Negros Occidental swimmers harvested 26 gold, 17 silver, and six bronze medals from the Panaad pool yesterday to strengthen the host province’s bid for a 19th overall championship in the 2012 Western Visayas Regional Athletic Association Meet at the Panaad Park and Sports Stadium in Brgy. Mansilingan, Bacolod City.
The Negrense swimmers showed their dominance by taking the gold in 200m elementary and boys and girls’ and 400m secondary boys and girls’ freestyle, 100m elementary girls’ and 100m secondary girls’ backstroke, 50m elementary boys and girls’ and 200m boys and girls’ butterfly, all four divisions in 4x50m medley relay, 50m elementary boys and girls’ and 200m secondary girls’ breastroke, all four divisions in 200m medley, 100m elementary girls and 100m secondary boys and girls’ free, 4x100m elementary boys and girls and 4x100m secondary girls’ medley relay.
Iloilo won the gold in 100m elementary and secondary boys’ backstroke, and the 4x100m secondary boys’ medley, while Antique also had three gold medals from 50m elementary boys’ butterfly, 100m elementary boys’ freestyle, and 200m secondary boys’ breastroke.
Negros also edged Iloilo by one gold in the second day of competition in athletics with Bacolod Tay Tung High School second year student Mary Ann Diesto, Escalante athlete Richie Cabanyog, Molocaboc, Sagay City six grader Cezar Fernandez, and grade schooler Sheinne Sanchez booking their second gold medals in their respective events.
Diesto added the secondary girls’ triple jump to her golden collection, while Fernandez did the same in elementary boys’ triple jump, Sanchez in elementary girls’ discus throw, and Cabanyog in secondary boys’ discus throw.
Diesto’s bid for a third gold in the meet at the 100m run was spoiled by fellow Negrense sprinter and Palarong Pambansa campaigner Erma Rose Gamao who was a fraction of a second ahead of Diesto at the finish line.
Negros’ Reymart Dela Cruz also earned the distinction as the fastest runner in the meet by topping the secondary boys’ 100m sprint with his time of 11.16 seconds, prevailing by hairline of a margin against Iloilo’s Julius Carl Gerona who registered 11.19 seconds. Capiz’ Marvin Carlo grabbed the bronze with 11.21 seconds.
Ilonggo runner Luz Talaron prevented a Negros shutout in the 100 meters by winning the gold in elementary girls’ division against Negros’ Joycie Beranio, who settled for silver, and teammate Rhea Mae Las Piñas for the bronze.
Other gold medalists for Negros Occidental in yesterday’s athletics events were Eliseo Cortez Jr. in elementary boys’ 400m hurdles, Ceasar Ian Oberes in elementary boys’ 100-meter, and Jun Montalbo in secondary boys’ 3000m steeple chase.
Iloilo, on the other hand, remained poise to keep its overall title in athletics with eight gold medals in Day 2 from Leonard Dela Cruz in elementary boys’ discus throw, Pia Barcino in elementary girls’ triple jump, Lorenzo Capajo, also winning his second gold, in secondary boys’ triple jump, record breaker Joneza Mae Sustituedo in secondary girls’ 3000 meters, Ezel Divinagracia and Nilcer Navarro in elementary girls and secondary boys’ 400m hurdles, and Luz Talaron in elementary girls’ 100 meters.*NAB
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