The Philippines lacrosse team is looking to prepare for the 2023 World Lacrosse Men's Championship as they will play in San Diego this summer. 11 of the 23 players on the team looks to build off its 2018 Men's Championship performance in Israel, where they finished 10th out of 46 teams in its debut.
The team finished in the top four spots to qualify for a spot in the championship when they played in South Korea. According to World Lacrosse Sport, “We’re not a big program, so we kind of know who we have and what their skillsets are, on and off the field,” said Ron Garcia, president of the Philippines Lacrosse Association.
“No one believed that we were going to be competitive, let alone finish 10th in the world, leading up to that championship,” said 2018 team captain Justin Rodis, who will once again represent the Philippines in 2023. “It was just an unbelievable ride.” To get ready, they look to put a camp together and scrimmages before the tournament. As for now, the team looks to solidify their relationship as a unit.
Players on the team coming from the United States, Canada, and Australia all come together and prepare for the challenge. San Diego will be an opportunity for the team to gain more of a following and bring buzz to the men's national team. This isn't the Philippines' only team however, they will also have a men’s open team, a women’s open team and a youth team to participate in the World Lacrosse Festival that coincides with the championship.
“Our mission as an organization is to grow the game back home in the Philippines,” Rodis said. “But it takes a village, and these are part of the grassroots steps that we take. We want to engage with the Filipino community around the country because ultimately if we don’t get support in the U.S., it becomes more difficult to generate awareness and equipment donations back home.” - World Lacrosse Sport
The tournament against Israel begins on June 23 and the league wants to continue and bring lacrosse to the Philippines and inspire a generation to take on a new sport.
To help support the team, check out what expenses are listed on their fundraiser page.
Cover Photo Credit: World Lacrosse Sport
Carmelo Anthony visited the Smart Araneta Coliseum officially as the ambassador for the FIBA World Cup. The world championship is in August and he joined Spain's Pau Gasol and Argentina's Luis Scola in promoting the event which will be held in Philippines, Japan, and Indonesia.
According to Inquirier.net, Anthony shares, “It’s a full circle. I’ve been a part of FIBA basketball since the early 2000s and to come back full circle now and be the ambassador for the World Cup. This is definitely an honor, it’s a blessing. It’s been a long time coming. But for me is just about being able to build nations together.”
He also shares how now he's glad to be sharing the game of basketball globally. “I’m glad we’re not competing no more. We’re actually on the same side. We’re on the same team now. We are representing the global game of basketball. So I don’t have to worry about going up against Pau and then thinking about him and the gold medal game... I don’t have to think about that now we can come together we could band together like brothers and really grow this game of basketball the way that it needs to be.” While on his trip to Manila, he caught the Gilas-Lebanon game at Philippine Arena to present the Naismith trophy.
Cover Photo Credit: Carmelo Anthony Instagram
The NBA just dropped brand new city edition jerseys for all teams and the Golden State Warriors had theirs designed by Fil-Am graffiti artist, Allison Human. The Oakland native was honored to be asked to design this year's women's suffrage-themed edition. Excited is an understatement for the artist as she checks this off as one of the coolest things she's ever done. "This is arguably the biggest thing I've ever done," Hueman says. "I have butterflies every time I think about it."
The result is among the most radical jerseys in NBA history, centered around a photorealistic yellow-gold rose -- one of the symbols of the women's suffrage movement -- that stretches from just under the center logo to the bottom edge of the jersey. ESPN also reported that the team in "conjunction with the jersey launch, the Warriors and the sponsor, Rakuten are donating $25,000 to the Women's Sports Foundation."
According to her socials, each aspect of the jersey represents both the city and women empowerment:
Cover Photo Credit: Allison Human Instagram
With the start of the NBA season upon us, it also means new game day commercials. For the 76th season of the league, the NBA came up with a commercial featuring the greats in the leagues with a creative monologue. However, Google took a hands-on approach and came up with the greatest pick-up game of all time featuring Fil-Am and Houston Rockets guard, Jalen Green along with Jayson Tatum, Candace Parker, Joel Embiid, and more.
Players of the game can't resist a good pick-up on a street court. Jalen and Jayson call out some friends to join that turns into a viral event. The neighborhood pick-up game brings together spectators like Simu Liu, Richard Jefferson, and more to catch the event of the season. Catch it all below!
