26th SEA Games: Taekwondo jins spark six-gold PH harvest
PALEMBANG, Indonesia—Taekwondo jins John Paul Lizardo and Kristie Elaine Alora pulled through to spark a six-gold haul for the Philippines Tuesday in the 26th Southeast Asian Games.
The other Filipino winners were bowler Frederick Ong, fencer Walbert Mendoza, wrestler Jayson Balabal and cue artist Iris Rañola.
A seasoned internationalist at 25, Lizardo prevailed over Thai Jerranat Nakaviro in the under 54 kg division while Alora made it a golden double when she downed Indonesian Eka Sahara in the women’s 73 kg class.
Lizardo, a commercial model who copped silvers in the 2006 and 2010 Asian Taekwondo Championships, improved on his silver medal finish in the Laos SEA Games.
Making his initial foray in Greco-Roman wrestling, Balabal, a 25-year-old Ifugao, pinned down his rival from Myanmar to take the 84 kg title. The freestyle specialist won his first two matches against a Laotian and a Thai.
Ong and Jeremy Posadas torched the lanes of the Jaya Ancol Bowling Center in Jakarta to finish 1-2 in the men’s singles competition.
The 29-year-old Ong, a member of the victorious Asian Bowling Championship squad, scored 223, 234, 252, 206, 239 and 239 for a six-game series of 1386 and a 231 average.
Posadas scored a 254 in his last frame to edge Malaysian Adrian Ang for the silver with a 1365 total and a 227.5 average.
“Our game plan was just to enjoy the game out there,” said Ong, 2010 Guangzhou Asian Games bronze medalist.
Mendoza won over Vietnamese Than An Am in the individual sabre final as the Filipinos raised their medal haul to 13 gold, 19 silver and 25 bronze medals, although they remained mired at sixth place overall.
Ranola took over from Rubilen Amit as women’s 8-ball champion by outclassing Indonesian Manda, 5-1, in the finals. She eliminated Manda’s compatriot Angelina Magdalena, 5-3, late Monday night.
As of 7:45 p.m. (Manila time), the Indonesians were lording it over the 11-nation field with a gold-silver-bronze harvest of 67-54-48.
Defending overall champion Thailand was second with 41-31-46, followed by Vietnam with 31-35-44. Singapore and Malaysia were locked in a tight battle for fourth with 20 golds each, the Singaporeans having the edge in silvers 20-19, on the busiest day of the Games with 65 golds at stake.
Alexander Briones settled for the 87 kg silver as the jins became the biggest medal producer for the Filipinos with four golds, three silvers and five bronzes.
Filipino-American netters Cecil Mamiit and Treat Huey, however, fell short in their bid for the team crown when they bowed to the Indonesians in the deciding doubles.
Seeing action in his last SEA Games, Mamiit rallied to beat Elbert Siy, 1-6, 6-3, 6-3.
Jeson Patrombon, however, got waylaid by Chris Pungrat, 6-1, 6-2, in the other singles.
In cycling, the time trial team of Mark Galedo, Ronald Gorantes and Lloyd Lucien Reynante settled for the bronze.
Pencak Silat also contributed two bronzes through Nerlyn Huinda in the 55 kg-60 kg class and Ronald Perena in the 70-75 class.
Over in West Java, the golfers stayed in contention in the men’s division but faltered in ladies play.
The Filipino cagers continued to assert their superiority with a 107-53 dumping of the Vietnamese in Jakarta.
London Olympics-bound Mark Anthony Barriga yielded to Indonesian Dennisi Hitarihun after a countback after both wound up tied at 14-14, and Delfin Boholstz lost to Apichet Sainchet of Thailand, 14-7, in a bad start for the Filipino boxers, who garnered five golds in Laos.
Barriga took the first round, 7-3, but fell prey to the Indonesian’s incessant attacks in the second and third rounds.
Mervin Guarte gave Filipino tracksters their seventh silver when he finished behind Vietnamese Duong Van Thai in the men’s 800m run. Guarte clocked 1:50.69 while Duong timed 1:49.42.
Henry Dagmil landed sixth in the men’s triple jump ruled by Thai Theerayut Philakan, Junrey Bano ended up fourth in the 400m hurdles (51.75), and Julius Sermona wound up sixth in the men’s 5,000 meters.
Late Monday night, the 4x400m relay team of Julius Nierras, Christian Bagsit, Edgardo Alejan and Junrey Bano bagged the silver while javelin thrower Danilo Fresnido settled for the bronze in the men’s javelin with a heave of 66.27m.
The other taekwondo medalists were Jose Antonio Soria, silver in the middleweight division, Leigh Ann Nuguid, bronze in the women’s finweight 46 kg division and Pauline Louise Lop, bronze in the flyweight division, over 46 kg but less than 49 kg.
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