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UAAP 86 Swimming: Rian Tirol sets pace for Ateneo, breaks league record in 50m

Rian Tirol made a significant impact for Ateneo de Manila University on the second day of the UAAP Season 86 Men’s Swimming Championships on Friday night at the Teofilo Yldefonso Swimming Pool in Malate, Manila.

The 30th Southeast Asian Games campaigner broke the season’s first individual UAAP collegiate record during the preliminary session of the Men’s 50m Breaststroke with a time of 29.23 seconds. He returned to the pool in the afternoon final to lower his mark to 29.10 seconds, securing a gold medal in the event.

When asked about his goal heading into the race, Tirol said, “Getting the record was always at the back of my head, but all I wanted to do was swim my race and do my best because I know I prepared for this. The record was just a bonus, but I’m very happy that I got that new record.”

Tirol’s teammate, Rafael Isip, secured second place with a time of 29.83 seconds, resulting in a 1-2 finish for the Blue Eagles. Josemarie Mapa of University of the Philippines took the bronze in 29.97 seconds.

Later, Tirol and Isip, along with Charles Ticbaen and Rafael Barreto, dominated the Men’s 4x100m Freestyle Relay in a tightly contested race. The Blue Eagles registered a time of 3:38.46, with De La Salle University finishing second in 3:39.10, and UP rounding out the podium in 3:40.49.UAAP86-SWIMMING-MEN-200-LC-BACKSTROKE-ATENEO-PHILLIP-SANTOS-8498 UAAP 86 Swimming: Rian Tirol sets pace for Ateneo, breaks league record in 50m ADMU DLSU News Swimming UAAP UP UST  - philippine sports news

Ateneo secured a third gold medal with last year’s Most Valuable Player, Phillip Joaquin Santos, dominating the Men’s 200m Backstroke. His time of 2:09.70 was significantly ahead of John Neil Paderes (2:12.80) of University of Santo Tomas and Estifano Ramos (2:14.74) of DLSU.

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Despite that, Ted Laminta (4:11.47) claimed a gold medal for the Green Tankers in the Men’s 400m Freestyle, keeping Ateneo’s sophomore dynamic duo of Joshua Del Rio (4:12.58) and Marco Daos (4:13.00) at bay, who finished second and third, respectively.

The day’s surprise came from Jules Mirandilla of UST, securing an upset win for the Tiger Sharks in the Men’s 100m Butterfly. Mirandilla clinched a come-from-behind victory in 55.92 seconds against Ateneo’s Barreto (56.01) and Daos (56.80).

When asked about his surprise win, Mirandilla shared, “Yes, kasi, ano, isa rin si Rafael [Barreto] sa ano ko eh, sa tinitingala ko na isang swimmer. Kaya masaya ako na naka-isa ako sa kanya… ayun masaya po ako.”

Nevertheless, the Blue Eagles still amassed three golds, three silvers, and two bronze medals for the day, reaching 205 points and extending their lead against DLSU (154), UP (110), and UST (72) at the halfway mark.4X100-LC-FREESTYLE-RELAY-WOMENS-CHAMPION-UP-ANN-PURISIMA-MARY-LACSON-GENE-QUIAMBAO-ANGELA-VILLAMIL UAAP 86 Swimming: Rian Tirol sets pace for Ateneo, breaks league record in 50m ADMU DLSU News Swimming UAAP UP UST  - philippine sports news

Meanwhile, the women from UP secured gold medals in all but one event in the day, maintaining their lead in the overall team standings. With four golds, one silver, and one bronze medal, the Lady Maroons totaled 198 points against Ateneo’s 161, DLSU’s 92, and UST’s 82.

Highlighting UP’s performance for the day was another record-breaking feat in the Women’s 4x100m Freestyle Relay.

The team of Atasha Dela Torre, Cindy Fernandez, Mary Louise Lacson, and Angela Villamil outclassed their rivals in a new UAAP record time of 4:10.50. Ateneo only managed a time of 4:13.00 to land second, while DLSU came third at 4:14.85.

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Speaking for the team on their mindset and preparation, senior Lady Maroon Angela Villamil shared: “I think the mindset for them, since for some of them it’s their first time, was to have fun, just enjoy the relay. I told them no matter what the outcome, we’re still gonna be proud of them. I think, for me, it was more than just defending the record from last year, but rather to focus on our goal. So I’m really, really proud of everyone.” 

Freshman Dela Torre added, “We just wanted to have fun during the relay. For me, it’s my first time playing here in UAAP, and I wanted to just swim for the school and for the team.”

Indeed, the rookies of UP seemed to be having a lot of fun on the second day of hostilities as two other rookies landed gold medals in separate individual events.

Julianna Villanueva (4:40.85) reigned supreme in the Women’s 400m Freestyle ahead of senior teammate Regina Castrillo (4:41.28) to provide a 1-2 finish for UP. Hannah Sanchez of DLSU secured the bronze in 4:42.94.UAAP86-SWIMMING-WOMEN-200-LC-BACKSTROKE-UP-QUENDY-FERNANDEZ-8503 UAAP 86 Swimming: Rian Tirol sets pace for Ateneo, breaks league record in 50m ADMU DLSU News Swimming UAAP UP UST  - philippine sports news

On the other hand, Quendy Fernandez snagged the gold for UP in the Women’s 200m Backstroke with her time of 2:23.70. Ateneo rounded out the podium with rookie Mishka Sy (2:25.87) and Samantha Coronel (2:27.86), flanking Fernandez in the second and third spots, respectively.

To cap off the stellar performance of the women of UP on Day 2, Camille Buico clocked a fast time of 1:03.75 in the Women’s 100m Butterfly, winning her second gold of the season. Rookie of the Year contender Shairinne Floriano of UST put up a good fight but lost by a hair to Buico, touching in at 1:03.80. Sy of Ateneo secured the bronze in 1:05.23.

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In the only event conceded by UP for the day, UST’s sole finalist, Alyza Ng, bagged the gold in the Women’s 50m Breaststroke with a time of 33.90 seconds, edging out Ateneo’s Annika Isip (34.90) and UP’s Mary Christine Llorente (35.28).

The penultimate day of action will feature the 200m Freestyle, 100m Breaststroke, 50m Butterfly, 100m Backstroke, 400m Individual Medley, and the 4x50m Freestyle Relay.

Morning preliminaries begin at 8:30 a.m. while the afternoon finals commence at 3:00 p.m.

Written By

Kristine graduated from ADMU and was a former member of the FAST Ateneo Swimming team. She considers playing for Ateneo the highlight of her college years. Aside from following all things swimming, she is an avid football fan and hopes to one day watch an international football game like the LaLiga, Premier League, or the FIFA World Cup.

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