Cover Photo Credit: Jalen Green Instagram
To counter the loss against Lebanon earlier this week, Gilas Pilipinas took it as motivation to turn their game around against Saudi Arabia. In a 84-46 win at the Mall of Asia Arena, the victory gives way to a 3-3 record in the FIBA World Cup Asian qualifiers. The Philippines recovered from a slow start that saw them score a paltry 11 points in the first quarter, and came away with an 84-46 demolition of the visiting Saudi Arabians. Jordan Clarkson was sensational in his home debut, with 23 points, six assists, and five rebounds.
The team morale increased with this win and players are confident that they are building "something special" within the team. "I think we did a good job. The emphasis that we put on ourselves from the last game, I think we accomplished that," Clarkson said after the game. "We came out here and we executed and everybody played well, everybody played hard, and you know, gave their best effort."
To get out of their slow start at the beginning, Gilas came to play in the third quarter out-scoring the opponent in a 24-8 run. The 20,000 people crowd supported the team and cheered them on during their high-energy dunks and layups. Gilas hopes to keep the momentum going and building on the pieces to continue to the FIBA Asian World Cup.
Cover Photo Credit: Gilas Pilipinas Instagram
NBA player and Utah Jazz guard, Jordan Clarkson arrived in Manila just in time for Gilas Pilipinas' first practice. The national team is gearing up to to face Lebanon and Saudi Arabia in the fourth window of the FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers. He made the long flight overseas and we get to tag along the journey in his latest vlog, titled "Manila Man."
Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) executive director Sonny Barrios shared how much pride Clarkson has to be playing for Pilipinas and embraces the interactions around him. The executive director acknowledged Clarkson's high basketball IQ and his quick turn around on learning the team's plays.
Meshing and blending with the team hasn't been a problem for Clarkson as he's made the effort of interacting with his teammates like Kai Sotto and Kiefer Ravena, but especially the fans. To help create a camaraderie, the basketball star participates on sidelines conversations and fun half-court shooting contest post-practice. Barrios continues,“Aside from the high energy that I notice that is prevailing in the whole team, as far as Jordan is concerned, he is very comfortable during side interactions with the people around him.”
The former Sixth Man of the Year will take on Lebanon on the road on August 25th and then host Saudi Arabia at the Mall of Asia Arena on August 25th.
Cover Photo Credit: Jordan Clarkson Instagram
Formula racing is almost half way through its 2022 season and the driver standings are getting interesting. F3 Filipino driver, Bianca Bustamante is in Hungary with the W series, which pioneers women's racing, for this weekend's Hungarian Grand Prix. This was her first back-to-back race weekend before the summer break. Representing the W series, not only did Bianca get to race but also have a Formula 1 experience where she met drivers like Lewis Hamilton.
However, the weekend didn't go as planned under wet conditions as Bianca finished with a DNF. She made huge improvements from the qualifying round into race day, but the wet roads were unforgiving. Bianca shared that she caught water on the drying track and lost the rear of her car causing her to retire early in this GP.
Bianca keeps her head help high going into this 2-month break until the next race in Singapore. The street circuit is one of the most exciting courses with the coolest views, but she'll have to get ready for the heat and humidity that increases while in the cock pit. It looks like Bianca will be working with her team from now until October to raise sponsor funding for four days of track testing. We're excited for Bianca's next race and second half of the season to start!
Cover Photo Credit: Bianca Bustamante Instagram
Huge congratulations are in order for the Philippine National Women's Football team for winning the AFF Women's Championship title. The ladies beat out the regional powerhouse team of Thailand in the final with a score of 3-0. Philippines' defense helped with locking the opponents to a nil score in the premier football competition.
The national champs clinched the win in front of an enthusiastic home crowd at Rizal Memorial Stadium. The battle for the regional title was a long time coming for the home team as previously they were eliminated by Thailand in the semifinals of the 31st Southeast Asian Games. Scorers of the game included Centerback Jessika Cowart, Katrina Guillou, and striker Sarina Bolden
They are now even a step closer to the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.
Cover Photo Credit: @pilipinaswnt
The 2022 AFF Women's Championship took place at Rizal Memorial Football Stadium which featured Philippines Women's National Football team versus Team Australia. The opposing team consisted of youthful players that matched the energy of Team Philippines. Scoring the only and winning goal of the match was Sarina Bolden who put the Philippines up a goal in the hour-mark on the lock.
The winning goal, a header from an assist by Eva Madarang just surpassed the hands of Aussie goal-keeper, Jada Mathyssen-Whyman. Coach Alen Stajcic called the win an "amazing result" and describing the performance from the players, "first class."
