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At The SEA Games Episode 7: Gold from an unexpected place



By: Aeron Valderrama, Kim Leong, Aldo Tong, Paolo Poblador, and Matthew Li

A medal rush happened on Tuesday, June 8, for Team Philippines at the 28th Southeast Asian Games. However, the gold medal eluded the country in the early part of the day. Most of the results reserved chances for the top plum, only for the ultimate award to come later in the afternoon – from an event most people did not project to deliver. The other interesting development at the conclusion of the day’s events is that there will be one sure gold medal that will be added to our haul.

Which of the sports delivered our lone gold of the day? From where will this bonus gold come from? Read on to know what happened to Team Philippines in that eventful day in Singapore. Here is the day’s edition of At The SEA Games.

Swimming: Pinoy tankers surpass 2013 SEA Games medal output

After three days of the swimming competition at the OCBC Aquatic Centre, the 12-man Philippine swimming team garnered a total of five bronze medals, easily beating the four bronze medal haul in the 2013 SEA Games in Naypyidaw, Myanmar.

The two bronze medals of the day came from the Philippines’ two 2012 London Olympics veterans, Jasmine Alkhaldi and Jessie Khing Lacuna. Alkhaldi was out to redeem herself in the Women’s 100m Freestyle where she initially won the gold medal in the 27th SEA Games, only to be told that a re-swim was to be made the following day because of a faulty starting signal. She would only claim the bronze medal in the re-swim, yielding to Thailand’s Natthanan Junkrajang and Singapore’s Quah Ting Wen.

No such technical malfunction happened in this year’s event and Alkhaldi desperately tried to chase down Quah Ting Wen, who established a significant lead from the beginning, to no avail as the Singaporean went on to establish a new Games record with her time of 55.93. Unfortunately, Alkhaldi was also robbed of the silver medal by Vietnam’s darling Nguyễn Thị Ánh Viên who registered a time of 56.05, 0.05 seconds faster than Alkhaldi’s 56.10 time. Alkhaldi did, however, establish a new Philippine record to go with the bronze medal, her second for the games.

Later in the evening, the Bulacan Bullet, Jessie Khing Lacuna, had the unfortunate task of going up against Singapore’s wonder kid Joseph Schooling and teammate Quah Zheng Wen. In his fourth attempt in the games at landing in the podium, he successfully brought home the bronze medal. While Schooling and Quah Zheng Wen were clearly a notch faster than the rest of the field, Lacuna lead the chase pack most of the way en route to a personal best time of 2:00.89. Schooling erased his old mark by finishing in 1:55.73, while Quah Zheng Wen closely followed him in 1:56.79. Lacuna’s teammate Aldrich McKirdy finished 8th and last with his time of 2:09.74. Lacuna, the reigning UAAP MVP and multiple record-holder, is the first locally trained swimmer competing in this year’s SEA Games to bring home a medal.

With three days left in SEA Games Swimming category, the Philippine tankers are poised to bring home a couple more medals, hopefully better than a bronze. Below is the complete list of swimmers who saw action in Day 3 of the competitions:

Women’s 50m Backstroke
7th Elizabeth Ann Jordana 30.29
9th Roxanne Ashley Yu 31.04

Men’s 50m Freestyle
9th Axel Toni Steven Ngui 24.27

Women’s 100m Freestyle
3rd Jasmine Alkhaldi 56.10*

Men’s 200m Backstroke
5th Jose Joaquin Gonzalez 2:06.74

Women’s 100m Breaststroke
8th Imelda Corazon Wistey 1:13.69
9th Raissa Regatta Gavino 1:15.08

Men’s 200m Butterfly
3rd Jessie Khing Lacuna 2:00.89
8th Aldrich McKirdy 2:09.74

*Philippine National Record

Boxing: 8 out of 10 boxers advance to the last round

It was a great day for the Filipino boxers fighting at EXPO Hall 1 as 80% of the contingent sent won their matches in the penultimate day of amateur boxing competitions in the SEA Games.

In women’s action, Filipino light flyweight Josie Gabuco again opened the boxing festivities for the day. The 2013 PSA Athlete of the Year again dominated her opponent, Singapore’s Leona Hui, in three rounds to advance to the finals. At 2:45pm, flyweight Irish Magno was able to secure a stoppage after two rounds in defeating Thailand’s Sopida Satumrum. Debuting bantamweight Nesthy Petecio swept Indonesia’s Ester Kalayukin in three rounds as well to advance to the finals. It was not a complete sweep by the Filipinas however as featherweight Riza Pasuit succumbed to Indonesia’s Christina Jembay in three rounds.

