Calabarzon bets snare rare golden doubles

Joey Villar - The Philippine Star
Calabarzon bets snare rare golden doubles
Raul Payon Jr. sprints to the finish line for the gold in the secondary boys 800-meter run in the Palarong Pambansa at the Quirino Stadium in Bantay, Ilocos Sur.
Joey Mendoza

VIGAN, Ilocos Sur, Philippines — Calabarzon’s Jessel Lumapas and Veruel Verdadero completed a pair of sprint doubles as they won the secondary 200m dash golds with the former anchoring the 4x400m relay team to victory in record-breaking fashion even as National Capital Region racked up golds in various fronts to virtually stretch its Palarong Pambansa reign at the President Elpidio Quirino Stadium yesterday.

NCR tanker Michaela Mojdeh emerged the most bemedalled athlete of the meet with a sixth gold in the elementary girls 100m breaststroke, clocking one minute, 19.59 seconds. She earlier won the 100m fly, 200m individual medley, 50m fly and 4x50m and 4x100m medley relay.

She, however, fell short on her seventh try after settling for silver in 4x1000m medley relay.

Tara Borlain, a former Ironkids champion, snatched the secondary girls 800m victory from fancied Lheslie de Lima of Bicol for her first Palaro gold in 2:19.78.

De Lima, the 3000m and 1500m gold medal winner, took the silver in 2:19.92.

After crossing the finish line, Borlain, 15, went straight to her dad and trainer Ringo to celebrate her victory.

“This is surreal, the feeling is amazing,” said Borlain, who avenged her 3000m defeat to De Lima a few days ago.

Earlier, Lumapas, 17, took the 200m gold in 24.61 seconds ahead of Eastern Visayas’ Decerie Niala (25.16) and Bianca Jane Combate (25.54) to add to her victory in the century dash and 400m for a rare track treble.

After a few minutes rest, Lumapas then led her team of Charlaine and Charmaine de Ocampo and Erica Marie Ruto to the 4x400m gold in 3:53.97, which reset the old mark of 3:54.37 by the same NCR squad she herself powered in San Jose, Antique last year.

It was also Lumapas’ second record-breaking feat after her 400m exploits Thursday.

“These are all products of my training and hard work,” said Lumapas, a Grade 11 student at Dasmariñas East Integrated High School, in Filipino.

Verdadero also topped the boys’ 200m dash in 21.99, beating Western Visayas’ Vince Jayson Buhayan (22.27) and Calabarzon’s Jason Jabol (22.39). 

Verdadero, who ripped the 100m meet mark to become the fastest man here, then helped his team of Joviane Calixto, John Roy Lazaro and Athony Bacle to the secondary 4x400m relay gold in 3:22.34 for his third mint.

Lumapas went for a fifth gold but lost in the 4x100m relay to the NCR side and settled for silver while Verdadero and his 4x100m relay squad likewise failed on their golden bid and wound up third behind winner Western Visayas.

Swimming, meanwhile, continued to produce record-breaking feats with Cagayan Valley’s Jalil Sephraim Taguinod topping the elementary boys 100m breaststroke and NCR’s Thanya Angelyn dela Cruz dominating the secondary girls 100m breaststroke.

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