Trinidad, RTU bets shine in Abap-Luzon slugfestBy Roy Luarca
Philippine Daily Inquirer
IBA, Zambales—Homegrown talent Lloyd Trinidad provided an explosive finish to the PLDT-Abap Luzon Area Boxing Championship when he stopped Kabaka’s Alkhuzeem Abdul Aziz and hogged the spotlight with the Rizal Technological U (RTU) fighters on Friday night at Capitol Park here.
The 18-year-old Trinidad tagged Aziz with a right cross to the chin, sending the Mapua high school student to the canvas with one minute and 26 seconds gone in the first round. Abdul was able to beat the count but the referee stopped the contest due to the head blow he sustained.
“Na-tiyempo (a timely hit),” said Trinidad.
RTU emerged the winningest team with three gold medals courtesy of Porferio Asis Jr., Stephen Bontoya and Mark Alex Brin, nephew of three-time Olympian Romeo Brin.
Asis found his range in the third round and extracted a 9-6 victory over Aldrin Tatunay in their junior boys’ light flyweight (48 kg) battle. The score was tied at 5 after two rounds, until Asis caught Tatunay with snappy hooks.
Bontoyan won over Tayabas’ Jeric Ferrer, 15-12, in their spirited battle for the junior boys’ light bantam (52 kg) gold.
The rangy Brin, on the other hand, subdued Tayabas’ Richard Adora, 17-10, to rule the youth boys’ pinweight (46 kg) division.
Bantamweight Melvin Jakaran gave Zambales its second gold when he edged RTU’s Jovan Krist Solmoro, 8-7, in their battle for the youth boys’ bantam (56 kg) crown.
Hundreds of spectators erupted in celebration when Iba’s Jess Ganayan broke out of a 5-5 standoff in the second round and bested Sorsogon’s Jayson Foster, 9-6, for the youth boys’ flyweight (52 kg) gold.
Sorsogon’s Fernel Gaspi, 16-year-old nephew of national head coach Pat Gaspi, trounced Tayabas’ Aldrin Signar, 12-7, to clinch the junior boys’ pinweight (46 kg) title.
San Fernando took its lone gold through Ryan Torres, who whipped Sorsogon’s Charlie Foster, 15-3, in their youth boys’ light flyweight (49kg) tussle.
Though Tayabas sent four boxers to the finals, only Jessie Diaz emerged triumphant when he pounced on a fading Lawrence Ordonio of San Fernando City to secure a 14-5 victory in the junior boys’ flyweight (50 kg) division.
The winners, along with their counterparts from the Visayas (Bago City) and Mindanao (Gen. Santos City) regionals, will advance to the National Finals next month.
Boxing association executive director Ed Picson said even nonmedalists can qualify if Gaspi and fellow national coach Nolito Velasco deem they have the potential to excel in the future.