For the men’s side, light flyweight Rogen Ladon scored a unanimous decision win against Bounphone Lasavongsky. Flyweight Ian Clark Bautista, after barely escaping his opponent in the quarterfinals, made sure that he will advance to the finals in gaining a knockout win against Laos’ Thongbang Seuaphom. The match was stopped at the 1:13 mark of the second round. Bantamweight “Super” Mario Fernandez secured back-to-back stoppages for team Philippines in the day in scoring a TKO victory over Myanmar’s Naing Latt with just two seconds remaining in the round. In the lightweight division, Junel Cantancio won two rounds in defeating Thailand’s Saylom Ardee. It was the same for welterweight Eumir Marcial as he defeated Apichet Saensit with a score of 2-1. In the last fight for the Philippine national boxing team, middleweight Wilfredo Lopez was outclassed by Vietman’s Dinh Hoang Truong in all three rounds of their fight to settle for bronze.

The schedule for the RP Boxing team for the final day of competition are as follows:
June 10, 2015 – EXPO Hall 1, Singapore
2:00pm Women’s Light Flyweight Finals: Josie Gabuco vs. THA’s Chuthamat Raksat
2:15pm Women’s Flyweight Finals: Irish Magno vs. VIE’s Thi Yen Nguyen
2:30pm Women’s Bantamweight Finals: Nesthy Petecio vs. VIE’s Thi Bang Le
3:00pm Men’s Light Flyweight Finals: Rogen Ladon vs. INA’s Kornelis Langu
3:15pm Men’s Flyweight Finals: Ian Clark Bautista vs. SIN’s Mohamed Hanurdeen Hamid
3:30pm Men’s Bantamweight Finals: Mario Fernandez vs. THA’s Tanes Ongjunta
3:45pm Men’s Lightweight Finals: Junel Cantancio vs. VIE’s Van Hai Nguyen
4:15pm Men’s Welterweight Finals: Eumir Felix Marcial vs. SIN’s Tay Jia Wei

Billiards & Snooker: Cue artists deliver bronzes and an all-Filipino finals

It was an interesting day at the OCBC Arena Hall 4 for Team Philippines at the continuing action of the billiards and snooker competitions of the 28th SEAG.

Newly-minted men’s 9-ball doubles champion Carlo Biado continued his fine showing – this time in the singles event – as he dispatched Indonesian legend Ricky Yang, 9-5, in their pre-quarterfinals match. Later in the evening, top Filipino player Dennis Orcollo followed his countryman to the next stage. The SEAG veteran defeated Aung Moe Thu with a similar scoreline.

The rest of the male national cue artists was not as fortunate. Ko Htet of Myanmar overpowered Michael Mengorio in all four racks in the men’s snooker singles to move on to the evening’s finals, relegating the Filipino to bronze. Philippine pool icon Efren ‘Bata’ Reyes and veteran Francisco Dela Cruz could only muster two more bronzes in the men’s 1-cushion carom. Reyes and Dela Cruz lost to Vietnamese Ma Minh Cam (100-84) and Tran Phi Hung (100-87), respectively.

However, all eyes were on the two ladies of the team. And in the lone women’s event of the Games, the Filipinas Chezka Centeno and Rubilen Amit made sure it will be the country’s gold to take. Centeno went down early against Chitchomnart Siraphat of Thailand, 5-2, in their semifinals match. The Thai earlier defeated top-seed Angelica Ticoalu of Indonesia to get to this round. However, the 17-year old from Zamboanga City swept the last five racks to book a place in the gold medal game. Veteran Amit, on her part, had an easier time disposing Burmese Aye Mi Aung, 7-2. The victories of the Centeno and Amit guaranteed a gold and a silver medal for the Philippines.

Softball: Blu Boys escape Indonesia; Blu Girls score emphatic win

Kallang Softball Field saw a thrilling match to open the day in SEA Games Softball action. In a heart-stopping match, the Blu Boys scored a come-from-behind 10-8 victory over Indonesia. The RP Team was down 7-8 going into the seventh inning. Batting from the top and with the bases loaded, a clutch Altomonte popped a huge three RBI double to overtake Indonesia. The defense then locked down the INA batters to secure the win.

In their next match of the day, the Blu Boys knocked the hosts, Singapore, out with an 11-5 win.

