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Parañaque City’s Mark Dula outshines Micaela Mojdeh in Batang Pinoy


Newbie Mark Bryan Dula of Parañaque City upstaged his more illustrious teammate Micaela Jasmine Mojdeh by raking in four gold medals on Wednesday, to become the first quintuple winner in the Luzon Leg of the 2019 Philippine National Youth Games-Batang Pinoy at the Isabela Sports Complex pool in Isabela.

Making his Batang Pinoy debut, the 12-year-old Dula made sure he would be remembered. He took golds in the 200-meter and 100m backstroke and 100m and 50m butterfly for boys 12-under in one fell swoop to complete a sweep of his five events.

Dula, who snared the 50m back the day before, clocked two minutes and 44.46 seconds in the 200m back; 1:08.82 in 100m fly; 1:14.71 in 100m back; and 30.78 in 50m fly all in the morning events at the pool. He overtook the more popular Mojdeh, the national juniors record holder, who only has four gold medals at press time.

“I’m using this event to prepare for my first Palarong Pambansa appearance,” said Dula in Filipino.

The 12-year-old Mojdeh – who zoomed to a blazing two-gold haul in 200m and 400m individual medley in Day One – added two more by winning the girls’ 13-15 100m fly in 1:06.30 and 50m fly in 30.44 to hike her total to four.

She will have a chance to join Dula in that elite five-gold club if she tops the 200m fly on Thursday.

And she will. “I’m confident of my chances. My goal is to improve my time,” said Mojdeh.

Over in centerpiece athletics, Dasmarinas, Cavite’s Ron Gabriel Villa heaved 35.24m to cop the boys’ discus throw gold ahead of teammate Con Prince David with 33.30m and Baguio’s Kurt Errol Calalong with 30.33m.

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Also striking golds at the track were Bulacan’s Marvelyn Canon (girls’ long jump); Camarines Sur’s Leslie de Lima (girls’ 1500m); and Baguio’s Hussein Lorana (boys’ 1500m).

In archery, Baguio’s Aton Yuan Jucutan became the first double gold medalist in the sport by topping the boys’ cub 20m and 30m.

Also reigning supreme were Baguio City’s Danielle Espiritu (girls’ cadet 30m); Dagupan’s Janina Erica Dolosa (girls’ cub 20m); Pasig’s Guillana Venice Garcia (girls’ bowman 30m); Makati’s Cassandra Louise Enecio (girls’ yeoman 20m); and Sophia Kyran Manuel (girls’ cub 30m); Marikina’s Sean Jonathan Tanco (boys’ cadet 40m); and Pangasinan’s Zhyrine Shayne Bastasa (girls’ cadet 40m).

In arnis, Jharie Matthew Masangcay of Pasig City topped the junior boys’ individual single weapon, while teammate Irish Rueco ruled the junior girls’ traditional individual double weapon.

In taekwondo, Baguio’s Magnus Carlus Garcia (welterweight); Nueva Ecija’s Jude Francis Rubio (light middle); Baguio’s Marc Gianne Racadio (middle); and Pangasinan’s Alexander Joseph Calpito (light heavy) all captured golds.

Other taekwondo winners were San Jose Del Monte, Bulacan’s Benedict Lance Viola (fin); Makati’s Aldrich Paul Vincent Merin (fly); Nueva Ecija’s Gilwayne Timothy Alsol (bantam); Baguio’s Raphael Jose Patting (feather); and Dasmarinas’ Prince Isaac Jazul (light).

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