The Nationals had a tough time yesterday to snare a gold medal. Fortunately, later in the day, Marella Salamat won the country’s sole gold medal in the cycling competition. In addition, the men’s basketball and women’s volleyball team were able to secure impressive wins in the day.
This is At the SEA Games: Episode 10
By: Aeron Valderrama, Joseph Bautista, Aldo Tong, Kim Leong, Joaqui Flores, Migs Flores, Levi Verora, Paolo Poblador, and Matthew Li
Athletics: RP Tracksters salvage two silvers and two bronzes
TEAM PHILIPPINES struggled today to secure more medals as the third day of the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games athletics competition concluded. Despite no one winning gold, the country still managed to obtain two silver medals and two bronze medals, and a national record.
Mervin Guarte, who ran the first track event of the night, won silver in the men’s 1500m run with a time of 3:48.06, was once again being beaten by his rival Van Thai Duong who won the 800m.
Even if Guarte had run his personal best of 3:47.65, he would have still lost to the strong finishing Duong who ran 3:47.04.
Moving up to the distance events, Mary Delos Santos only managed to finish 7th in the women’s 10000m run with a time of 38:40.26.
Hope started to come back with the fast finishing Patrick Unso, who ran 14.12 seconds in the finals of the 110m hurdles, edging out Malaysia’s Muhd Mat Hasan who was just 0.03 seconds behind. Compatriot Clinton Bautista sadly faded away in the middle of the race and finished with a time of 15.01 seconds, placing him in 7th place. Unso’s performance now officially replaces Eric Cray’s existing 110m hurdles national record of 14.17 seconds.
Come the last track event of the night, the Philippines was in the top seed to win the gold medal. SEA Games rookie Joan Caido’s 45.84 second split built up a solid lead coming into the homestretch.
Veteran Edgardo Alejan Jr. managed to take this into his advantage and ran a steady 47.97 second quarter-mile to maintain the lead.
The other SEA Games rookie Ryan Bigyan did not fail to impress. His 46.78 second leg still managed to carry the team into maintaining their gold medal position.
Come anchor Archand Bagsit’s turn, his fast 46.25 second leg was sadly not enough to win the gold. Thailand managed to chase down our anchor into a photo finish, winning with a time of 3:06.81, a measly 0.03 seconds away from the Philippines’ 3:06.84 finish.
In the women’s pole vault, Riezel Buenaventura jumped 3.60m to win the bronze, 0.30m shy from her personal best of 3.90m which would have had her tied for silver. Singapore’s Rachel Yang won silver with a vault of 3.90m. The same fate was to be bestowed upon Philippine hopefuls Tyler Ruiz and Caleb Stuart.
Tyler Ruiz only managed to jump 2.08m, tying with Thailand’s Ratta Kaewkampod. This performance was only 0.05m away from his 2.13m personal best.
Ruiz’s 2.13m personal best would have tied with him Tha
iland’s Nauraj Randhawa and Vietnam’s Van Thuy Dao who both jumped 2.13, but with Randhawa winning gold because of lesser fouls.
On the other hand, Caleb Stuart placed 4th with a throw of 49.37m, getting foul trouble in his 4th and 6th throws.
Narcisa Atienza, the Philippines’ sole representative for the women’s heptathlon, managed to keep her bronze medal position all throughout the first day, scoring 3003 points.
Thailand’s heptathlon duo of Kotchakorn Khamrueangsri and Sunisa Khotseemueang are both ranked at first and second with 3248 points and 3217 points respectively.
With the long jump, javelin throw, and 800m run still to be competed tomorrow, there is still hope for Atienza to increase her ranking.
100m Hurdles: 15.23 seconds
High Jump: 1.69m
Shot Put: 11.72m
200m Dash: 27.06 seconds
Archery: Dela Cruz goes for bronze
In spite of a great performance in the ranking rounds, most of the recurve archers suffered defeats and advanced just one bet into a medal match, at the Kallang Cricket Field.