Over at the women’s side, the Ana Santiago-mentored Blu Girls scored a third inning mercy rule win against Malaysia. The score was 12-0.

Equestrian: Thrilling first day for Team PH jumping

The Philippine equestrian team’s entries to the jumping event started their campaign at the Games, Tuesday, at the Singapore Turf Club Riding Centre.

In the combined individual qualification and team final, things were not well for all competitors, except for the hometown riders, after the first round. The Philippines was the worst after this phase as they suffered two eliminations from Danielle Santos and Celina Gavieta. The remaining rider, Chiara Amor also suffered four jump penalties (from knocking off obstacles) in her first run. The team had 80 penalties after the round. The national equestriennes did better in the following round to finish in fourth. Gavieta had a perfect run, while Amor and Santos had 16 and eight penalties from jump, for total of 24. Overall, the team ended last in the field of six teams with a combined 104 penalties. Singapore walked away with the gold with zero penalties, while Malaysia (18) and Thailand (20) rounded up the medal podium.

As it is also an individual qualifier, the Philippines’ Amor moves on to the medal rounds of the individual event on Thursday.

Gymnastics: No medals for Team PH


Two male and two females qualified for the individual all-around finals. Rafael Ablaza and Jan Gwynn Timbang represented the Philippines in the men’s division, while Ava Lorein Verdeflor and Elizabeth Ludec represented the country in the female’s division.

In the men’s event, Ablaza managed to finish at a tie for the eighth spot with a total score of 71.600. His best apparatus was vault, wherein he scored 13.700. Timbang, on the other hand, notched the tenth spot with a score of 69.000, with his best mark coming from floor exercise, 13.950. While he was unable to nab a medal in the all-around Finals, Ablaza, alongside compatriot Reyland Capellan, will try for a medal finish in the floor exercise Finals later today.

In the women’s side, Verdeflor failed to make the podium as she placed fourth with a score of 50.400. The 2014 Youth Olympic Games campaigner has her highest score on the vault, which is 13.000. Ludec, on her part, placed sixth overall with 48.550. She also had her best score on the vault with 13.250 points. So close to earning a medal for the country, Verdeflor has another chance when she participates in the uneven bars Finals after she scored 12.650, second highest amongst all competitors, in the qualification round the other day.

Petanque: Bowlers continue to grope for form

After failing to make the finals in the singles category, Arvin Baking and Violeta De La Cruz tried their mettle in the mixed doubles event at Padang.

The pair of Baking and De La Cruz could not overcome their adversaries during the preliminary round of the event. In their first match, they fell to Zhi Ming Cheng and Nur Izzati Ismail of Singapore, 13-6. Things went downhill from there as they scored less and less in their subsequent matches. In their second pairing, they went against against the pair from Cambodia, Sohpon Duch and Chhoeun Thong, and lost, 13-2. In their following assignment, the Filipinos only managed to score a single point against Tin Tin Wai and Kyaw Yin from Myanmar, 13-1. Their worst outing came in their final match against Sarawut Sriboopeng and Nattaya Yoothong of Thailand, as the Filipino pair failed to score, 13-0.

Sailing: PH sailors cruised through qualifying regattas

After enduring days of unfavorable wind conditions, the 28th SEAG sailing tournament’s preliminary races finally continued with the Philippines providing positive results in the course of the three days.

As Tuesday’s events ended, Rubin Cruz sit currently in fourth place at the close of a 9-race series in men’s laser standard with 29 net points (33 total points). All four participating sailors in this event move on to the medal race later today. In the men’s fleet racing keelboat, Filipinos Ridgley Balladares, Rommel Chavez, and Richly Magsanay, were tied with hosts Singapore with 9 points going to the seventh and last race of the event’s qualifiers. The supposed eighth and ninth races of the said event were cancelled. In the men’s windsurfing RSX, Yancy Kaibigan was in fourth position with 20 points going to the last four races of the heats. He was just 5 points away from Indonesian Igm Oka Sulaksana in third place and 2 points ahead of Malaysian Ahmad Danish Abdul Hadi Kame.

On the women’s side, the fleet racing keelboat team gathered 20 points and the end of Race 6, which is good for third place behind Singapore and Malaysia, and just above Thailand. Alaiza Belmonte rounded up the campaign so far with 30 points with one remaining race in the laser radial event.

Shooting: Baldivinio snatches surprise gold

The Philippine national shooters proved their worth last Tuesday as added to the medal collection of the country, with promising results to boot, at the National Shooting Centre.

