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The hype is justified: La Salle’s Reyes takes +100 crown



After spending a year in residency, transferee Keith Reyes bested six other heavyweights to bag the UAAP Season 78 Men’s Judo heavyweight crown Thursday afternoon at the La Salle Greenhills’ Saint Benilde Gymnasium.

With Ateneo de Manila University’s Matthew Jao graduating, the heavyweight division was a wide-open race. Reyes was able to make quick work of University of the Philippines’ Dave Dimalanta with an osaekomi (pin) just 37 seconds into their match, to advance to the semifinals against last season’s bronze medalist UST’s Kazuki Masaoka.

In the other bracket, Ateneo sophomore Rafael Cadiente was able to escape University of Santo Tomas’ Dither Tablan, who received two penalties. UP’s Ferdinand Rafanan, Cadiente’s opponent in the semifinals, dominated De La Salle University’s Jerrick Soller as well.

Reyes was able to advance to the finals, as the La Sallian defeated Masaoka by points, with a Wazari at the 3:33 mark. On the other hand, UAAP Season 77 silver medalist Cadiente needed just 31 seconds to dispose of Rafanan in the other semifinals match.

The bronze medal matches saw UP’s Dimalanta face-off against fellow Fighting Maroon Rafanan, while UST’s Tablan faced teammate Masaoka in the other bracket. Rafanan was able to best Dimalanta for the first bronze in the heavyweight division. Masaoka was able to salvage the other bronze, besting Tablan in a match that took the entire five minutes of mat time.


Inevitably, La Salle’s Reyes and Ateneo’s Cadiente squared-off in the highly-anticipated finals match. After spending the first two minutes of feeling out and testing each other, Reyes was able to pin Cadiente for the victory.