Ruselle Zapanta made it to the quarterfinals of the Men's Masters event in the 26th Asian Intercity Bowling Championships.
The No. 11-ranked Zapanta marched into the Round of 8 of the prestigious event after pulling off an upset over the sixth-seeded J.D. Castro of Tamuning, Guam, yesterday at the Premium Lanes Penang in Georgetown, Penang, Malaysia. Zapanta caught his higher seeded foe off guard in Game 1, winning by 12 pinfalls, 233-221. The Guam bet then foiled Zapanta's bid for a sweep with a 198-156 victory in Game 2, but the Saipan Bowling Association kegler still came out victorious after prevailing in the deciding Game 3, 226-194, for a 2-pinfall win, 615-613.
With the close victory, Zapanta was pitted against the No. 5-ranked Lee Tak Man of Macau in the quarterfinal game played on the same day and this time fatigue took its toll on the Saipan bet. Zapanta, who had been playing in the Malaysian tournament since Saturday, dropped both games, 181-201, 227-237, and settled for the No. 7 spot among 66 participants.
Despite losing in the quarterfinals, Zapanta's seventh place finish is the best that any Saipan bowler has achieved since joining the Intercity competition in 2003. Ruselle's brother, Raymond, also made it to the Top 16 of the Men's Masters event last year in Singapore, but lost in the first round.
Joining Ruselle in the Men's Masters was Simon Manacop, who was ranked No. 15 and fell to No. 2 finisher Jeremy Posadas of Paranaque Philippines. Manacop put up a good fight against his favored foe, taking Game 1, 259-256, before Posadas swept the last two games, 246-232, 216-212.
The Men's Masters was down to four players with the finals scheduled last night. Guam's Jay Leon Guerrero led the semis cast, which also includes his teammate, John John Ada, Lee, and Jurong's Paiman Dali.