Sudoku puzzlers stand out in 7th PSCC national finals

What started as a relaxed gathering of people with a shared interest turned into an adrenaline-filled competition of one hundred seventy six finalists showcasing their Sudoku skills in front of a crowd of supporters, shoppers and spectators during the 7th Philippine Sudoku Super Challenge (PSSC) held on Sunday, January 27, 2013 at the SM City North EDSA, The Annex, in Quezon City.

After the five rounds narrowing the field, top five puzzlers of the Sudoku Wizard category competed in the championship round, each solving the overlapped Sudoku in 30 minutes. As onlookers watched the 5 finalists made every number fall on the right grid of the puzzle, the crowd was surprised as two Sudoku wizards called the contest over when they finished almost the same time before the time ended.

Besting 106 puzzlers in the wizard category were Candice Renee Beatrice T. Solidarios of University of the Philippines Rural High School who won the champion trophy plus cash prize of Php50,000.00 and some gift items; Natalia Beatrice Q. Dy of St. John’s Institute, Bacolod City was proclaimed 1st runner-up, winning Php30,000.00 plus trophy and gift items; and Mikel Paul Tan Ayroso of Grace Christian College, 2nd runner-up, winning Php20,000.00 plus trophy and gift items. Making it on the 4th place was Romeo M. Esguerra of Colegio San Agustin-Biñan and Bryan Russel Esperanza of Saint Louis University-Laboratory High School. Indeed, it was a reversal of fate for both Solidarios and Dy who were last year’s 1st runner-up and champion respectively in the whiz kid category.

Using her speed and accuracy in almost all rounds, Kaye Janelle F. Yao of Grace Christian College, last year’s 2nd runner-up finally made it to the top of the 36 participants in the grandmaster category. She won Php60,000.00 plus trophy and several gift items. Alvin Ian Chan of Ateneo De Manila, 1st runner-up for two years in a row now went home with Php40,000.00 plus trophy and gift items. Ralph Joshua P. Sarrosa of the University of the Philippines-Visayas, finished as 2nd runner-up, taking Php20,000.00 plus trophy and gift items. Cheyenne Hsieh of De La Salle University-Manila and Ethan Riley C. Chan of Zamboanga Chong Hua High School ended as 3rd runner-up and 4th runner-up respectively.

As for the whiz kid category, Sanielle Meliz H. Ong of St. John’s Institute, Bacolod City swept the competition away by winning the championship round, winning Php20,000.00 plus trophy and gift items. Vicente Raphael C. Chan of Zamboanga Chong Hua High School bagged the 1st runner-up trophy with Php.10,000.00 and some gift items. Jan Vincent A. Simbol of BHC Educational Institution, Inc. made it as 2nd runner-up with Php5000.00 cash prize and gift items. Albriz Moore C. Bagsic of Lilyrose School and Crilex Comicho of Bonifacio Elementary School were the proud 3rd and 4th runners-up respectively.

The 7th PSSC had been made more special by the presence of the guest speaker, Mr. George Barcelon, president of Integrated Computer Systems, Inc. who not only inspired the winning spirits of Filipino Sudoku enthusiasts but also extended his generosity to the MTG Philippines.

The biggest contributing factors for the success of the 7th PSSC were these sponsors: SM Supermalls, Phoenix Publishing House, Inc., SHARP Calculators, Vital 1 Purified Mineral Water, Pilot Ballpens, Cosmos Trading.
MTG is so much indebted to Ms.Millie F. Dizon, Vice President for Marketing Communications, SM Supermalls, Mr. Lucero Ong, Vice President of Collins Trading International, the jurors headed by Prof. Ma. Luisa Villano, Admissions Officer, Miriam College and Dr. Jaime Caro, Assistant Vice President for Development and Director of UPIT Training Center Program.