FORMER University of San Jose Recoletos (USJ-R) standout Loujei Tipgos grabbed the King of the Beach title in the second leg of the Cebu City Sports Commission Beach Volleyball tournament at the Fort Sand Court in the Plaza Independencia playgrounds.
Tipgos scored 63 points and was followed by Jade Becaldo (50 points), Niño Gairanod (49) and Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) beach volleyball consultant Eric LeCain (46).
Tipgos, 26, the coach the Cebu International School (CIS) indoor volleyball team, is aiming to be part of the Cebu City beach volleyball team that will represent the country in the Olympic qualifiers and the Asian Games this September.
“This is one of my goals, that I will be able to compete in the international level and be able to play against seeded foreign players. That will be an opportunity to gauge if I am ready to compete internationally,” said Tipgos.
Tipgos wants to play in the Olympic qualifiers in August in Hong Kong along with Becaldo.
Aside from that, Tipgos, who helped USJ-R win the National Nestea Beach Volleyball title along with Ariel Carumba in college, also wants to promote the sport.
“One of my reasons is to prove to everyone that beach volleyball here in Cebu is still growing. Before, magduwa rag beach volleyball every summer lang. Now we have the court, a trainer, and the support from the CCSC headed by chairman Edward Hayco,” said Tipgos.
Tipgos added that there is a big difference between the players now and before.
“Karon mao niduwa ko to help the sport. To inspire tong mga sumusunod nga manuwaay ug beach volleyball. “
He also said that the King of the Beach format is a good opportunity for the newbies to be able to play with and against seasoned players.
LeCain, who quit playing beach volleyball to focus on being a coach, played during the second leg as part of his 50th birthday celebration.
“It was a very hot day. We took a look break in the middle of the tournament. This also proves that the sport is really for everyone, it doesn’t matter how old or young you are. I know people who play in their 60’s,” said LeCain.