The Wowowee team dominated the volleyball and basketball competitions to emerge as champions in yesterday's sports festival-fundraising event held at the Araneta Coliseum in Cubao, Quezon City.
The event was organized by the ABS-CBN noontime variety show to allow the public to see their favorite stars dribble their skills on the hardcourt, mixed with fun and entertainment. But more importantly, the occasion was staged by Wowowee host Willie Revillame and his team to raise substantial amount to be donated to charity institutions, namely, the Bantay Bata and Bayanijuan.
Willie proudly announced during the basketball half-time intermission that the event was able to collect P763, 490 from the total gate attendance, which reportedly drew an audience of 13,018.
The weekend event served as the culmination of the Wowowee-lympics, in which a separate non-fundraising sports competition event was staged a few weeks back.
In a previous speech, the TV show host revealed that the tournament was initially conceptualized as a simple activity meant for the show's staff and hosts. The idea, however, became bigger after Willie decided to invite other celebrities as well to participate in the endeavor.
Willie reportedly shelled out P1.5 million to be given to the winning teams plus a package trip to Hong Kong.
FUN FIGHT TO THE FINISH. Yesterday's event—being a charity undertaking unlike the initial Wowowee-lympics event—offered no special prizes to the celebrity players. This did nothing to lessen the competitive spirit of the participants who gamely showed up, according to Willie, for free.
The volleyball event featuring Star Magic against the Wowowee All Stars started as a see-saw affair with Star Magic bannered by a very perky Angelica Panganiban and Kim Chiu dictating the early goings of the first set.
Star Magic, unfortunately, could not hold on to its lead, allowing the Wowowee team to crawl back and seize momentum through a series of unanswered points. The first set ended close, with Wowowee finishing with 25 markers against Star Magic's 20.
The second set turned out to be a blowout for the Wowowee squad led by regulars RR Enriquez and Valerie Concepcion. Curiously, the Star Magic team completely cooled off allowing their opponent to break the game wide open. The Wowowee All Stars went all the way to a lopsided 25-12 victory.
In the basketball contest, Cesar Montano sank two crucial free throws with nine seconds remaining in the fourth quarter to give Wowowee the victory against the much younger Star Magic squad.
It was a tight contest right at the opening tip-off as both teams traded baskets and leads. Team captain Gerald Anderson teamed up with Ateneo Blue Eagles hot shooting guard Jai Reyes in the second half to spark a rally in favor of Star Magic.
The fast, young squad, however, could not find an answer to showstopper Jhong Hilario, who along with Gab Valenciano and hunky center John Hall, kept the scrappy Wowowee All Stars in the ballgame. Costly errors and missed shots coupled with good defense on the part of the Wowowee five in the final minutes of regulation ultimately sealed Star Magic's loss. The Wowowee All Stars won by a point, 89 against Star Magic's 88.
Other than the celebrity participants, PEP also spotted Senator Mar Roxas with broadcaster-fiancée Korina Sanchez, Bea Alonzo and Meryll Soriano, among the audience inside the Big Dome.