benefited them a lot. "We were very focused and well-rested because of our one-week break," he said.

The Bulldogs will try to complete a perfect season on Game 2 initially scheduled on Sunday at 9:00 AM.

In the women's semifinals, Ateneo beat FEU, 3-1, to set up a date with UP in the finals.

Patricia Malibiran opened the series with a win against Dei Duquilla, 21-12, 14-21, 21-9, in the first singles, while Bianca Carlos reigned over Thea Pomar, 21-9, 21-15, in the other singles match.

Pomar bounced back as she teamed up with Hannah Tudtud to beat Jana De Vera and Dia Magno, 21-23, 21-19, 21-17, in the first doubles match to keep FEU in the tie.

Malibiran and Carlos, however, sealed the series win by outlasting Duquilla and Maridel Rivera, 21-19, 21-18, in the other doubles match.

The Lady Eagles will try to defend their title against the overachieving Lady Maroons, who hold a thrice-to-beat advantage, in the women's finals at 1:00 PM also on Sunday.
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