In the men’s individual event, young upstart Gabriel Moreno took an early exit after another up and coming player from Thailand, Phusawat Natthapoom won 6-2. On the other hand, veteran Florante Matan advanced to the quarterfinals, winning 6-2 over Muhammad Wijaya of Indonesia. Matan would then be eliminated by Phusawat as the younger Thai rampaged into a 7-1 victory. Moreno and Matan could not recover from their losses, as they, along with Mark Javier, suffered the same fate in the men’s team event. Singapore upsets the Filipinos, 6-2, in the quarterfinals.
In the women’s side, Shin Hui Loke of Malaysia blanked Filipina Karen Hongitan in the Round of 16, 6-0. On the other lane, Rachel Dela Cruz upended San Yu Htwe of Myanmar, 7-1, to move on to the last 8. Dela Cruz then edged Indonesian Ika Rochmawati, 6-5, to book a semifinals ticket. Titik Kusumuwardani avenged her teammate’s loss, taking the win in the Final Four against the Filipina with the similar scoreline. Dela Cruz, however, earned a chance at the bronze medal match on Saturday.
The women’s team was not fortunate as they lost to Malaysia, 5-4, in the quarterfinals. The fifth-seed Malaysians upset the fourth-seeded squad of Hongitan, Dela Cruz, and Bianca Gotuaco in the shoot-off. The mixed team of Matan and Hongitan failed to advance to the medal rounds as well as it was again the Malaysians who served them their demise, 2-6.
Basketball: Gilas cadets, Perlas win second straight
The Gilas cadets won its second straight meeting in as many days after trumping Malaysia, 100-48 behind a 21-point explosion from Almond Vosotros. The men’s basketball team used a vaunted full court press to generate turnovers and turn them into scoring possessions in transition.
The women’s squad meanwhile broke lose from a 30-all halftime deadlock and were led by veterans Merenciana Arayi and Cindy Resultay to win 74-63. The win keeps Perlas’ gold medal hopes alive even after a loss to Thailand. Gilas cadets take on Timor Leste while Perlas battles Indonesia on Friday.
Cycling: Salamat snared cycling’s first gold
At the Day 1 of the 28th SEA Games cycling competitions, Team Philippines captured the first gold of the meet at the Marina Bay South.
21-year old Marella Salamat topped the women’s individual time trial with a time of 44:46.38 for the 29.45-km race. Thailand’s Nontasin Chanpeng and Singapore’s Siew Kheng Dinah Chan completed the podium. On the men’s side, defending champion Mark John Galedo failed to get another gold after finishing in sixth with 56:21.59 over the 39.70-km course. His teammate Roland Oranza finished just below the podium in 56:00.34. Galedo’s long-time bridesmaid Indonesia’s Robin Manullang got the mint in this event.
Floorball: Team PH falters in Games debut
The Philippine men’s floorball team dropped their opening game against hosts and powerhouse Singapore, 2-17, at the first official SEA Games floorball tournament, Thursday at the ITE Central.
The Nationals scored just a single goal in the first period after allowing the Singaporeans to three. Mark Polo slotted the ball into the back of the next at the 20th minute. The 2013 SEA Games top squad then scored two more to end the frame leading 4-1.
Polo then scored an early goal in the following period to cut the deficit to two. That goal turned out to be the last hurrah of the Philippines in the match, as favorites Singapore amassed 13 more goals in the span of the two periods to clinch the victory.
Pencak Silat: Mixed results for Day 1
The campaign for the Philippine pencak silat team started, producing different results, Thursday at the EXPO Hall 2.
Entered in three tanding weight classes, two silat practitioners moved on to the semifinals albeit in contrasting fashion. Alshamier Ibnohasim barely broke a sweat to advance in the Final Four of the Class A category after his supposed opponent, Pedro Alves Faria, of Timor Leste withdrew. In the women’s class C quarterfinals, Clyde Joy Baria also assured the country of a medal. The 25-year old Filipina dismantled Siti Che Omar of Malaysia, 4-1.
