Baguio’s Golden Boys and Girls

Wow. Seems like athletes from Baguio are winning — should we say, dominating — the third Philippine Olympic Festival for Central Northern Luzon which is being held in Subic Bay, Olongapo. Here’s a report from the Inquirer on the feats of Baguio athletes. You can read the earlier reports here and here. Go, Baguio.

Baguio sustains POF golden charge
SUBIC—Baguio City nailed five more golds in athletics, two of them from opening-day winners, in the Central Northern Luzon qualifying games of the third Philippine Olympic Festival at Remy Field inside the Subic Bay Freeport Zone here.

Oliver Gabriel ruled the boys’ javelin throw and Eduardo Ferrer pocketed the gold in the 200-meter dash to match the feat of double-gold winner Maria Melissa Naputo, who reigned supreme in the girls’ long jump and 100 hurdles Wednesday.

A son of a gardener and housekeeper, Gabriel tossed the spear to a distance of 48.38 meters with Ilocos Norte’s Abner Coloma a far second at 43.90. Cesar Espejo of Ilocos Norte did 43.81 for the bronze.

Gabriel, 16, seized the shotput gold on Wednesday by casting the iron sphere to 10.58m, more than three meters ahead of the 7.38 effort of runner-up Armando Diwa of Olongapo.

Ferrer, 14, completed a sprint double by topping the 200m in 23 seconds while beating Jameson Hipolito of Olongapo for the second straight day.

Hipolito, the 100m runner-up, again settled for the silver (23.9 seconds) while Ricardo Crisostomo of La Union wound up third (25.1).

A Baguio City National High sophomore, Ferrer hopes to land another gold in the boys’ 4×100 relay on Friday.

Marla Felice Ellaga sustained Baguio’s golden run with a 10.59m performance in the triple jump for girls and denied Naputo a third gold.

Naputo registered 10.57m for the silver while Ilocos Norte’s Florence Acacio (10.22m) copped the bronze.

Catherine Aviles ruled the 10,000m and Irish Dimfle Velasco dominated the 400m hurdles as Baguio raised its golden haul in athletics to 15 overall.

Ilocos Norte’s Fatima Mitra and La Union’s Jonathan Leyga and Leonilyn Sarmiento managed to salvage a gold to prevent a Baguio sweep.

Mitra won the girls’ shot put with a throw of 8.26m. Leyga and Sarmiento nailed the gold in the boys’ 400m hurdles and girls’ 200m dash, respectively.

Baguio ended the day with another gold in girls’ softball after a 15-0 rout of Olongapo City in the finals.

In badminton, Pampanga’s Gabby Villanueva subdued Sherwin Simangan of Cagayan Valley, 21-12, 21-15, in the men’s open singles to arrange a semifinal duel with Bulacan’s Edison Mendoza, a 21-16, 8-21, 21-19 victor over provincemate Rodel Dawal.

Jimson Dionisio of Bulacan defeated Pampanga’s John Paul Taupo, 21-13, 21-7 while Bulacan’s Paulo Dawal squeezed past provincemate Angelito Flores, 21-15, 20-22, 21-18, to set up the other semifinal encounter.

Cagayan Valley clobbered Pampanga, 86-71, in basketball while Angeles City pulled off a 77-66 win over host Olongapo as both teams remain unbeaten with two victories each.

UPDATE: Baguio keeps overall title according to this Inquirer report.

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