BACOLOD -- Canlubang is off to another great start, firing 137 points in the opening round of the 63rd Philippine Airlines (PAL) Interclub Men’s play Wednesday for a three-point lead over newest rival The Country Club at the par-70 Negros Occidental Golf and Country Club here.

Albin Engino carded 37 points, or one-under-69 in stroke play, to spearhead the opening-day charge of the Sugar Barons, who are seeking a fifth straight crown and 17th overall.

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Mhark Fernando also came up big with 36, while Paul Echavez and Jobim Carlos added 32 each. Abe Rosal did not count with his 29.

The Country Club started its bid to dethrone Canlubang with 134 points on the solid play of JR Tanpinco, Peter Villaber and Rufino Bayron. Tanpinco scored 35 while Villaber and Bayron made 34 each. Alexes Nallos counted with his round of 31 points.

The 30-year-old Engino fired five birdies for the round to offset his four bogeys. Elgino, who started the day at the back nine, birdied the last hole to highlight his scintillating performance that gave Canlubang another sizzling start in the annual tournament.

The Davao City Golf Club scored 92 points to occupy third place in the standings of the Friendship division after the first round.

Fil-Am Hawaii paced the field after scoring 103 points in a blistering start while Bay Area is right behind with its 97.

The Davao team leaned on Larry Pasquil’s 27, Kristoffer Quemada and Bert Pogoy’s 25 each, and Art Lazo’s 20 to stay 11 points behind Fil-Am Hawaii and five down on Bay Area. Boy Braganza did not count after scoring 18.

Davao, though, is just two points ahead of Bacolod, which scored 90.

Just last week, the Apo Golf and Country Club from Davao City created some ripples in the City of Smiles after winning the Sportswriters class of the Senior’s event.

Apo won pulling away as it scored 133 points on the final day for a 500-point aggregate, or 32 up on second placer Fil-Am Hawaii which carded 468.

The event is presented by platinum sponsors Airbus, Boeing, 105.1 Crossover and Radio Mindanao Network. Major sponsors are Action Asia, GE Aviation, MTV Philippines, People Asia and Royal Caribbean.

The corporate backers are Business Mirror, Philippine Graphic, www.philstar.com, Sabre Airline Solutions/Sabre Travel Network and Resort World Manila. Century Park Hotel, DWWW 774 AM, Panay News, Master Card and Thales Aerospace are minor patrons.