The female shooters led by 34-year old Elvie Baldivinio pocketed the silver medal in the women’s precision pistol team event with a 1700-60x combined mark. Baldivinio scored 579 with 30 inner tens (x), while teammates Carmelita Guillermo and Franchetta Quiroz had 573-17x and 548-13x, respectively. With that score, Baldivinio moved on to the semifinals of the individual competition, as well; finishing in second place behind Sowsa-nga Pattarasuda.

In the semifinal round, Baldivinio scored a 230-8x to move on to the gold medal match against Norizan Mustafa of Singapore. The Filipina shooter repeated the same score with more inner ten (230-9x) against 2288-6x of Mustafa to give the country its solitary gold medal of the day.

On the other hand, the men’s skeet team of veterans Paul Brian Rosario, Joaquin Ancheta, and Gabriel Tong, ended in fourth after day 1 of qualification. The trio amassed 178 points after three series, which 10 points below Malaysia, which finished third. Rosario registered 64 to rank at seventh place, while Ancheta and Tong scored 60 and 54, respectively, to stay at the bottom of the pack.

Tennis: Contrasting fates for PH netters


Both aiming for a finals seat, the Philippine men’s and women’s tennis teams fought hard, but only one came out with shot at the gold by the end of Tuesday’s rain-delayed action at the Kallang Tennis Centre.

In the men’s division, Ruben Gonzales Jr. easily took the first set of the first singles match against Aditya Sasongko of Indonesia, 6-3. It was a tighter second set, however, as both teams held to their serves. The Filipino veteran had a match point at 5-4, only for the Indonesian to clinch the next two games. Sasongko failed to end the set on his serve at the 12th game, allowing Gonzales to force a tiebreak. The RP Davis Cup standout overpowered his opponent, 7-4, in the decider to win the match in straight sets.

Similar to that final set of the first singles match, the following singles battle between Jeson Patrombon of the Philippines and top-ranked Indonesian Christopher Rungkat went to a tiebreak. This time, it was Rungkat who took the winning game to win the first frame of the match, 7-6(3). He then wasted no time and pummelled the Filipino in the following set, 6-0, to send the semifinals tie to a deciding doubles match. In the third match, Rungkat partnered with Sunu Wahyu Trijanti and dispatched the Philippines pair of world top doubles player Treat Huey and Francis Casey Alcantara, 6-3 6-2.

It was the reverse on the women’s side, as the Philippines dropped their first match against Indonesia, only for them to take the next two en route to securing their place in later’s final. Philippine bet Anna Clarice Patrimonio lost to Jessy Rompies, 1-6 2-6. In the second singles, Fil-German Katharina Lehnert survived a three-set battle against Lavinia Tananta, 6-2 4-6 6-3, to level the tie. Similar to their quarterfinals pairing, Lehnert and Denise Dy clinched it for the country in straight sets, winning over Ayu Damayanti and Rompies, 6-4 7-6(6). The win sent the squad to the gold medal tie with top-seeded Thailand.

Wushu: Close finishes mark end of PH campaign

The Philippine wushu contingent closed their 2015 SEAG participation on a high note by winning more medals, Tuesday, at EXPO Hall 2.

Hometown bet Lee Tze Yuan edged frontrunner Filipino Daniel Parantac to take the gold in men’s optional taijiquan. The Singaporean scored 9.71 over the taijijian champion’s 9.70. Parantac settled for the silver and ended his sixth SEA Games appearance with one gold and two silver medals.

In the men’s optional boardsword, Norlence Catolico registered 9.29 to finish at 10th place. Teammate Dave Degala, as expected, did not participate due to his nagging right knee injury. According to fellow rookie Alieson Ken Omengan, Degala is yet to undergo magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to check the extent of the injury. Over at the other court, in the men’s sanda -60kg bout, Francisco Solis lost to Vietnam’s Hoang Van Cao, 0-2, to get another silver for Team Philippines.

Omengan, on his part, had a successful SEAG debut. The young upstart teamed up with Spencer Bahod and Thronton Sayan to get the country’s third and final silver medal of the day for wushu. The trio scored 9.68, which is only 0.02 shy of the gold medal winning score of the host Singapore’s team of Fung Jin Jie, Tan Xiang Tian, and Tay Wei Sheng.

The wushu team capped off their Games campaign with 1 gold, 4 silvers, and 1 bronze.

Medal Tally as of June 8

Philippine Sports News - Tiebreaker Times At The SEA Games Episode 7: Gold from an unexpected place News