Gomez won in the 33 moves after a brilliant sacrifice when he gave up a rook for a pawn to launch a king side attack and inevitable checkmate.
“The veterans delivered the important points to win the match.” said Philippine Executive Chess Association (PECA) president Dr. Alfredo “Fred” Paez, one of the four co-team owners of the Laguna Heroes that include Benjamin Dy, Jonathan Mamaril and David Nithyananthan.
“The Laguna Heroes defeated the powerhouse Negros Kingsmen in one of the most thrilling matches in the All Filipino Conference Professional Chess Association of the Philippines (PCAP) tournament,” said Paez, who is also Assistant Executive Director for Southern Luzon of the National Chess Federation of the Philippines.
“It took Grandmaster John Paul Gomez and the Laguna-based squad a huge collective effort to outlast one of the best teams in the Southern Division and register a score of 12.5-8.5,” said Dy.
Arizona, US-based and two-time Asian Junior Champion Grandmaster Rogelio “Banjo” Barcenilla Jr., played black and also scored a win. He defeated Fide Master Nelson “Elo” Mariano III on board one. Fide Master Austin Jacob Literatus trounced Atty. Jason Maxino Bandal on board two while Kimuel Aaron Lorenzo halved the point with Adrian Dela Cruz on board seven to tie the rapid section, 7-7, which sealed the victory.
Arena Grandmaster Rowelyn Joy “Kajoy” Acedo, National Master Rosendo Bandal Jr. and National Master Rolzon Roullo carried the fight for the Negros Kingsmen by beating Woman National Master Jean Karen Enriquez, Fide Master Jose Efren Bagamasbad and Vince Angelo Medina on board three, four and six, respectively.
Earlier, the Laguna Heroes prevailed in the blitz portion, 5.5-1.5, against the Negros Kingsmen.
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