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LIPA City, Batangas – Orlan Sumcad shouldered himself past Jay Bayron and Marvin Dumandan with a blistering charge at Mt. Lobo and shot a six-under 66 to grab a two-stroke lead over the erstwhile joint leaders midway through the P2 million ICTSI Classic here yesterday.
Sumcad used his power off the tee and superb iron play to set up birdie chances but surprisingly made the long ones and flubbed a couple from shorter range on a surface that has started to firm up after days of rain.
Still, his 31-35 card proved enough for the long-hitting Bacolod shotmaker to wrest control at eight-under 136, counting his opening 70, putting him 36 holes away from finally nailing the elusive win on the country’s premier tour sponsored by ICTSI.
“My ball-striking and iron play clicked, made some long putts but missed the shorter ones,” said Sumcad, who has turned in seven top 10 finishes in the circuit organized by Pilipinas Golf Tournaments, Inc., including a joint runner-up with Zanieboy Gialon in the ICTSI Forest Hills Championship last June.
He tries to stay on top and in the hunt for the top P360,000 purse as he slugs it out with Bayron and Dumandan in the featured threesome today after the Davaoeño shotmakers carded similar 71s and remained tied for the second straight day at 138.
Mars Pucay, tied with Sumcad at fourth at the start of the round, made one brief charge at Mt. Malipunyo with a 33, added another birdie on No. 1 but bogeyed two of the last seven holes and settled for another 70 for solo fourth at 140, four shots off the pace.
Clyde Mondilla, who also opened with an eagle-spiked 70, fumbled early with a double-bogey and bogey from No. 5 but fought back with three straight birdies and gunned down another on No. 14 to save a 71 and tied obscure Erwin Arcillas, who fired a 69, at fifth at 141.