It was not a sweep, however, as Michael Tesoro dropped his last eight match against Laotian Toto Thammavong. Thammavong drubbed the Filipino, 0-5, to take that sure medal for his country.
Squash: Philippines inch closer to semis
After a surprise bronze medal in the women’s singles, the Philippine squash delegation entered the men’s team group phase matches with high hopes, Thursday, at the Kallang Squash Centre.
Their hopes were dozed off in their first tie, however, as the vaunted Malaysian pummeled the Philippine trio of David Pelino, Ricky Espinola, and Robert Garcia in all three matches. Sanjay S. Chal disposed Pelino 11-1 11-0 11-5 in the first match. In the following match, Espinola kept it close in the second set, but Mudh Kamal Mohd would not be denied of the victory in straight sets. Valentino B. Bong completed the rout for the powerhouse, dismantling top Filipino player Robert Garcia, 11-5 11-7 11-0.
Knowing that they went head-to-head with a strong squad in that first tie, the Philippines bounced back in their last tie of the qualifiers by a drubbing of a stubborn Thailand team. Pelino took the first match over Phuwis Poonsiri in five sets, 11-13 11-7 13-15 11-9 11-8. Espinola then followed it up with another down-the-wire victory against Jivasuwan Natthakit, 11-8 13-11 7-11 10-12 11-3. Garcia then finished off C. Tanjaitrong , 11-6 11-9 6-11 11-7, to secure the win for the Philippines.
Barring any upsets from Thailand over Malaysia, the Philippines will move on the last four and will face the top team of the other group, which could be either Indonesia of hosts Singapore.
Tennis: PH netters move on to the semis
The Philippine tennis team secured several medals in the continuing action of the 28th SEAG competitions after they booked semifinals berths in the different events, Thursday, at the Kallang Tennis Centre.
In the women’s singles, Katharina Lehnert disposed Laotian Philavong Phonephathep, 6-1 6-0, in their quarterfinals match. UAAP MVP Anna Clarice Patrimonio failed to make it two Filipino qualifiers after she suffered a straight sets lost against Lertcheewakarn Noppawarn, 3-6 2-6. In the men’s side, remaining bet Jeson Patrombon avenged his team tie lost to top Indonesian player Christopher Rungkat, 6-2 7-6, to book his place in the Final Four.
Both men’s doubles duo of Patrombon and Reuben Gonzales Jr., and Treat Huey and Francis Casey Alcantara advanced to the semifinals by virtue of the last eight wins against Indonesian tandems. Patrombon and Gonzales pulled through past Aditya Sasongko and David Susanto, 7-6 6-4, while Huey and Alcantara came from behind to dispatch Rungkat and Sunu Wahyu Trijati in three sets, 4-6 6-3 [10-5]. Huey and Alcantara also took revenge of their loss in the men’s team semifinals against the same pair, which cost them the possible gold medal.
In the other event, Lehnert along with women’s doubles partner Denise Dy scraped past hometown bets Li Yun Stefanie Tan and Khee Yen Wee, 6-4 7-5, to move on to the second round.
Waterski: Young bloods shine in SEAG Day 1
It was the first day of the 28th SEAG waterski competitions and the Philippines was off to a good start with our entries making it into the next phase.
15-year old Maiquel Selda placed second in her heat of the women’s wakeboard event, scoring 34.44 , to directly advance to the later’s final. In the men’s side, Mark Howard Griffin topped his heat with 68.33 to similarly secure his berth in the medal round. Angelo Linao scored 51.67 to place fourth in his heat, which is not enough for direct qualification. The road for the Linao soon ended after registering 47.00 in the last-chance qualifiers, placing him in fourth with only two athletes progressing.
