SPAS Five Nips St. Paul

MAASIN CITY - Overshadowed by General Santos City fighers, Mandaue City bets have somehow found their way past the dragnet and into the finals Friday of the PLDT-ABAP National Boxing Championship at the Maasin City gymnasium here.

Hipolito Banal Jr. outclassed Joash Jordan of General Santos City, 28-8, to advance to the finals of the junior light flyweight class, while Jeffrey Estelle defeated Aldrin Signar of Tayabas, 19-10, in the junior boys pinweight category.

The power-punching Banal answered the bell with a bang and kept up the pressure throughout to the thrill of the raucous crowd in the serene coastal city in Southern Leyte.

Also barging in the finals of the junior boys pinweight class was Mario Bautista of Himamaylan who defeated Jeronil Borres of Misamis Oriental.

Banal's performance complimented his rousing victory over hometown bet Jeffrey Orillo in the preliminaries where the referee stepped in to avert a mugging Tuesday.

He now faces another power-hitter, Patrick Dinolan of Davao del Norte, who clobbered Mario Jaga of Bago City in the other semifinal pairing, 8-4, with the gold medal and a possible slot in the national pool at stake.

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