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Sacho Ilustre makes early case for MVP as La Salle ends Day 1 on top

LOS BAÑOS, LAGUNA — La Salle leaned on the masterful performance of Southeast Asian Games-bound Sacho Ilustre and the rest of its swimmers, grabbing the top spot after Day 1 of the UAAP Season 82 Men’s Swimming Championships, Thursday at the Trace Aquatic Center.

The previous season’s top rookie made case for this year’s Most Valuable Player plum after bagging the golds in both the 100 and 800-meter freestyle events, to put the title favorites up at 77 points.

Ilustre topped Miguel Barlisan of Ateneo and Christian Anor of University of Santo Tomas in the 100 meters with 52.07, just 0.01 seconds ahead of Barlisan. Anor touched in third at 53.40. The second-year Green Tanker then took the 800 meters title at 8:53.09, ahead of Ateneo’s Ianiko Limfilipino and University of the Philippines’ Keane Ting, who finished at 9:01.51 and 9:02.97, respectively.

The Green Tankers opened the night with the gold as well, with Gummy Torres, Jexter Chua, McTracy Alindogan, and Alfonso Bautista coming in at 1:49.12. Ateneo came in second at 1:50.14 with Akiva Carino, Joshua Taleon, Drew Magbag, and Dominic Buhain at 1:50.14; while UST bagged the bronze at 1:51.75 with Kevin Dagum, Jay Cabulit, Joshua Alvaran, and Renz Gawidan.

The UST Tigersharks with Juan Abad, Russel Latorre, Angelo Dela Cruz, and Christian Anor snared the other relay gold with 8:10.93 in the 800-meter freestyle relay. UP finished with the silver as Joshua Vitangcol, Kyle Bagusto, Sebastian Arcilla, and Patrick Galvez ended at 8:17.96. La Salle then capped their great night with the bronze with 8:23.13 off Kelles Que, Alnair Guevarra, Antoine Mendoza, and Richmond Santos.

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Defending five-time champion Ateneo was not far behind at second with 73 points, paced by the gold of Limfilipino in the 200-meter individual medley. The second-year Atenean finished at 2:13.54, even as Fighting Maroons Sebastian Arcilla and Andrae Pogiongko took the silver and bronze at 2:15.69 and 2:15.84, respectively.

UP rounds out the top three after the night’s events with 60 points.

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