Water Polo: Team PH overwhelmed in SEA Games return
The rebuilding Men’s Water Polo squad of the Philippines returned to the SEA Games scene after skipping the last edition on a rather low note, suffering a 22-6 defeat at the hands of the 2013’s runners-up Indonesia.
Centre forward Juan Paolo Serrano single-handedly kept the game close by scoring three goals during the 1st period, which ended at 6-3 in favor of Indonesia. It would be clear though that the Indonesians are much more experienced and ready for the competition as they scored another six goals in the second period compared to the Philippines’ lone goal courtesy of driver Reynaldo Salonga Jr.
Indonesia, which has seen a steady improvement in its performance during the games in the past decade, utilized an effective counter-attack style of play to leave the Philippines’ goalkeeper Tani Gomez Jr. alone to defend the cage. Even with his decade-long experience, it would just be too much to handle for the captain as the Indonesians further blanked the Philippine squad in the third period and scored a third string of six goals.
The final period would be was a bit closer as SEA Games veteran Norton Alamara opened the period with a penalty goal and Salonga scored moments after with his trademark long shot. Unfortunately, the last four goals of the game went to Indonesia.
Team Philippines returns to action at the OCBC Aquatic Centre tomorrow against Malaysia as they hope to bounce back from the loss and land in the podium at the end of the games.
Shooting: Ang finishes third in Men’s Trap qualifications
44-year old trap veteran Eric Ang placed third in the first day of men’s trap shooting qualifiers yesterday held at the National Shooting Centre. Ang compiled scores of 24, 24, and 21 in the series to accumulate a score of 69. Day 2 of the qualifications will be held today.
However, the team of Ang, Hagen Alexander Topacio, and Miguel David Laperal missed a podium finish, just two points shy of bronze. Ang (24, 24, 21), Topacio (24, 22, 21), and Laperal (18, 20, 20) accumulated a score of 194. The bronze and silver medal finishers, Malaysia and Thailand respectively, accumulated 196 points each.
Bowling: Philippines ends bowling drought, bags bronze for first medal
Third time’s the charm. This old saying proved to be one of the best ways to describe the third day of the 2015 SEAG Bowling Tournament for our Filipino athletes as they finally break into the top three and bring home their first medal.
Trio Block 1
Taking a different spin from the first two days of tournament, athletes from both the Men’s Trio and the Women’s Trio took to the lanes at the same time to show their worth as they fight for their respective countries.
Thankfully for the Philippines, one team did just that as the trio of Marie Alexis Sy, Maria Arles, and Lara Posadas,known as Philippines-2, broke through the top three and landed at the second position for the first block of the Women’s Trio after scoring a total of 1931. Supporting their efforts were Philippines-1, consisting of Liza del Rosario, Krizziah Tabora,and Liza Clutario,who although failed to break into the three still did respectably well after landing sixth out of 12 teams.
While their female compatriots did well as they finally shook off their rotten luck during the first two days, the men of the PHI bowling team seems failed to outrun theirs as they still proved to be the worst performing country in the first block of the Men’s Trio after a dismal 11th place finish for Philippines-1 consisting of Kenneth Chua, Jo-Mar Jumapao, and Enrico Hernandez and a 13th place finish, out of 14 competing teams, for Philippines-2 consisting of Jonas Baltasar, Kevin Cu, and Frederick Ong.
Trio Block 2
Entering the second block with the highest finish from a PHI team for the SEAG 2015, the trio of Sy, Arles,and Posadas seemed to have suffered a slight setback from residual remains of their bad luck as they ended the day with only the bronze after a total score of 36088. Despite their fall, the trio of del Rosario, Tabora, and Clutario, however, seemed to have improved their game as they ended the day climbing the ranks to land at fifth.