The last time the ladies played at Rizal Memorial Stadium was in 2019 against Myanmar, suffering a bronze medal loss in the Southeast Asian Games. This win marks redemption from that loss and shows the progress the team has made since then. With a close call towards the end of the match with Australia almost equalizing the match in the 70th minute, the Filipinas held on to their lead with their defense.
The win was witnessed by over 1,400 fans and all celebrated alongside the team. It's been the first time a crowd was invited back to the stadium since the team qualified for the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup and winning bronze in the 31st SEA Games.
Cover Photo Credit: Pilipinas WNFT Twitter
A reigning Olympic champion, Hidilyn Diaz defends her title in the women's 55kg diversion in this year's 31st Southeast Asian Games in Hanoi. The Games initially scheduled for 2021 in Hanoi was postponed to 2022 due to the pandemic. With this win, she helps narrow the gap for the Philippines against Singapore and Indonesia for the third spot.
It's been 10 months since Hidilyn last stepped out for an international competition and only a few months after she battled with COVID-19 earlier this year. According to her coach, they tried a new training regiment and adopted sports science to help with her nutrition. The hard work paid off again as she won gold again Thai Sanikun Tanasan, keeping the gold streak alive and gets her one step closer to the 2024 Paris Summer Olympics.
Cover Photo Credit: Hidilyn Diaz Instagram
With the NBA playoffs set in high gear, the Draft is right around the corner. Three Filipino athletes have declared for the NBA draft and taking their shot to enter the League. The three hopefuls are Las Piñas native and Australia's National Basketball League athlete, Kai Sotto, Kentucky Jayhawks point guard Remy Martin, and Rutgers Scarlet Knights forward Ron Harper Jr.
The 2022 NBA Draft is underway with a total of 283 players who are early entry candidates-- 247 from colleges and 36 international players who are looking to take the next step in their careers. Although this is the information on early entry candidates, expect to see more news coming soon like the three Filipino athletes declaring for draft night. The event is set to for June 23rd at Barclays Center in New York. Lets take a look at the profiles of the three Filipino hopefuls.
The 19 year old, seven-foot-two center born in the Philippines currently plays for the Australian NBL with the Adelaide 36ers. Before playing in Australia, he was part of the Ateneo Blue Eaglets of the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) then moving to The Skill Factory (TSF) in Atlanta, Georgia. Also, Sotto was considered a four-star recruit among many NCAA Division I programs in the U.S. In 2020, he joined the NBA G League Ignite and opted out of collegiate eligibility. Due to commitments with playing for the Philippine National Team and the situation regarding the pandemic, Sotto was unable to return to the G-League and couldn't declare for the Draft until this year.
A current NCAA champion, the Kansas Jayhawks point guard had a solid super-senior year going all the way in the March tournament. The California native is a three-time All-Pac-12 selection, making him the second player in Arizona State Univeristy history to be named all-league three times. The ASU transfer is going all in with the 2022 Draft as he withdrew during the 2020 and 2021 seasons to continue his collegiate career. In 2022, Martin averaged 8.6 points, 3 rebounds, and 2.5 assists.
Ron Harper Jr.
The six-foot-six Junior from New Jersey decided to forgo his senior year of collegiate eligibility with the Rutgers Scarlet Knights. Although the Knights had a short end to the tournament, Harper Jr. made an impact on the court. Throughout his collegiate career, he went from a two-star prospect to an All-American. The shooting guard / small forward had an impressive last season with an average of 15.8 points, 5.9 rebounds, and 1.9 assists for the season. The son of previous Los Angeles Lakers player, Ron Harper Sr. is said to be projected as a second-round selection.
Huge congratulations to 19 year-old Fil-Canadian tennis player, Leylah Fernandez on her Monterrey Open win. The defending champ of the Abierto GNP Seguros title saved 5 championship points by defeating Columbia's Camila Osorio 6-7 (5), 6-4, 7-6 (3). The 3-set match between both singles players took 2 hours and 52 minutes. Leylah needed all the energy she could get and the crowd was definitely into the match.
Although this is the first time Leylah and Camila faced off professionally, they've matched up frequently during juniors including 3 times in junior Grand Slam events. With this win, Leylah is ranked No. 21 in the world and now 2-2 in tour-level events. This marks her second WTA title which was a hard fought battle.
Cover Photo Credit: Leylah Fernandez Twitter