December 10, 2018, Brgy. Sabang, Cabugao, Ilocos Sur— The swell had dropped a notch and long, clean lines wrapped around Sabang Beach for the Men’s and Women’s Longboard Open Finals. Suspense rose when Baler local Mark Aguila, last year’s Grand Champion for Men’s Longboard, didn’t advance to the Semifinals hence leaving the door wide open for a new champion to step in.
The Women’s Finals showed reigning champion, Daisy Valdez of La Union, defending her title against Siargao’s rising stars, Aping Agudo, Ikit Agudo, and Maricel Parajes. In the last 8 minutes of the Finals heat, Maricel snapped her leash and the audience held their breaths as her longboard smashed onto the rocks. Help from the Siargao camp was quick and even Daisy checked on Maricel before they both paddled back to the lineup to finish their heat.
The La Union boys battled against each other to reach the Men’s Longboard Finals and it was down to Jay-r Esquivel, Roger Casugay, Marven Abat, and Crisanto “King-King” Villanueva. The suspense peaked as Roger had overtaken Jay-r for the top spot and time was winding down faster than Jay-r could catch a decent set wave to raise his score. Then at the 2-minute mark, a non-priority interference was called on Roger when he inadvertently dropped in on Marven Abat. The judges slashed his second-best wave score in half and at the sound of the buzzer, Jay-r seized the #1 spot once and for all.
Results for the 2018 Ilocos SurF National Surfing Championships:
Men’s Shortboard Open
Champion: John Mark Tokong (Siargao)
2nd Place: Piso Alcala (Siargao)
Equal 3rd: Jay-r Esquivel (La Union) and Edwardo Alciso (Siargao)
Equal 5th: Neil Sanchez (Baler), Jefferson Del Torre (Baler/La Union), Marven Abat (La Union), and Mark Escoltura (Siargao)
Women’s Shortboard Open
Champion: Nilbie Blancada (Siargao)
2nd Place: Ana Mae Alipayo (Siargao)
Equal 3rd: Daisy Valdez (La Union) and Pinky Alipayo (Siargao)
Equal 5th: Jolina Longos (Siargao), Justin Escoltura (Siargao), and Angel’Lea Aguilar (Pangasinan)
Champion: Gabriel Lerog (Siargao)
2nd Place: Jomarie Ebueza (La Union)
Equal 3rd: Perry Ventura (La Union) and Rj Chico Lopez (La Union)
Equal 5th: John Joey Agasa (Zambales), Benjomar Canon (Siargao), Noah Arkfield (Siargao), John Carlos Noguerra (Siargao)
Men’s Longboard Open
Champion: Jay-r Esquivel (La Union)
2nd Place: Roger Casugay (La Union)
Equal 3rd: Marven Abat (La Union) and Crisanto Villanueva (La Union)
Equal 5th: Rico Dumaguin (La Union), Jomarie Ebueza (La Union), Jefferson Dela Torre (Baler/La Union), and Jhenard Fernandez (La Union)
Women’s Longboard Open
Champion: Daisy Valdez (La Union)
2nd Place: Jessah Agudo (Siargao)
Equal 3rd: Jevy Mae Agudo (Siargao) and Maricel Parajes (Siargao)
Equal 5th: Rhea Ventura (La Union), Ashlee Lopez (La Union), Angel’Lea Aguilar (Pangasinan), and Winnie Fuller (La Union)
The Ilocos SurF National Surfing Championships is the last stop of the 2018 Philippine Surfing Championship Tour. After tallying all the points from the Siargao, Lanuza, and Cabugao legs of the tour, this year’s Grand Champions are John Mark Tokong for Men’s Shortboard, Nilbie Blancada for Women’s Shortboard, Gabriel Lerog for Juniors Shortboard, Jay-r Esquivel for Men’s Longboard, and Daisy Valdez for Women’s Longboard.
The PSCT Grand Champions have the highest chances of representing the Philippines in the upcoming SEA Games as well as the 2020 Olympics where surfing will be celebrated as a medal sport for the first time.
That’s it for this year’s tour! See you all next year.
About the Ilocos SurF National Surfing Championships
The Ilocos SurF National Surfing Championships is the third and final stop of this year’s tour. This is made possible through the support of Ilocos Sur District 1 representative, Congressman Ronald Singson, who is also a businessman, a concert producer, and more recently, an avid surfer as well.
The Ilocos SurF National Surfing Championships is supported by the following sponsors and media partners: The Municipality of Cabugao, Gwapitos, Fat Lips Surfshop, Kudo Surf, Sky Jet Air (Official Airline Partner), ANC-X, My Life On Board, ABS CBN Sports + Action, FluidSurf, Marajaw Surf Company, INQPop, People’s Television Network, Inquirer.net, Be Siargao, Blunt Magazine, Phenom Fitness, and CNN Philippines.
The Philippine Surfing Championship Tour (PSCT) is the premier professional surfing competition where top surfers from all over the Philippines compete in multiple locations around the country, vying for a spot in the national surfing team.
Already on its second year, the PSCT celebrates the Filipino surfers, passionate fans, and dedicated partners that together grow the Philippine surfing community to what it is today and what it’s envisioned to be.
PSCT exists to set the stage and act as a platform for professional surfing in the Philippines, promoting Filipino surfers as world-class athletes, and uniting the surfing community and fans by sharing the story, drama, and adventure of Philippine surfing one tour at a time.