Improvements from the men’s were also seen as the trio of Chua, Jumapao, and Hernandez were able to slightly improve their standing to 10th place while the trio of Baltasar, Cu, and Ong remained planted at 13th. While clearly another dismal finish from both trios, a sudden streak of bad luck from both Vietnam-1 and Vietnam-2 in the second block of the Men’s Trio were able to save them from once again being the worst performing bowling team for the day.
Volleyball: Opposite results for Men’s and Women’s squads
After an impressive debut by the men’s national volleyball team, sparks flew as the Myanmar Men’s Volleyball Team dominated the Pinoys in straight sets 25-16, 25-14, 33-31 in the 2015 Southeast Asian Games hosted by Singapore.
The Nationals seemed perplexed for much of the match. Unable to get any offense cooking, the Philippines let Myanmar waltz all over them through the destructive beauty of Aung Thu’s attacks. Myanmar’s high-flying open hitter, Thu rattled off a game-high 27 points off 24 attacks, two aces, and a block. Unable to find a response, the Philippines found themselves on the wrong end of an 2-0 sets gap. Through the invigorated play of Benilde’s John Vic De Guzman and Ateneo’s Marck Jesus Espejo, the Pinoys were able to keep the third set close throughout. Espejo even found himself in a heated exchange of stares and words with Htway midway through the set resulting in the Myanmar national incurring a yellow card. With things looking dim as Myanmar held match point at 21-24, the Pinoys made a valiant rally, forcing a deuce as Myanmar coughed up untimely errors. The Philippines struggled to gain advantage but was able to craft out a momentary window of opportunity as an Espejo attack gave them their only set point chance at 30-29. Unfortunately, Marck Jesus was unable to deliver his team to another set and his late errors proved costly with Myanmar pulling out the close win.
For the women’s national team, After a decade-long absence from the tournament and a heartbreaking loss yesterday, the Philippine Women’s Volleyball team redeemed themselves and made history with sweet straight-set win over the Malaysia 25-15, 25-18, 25-16 in the 2015 Southeast Asian Games hosted by Singapore.
The Nationals’ offense was simply too powerful for the Malaysians to control. Though Malaysia had more blocks and aces, the Philippines blasted their defense, converting 40 attacks to Malaysia’s measly 17. The Pinays were also incredibly efficient, incurring only 19 errors while Malaysia coughed up 29 of their own, mostly from errant services.
Golf: RP Golf team falls to fourth
The Philippines took a step backward in the third round of the 28th SEA Games Golf tournament by ending the day ranked at fourth together with Malaysia.
The Pinoy Golfers’ third round performance saw Dan Emilio Cruz having 78 points while Weiwei Gao contributed 72. In addition, fellow golfers Aniceto Mandanas and Ruperto Zaragoza had 75 markers apiece.
For the individual rankings, Gao is now the highest-ranked Pinoy golfer with him sitting at fourth place. However, he shares his seat atop at fourth place with Kasidit Lepkurte of Thailand.
Meanwhile, the other Pinoy golfers are not far behind in the individual standings with Mandanas and Zaragoza ranked at 18th, and Cruz at 28th.
Petanque: Pinays bow out of tournament
The pair of Violeta De La Cruz and Ara Joana Benito from the Philippines had one last match in the women’s doubles preliminary round. They went up against Siti Zubaidah Abu Talib and Nur Tahira Tasnim from Malaysia, and unfortunately for the Pinays they were unable to come out victorious as they lost, 13-2.
Rowing: Cordova almost gets bronze
In the first day of rowing, six Filipinos participated in four events, women’s lightweight single, men’s single sculls, men’s lightweight doubles, and men’s pair.
Meicah Jen Caballero represented the Philippines in the women’s lightweight single, finishing with a record of 1:51.51 for fifth place. For the men’s sculls event, Nestor Cordova finished just shy of a bronze medal with a record of 1:36.39 for a fourth place finish. In the men’s lightweight double event, the Philippines ended up in fourth place once again; Edgar Ilas and Benjamin Jr Tolentino finished the race with a 1:27.86 record. The last event of the day had Pinoys Roque Abala Jr and Alvin Amposta end the men’s pair with a record of 1:32.48. They ended at sixth place.
