JOBIM Carlos avoided a final round meltdown with timely conversions to capture the 2018 ICTSI Iloilo Golf Challenge at the Iloilo Golf and Country Club in Santa Barbara, Iloilo.
Carlos had a wide advantage heading into the final day but he suddenly lost his touch on the tricky surface midway through the last 18 holes to allow Guido Van der Valk and Tim Stewart to pull within one four flights ahead heading to the stretch on Saturday.
A runner-up in the ICTSI Negros Occidental Classic a week ago, Carlos got a lucky break when Van der Valk faded with back-to-back bogeys and Stewart flubbed a six-footer for par on the 17th and blew his bid for a playoff.
“It’s better to survive and win,” said Carlos, who captured his third victory in the last two-and-a-half months after also ruling the Philippine Golf Tour Asia Riviera leg and the PGT Mindanao swing.
“I played cautiously in the last six holes to avert going into playoff again,” said Carlos, referring to his loss to Negrense Juvic Pagunsan last week, a setback that only toughened up the young rising star.
Carlos also turned in a couple of runner-up finishes and two top six efforts with his latest victory, firming up his hold of the Order of Merit lead heading to the last two tournaments of the circuit.
Stewart wound up with a 68 and settled for second while American Lexus Keoninh rallied with a 67 and tied with Rene Menor and Van der Valk, who carded identical 69s, at 275.
Joenard Rates and Jhonnel Ababa flinched, with the former also fumbling with a 72 and the latter limping with a 73 to drop to joint sixth at 276 with Reymon Jaraula and Justin Quiban, who fought back with 66 and 68, respectively./PN