Swimming: PH Tankers end SEA Games campaign on a high note
With only four entries to the 27th SEA Games in Naypyidaw, Myanmar, the Philippines went home with four bronze medals, a low in recent memory. At the 28th SEA Games in Singapore though, Team Philippines sent 12 tankers leading them to a total of two silver medals and eleven bronze medals as the swimming competition came to a close at the OCBC Aquatic Centre.
A couple of heartbreaking losses marred the team in the past five days and many of the tankers had to settle for bronze. During the final day, however, veterans Joshua Hall and Jessie Khing Lacuna powered Team Philippines to two silver medals while Jasmine Alkhaldi earned two more bronze medals.
The evening began with high spirits as Hall topped the morning heats in the Men’s 50m Breaststroke to put him in a good position to win the gold. However, he was up against reigning champion and record-holder Indra Gunawan of Indonesia. Hall’s new Philippine record of 28.32 seconds was not enough to overcome Gunawan who touched in at 28.27 seconds. Malaysia’s Wong Fu Kang rounded out the podium with his time of 28.67 seconds.
Right after the quick men’s event was another sprint event, the Women’s 50m Freestyle, where Alkhaldi was simply overcome by hometown favorites Amanda Lim and Quah Ting Wen of Singapore. Lim, also the defending champion, reset her games record with her time of 25.59 seconds. Coming in at only 0.01 seconds after was Quah Ting Wen who registered a time of 25.60. Alkhaldi touched next with her new Philippine record of 25.79.
Later in the evening, a fired up Lacuna went head to head with Malaysia’s Welson Wee Sheng Sim in the Men’s 400m Freestyle. Lacuna remained a stroke behind Sim for all but the final lap in the mid-distance event. Sim would end up shaving 0.02 seconds off the games record by clocking 3:53.97 as Lacuna touched next in 3:55.34, a new Philippine record. Singapore’s Pang Sheng Jun came in at 3:57.60 to land the bronze.
SEA Games 2015 would be capped off by Alkhaldi’s sixth bronze medal, this time in the Women’s 100m Butterfly. In a similar fashion, Alkhadli came behind a Singaporean duo in Tao Li and Quah Ting Wen. Tao Li mounted a huge lead before losing steam in the last segment of the race. Her time of 59.79 seconds was still good enough for the gold. Quah Ting Wen came next in 1:00.30 while Alkhaldi, who again established a new Philippine record, managed to touch in at 1:01.00. Filipino tanker Hannah Dato ended 7th in the same event with her time of 1:01.94.
All in all, the Filipino tankers not only improved on their SEA Games performance but also showed signs that there will be more to come as the Philippines hopes to regain lost glory in the event.
Below is the complete list of swimmers who saw action in the sixth and final day of the competition:
Men’s 50m Breaststroke
2nd Joshua Hall 28.32*
Women’s 50m Freestyle
3rd Jasmine Alkhaldi 25.79*
Men’s 50m Backstroke
9th Axel Toni Steven Ngui 27.61
Women’s 200m Breaststroke
8th Raissa Regatta Gavino 2:43.12
10th Imelda Corazon Wistey 2:46.42
Men’s 400m Freestyle
2nd Jessie Khing Lacuna 3:55.34*
9th Jose Joaquin Gonzalez 4:09.07
Women’s 100m Butterfly
3rd Jasmine Alkhaldi 1:01.00*
7th Hannah Dato 1:01.94
Men’s 4x100m Medley Relay
Jose Joaquin Gonzalez (0:59.02)
Joshua Hall (1:02.65)
Jessie Khing Lacuna (0:54.42)
Axel Toni Steven Ngui (0:52.00)
*Philippine National Record