PH juggernaut rolls on

Diaz bags first SEAG gold; 7 other events boost medal count

With Olympic silver medalist Hidilyn Diaz leading the charge, the Philippine juggernaut continued on Day 2 of the 30th Southeast Asian Games, fueled by victories in arnis, weightlifting, cycling, duathlon, triathlon, pencak silat, lawn balls, and 3x3 basketball.

PH juggernaut rolls on
CLASS OF GOLD. Hidilyn Diaz stamps her class early in the snatch category of the 30th Southeast Asian Games where she lifted 91 kgs before pulling off 120 kgs in the clean and jerk for a total 211 kgs to claim her first SEAG gold since 2007. Lino Santos
Diaz emerged as the star of the show for Team Philippines when she finally bagged her first Southeast Asian Games gold with a dominant performance in women’s weightlifting.

The 28-year-old Diaz lifted a total of 211 kgs in topping the women’s 55-kg division before an appreciative crowd at the newly renovated Rizal Memorial Coliseum.

Diaz added her breakthrough SEA Games gold to her glowing collection of medals that also include a gold in the Asian Games and a bronze in the world championship.

“I’m proud about winning a gold in an international competition here in the Philippines, but I was nervous because I didn’t know how to handle the pressure from the crowd,” she said in Filipino. “But I am thankful that because of their support, I was able to do this right. They pushed me to do well, so I hope they continue to support us.”

After winning 16 as of 8 p.m., Team Philippines improved its two-day gold-silver-bronze medal tally to 38-20-13 (71 total) to pull away from closest pursuers Vietnam (15-20-16) and Malaysia (10-2-7).

Arnis also shared the limelight as it scooped seven more gold medals to keep the Filipinos on top of the medal tally.

Led by Elmer Manlapaz, the Filipino arnis warriors dominated the men’s padded stick by winning three of the gold medals at stake, while four others in the distaff side topped their respective events on the second day of action at the Angeles University Foundation.

PH juggernaut rolls on
CLASS OF GOLD. Awarding ceremony at the World Trade Center in Pasay City in the Wushu Taolo Men’s Taijijian, with Malaysia’s Choon How Loh (gold, center), the Philippines’ Daniel Latawan Paratac (silver, left), and  Brunei’s Hosea Wong Zheng Yu (right, bronze). Lino Santos 
Manlapaz ruled the featherweight class, Jesfer Huquire was tops in bantamweight, and Carloyd Tejada won in the welterweight category.

Sheena Del Monte prevailed in the women’s bantamweight padded stick, Jedah Mae Soriano took the women’s featherweight padded stick, Abegail Abad secured the gold in the welterweight padded stick and Rosh Ashley Monville took the title in the lightweight finals.

The surge sustained arnis’ first-day romp, which saw the country’s national sport winning a total of seven out of eight gold medals at stake for the day. In all, the arnis warriors had won a total of 12 gold medals, eclipsing the 10 of the dancesport athletes on Sunday.

Cyclists John Derick Farr and Lea Denise Belgira scored a twin-kill in the mountain bike downhill that set the tone earlier for another gold rush for the Filipinos.

Triathlon contributed its third gold medal as Kim Mangrobang and Claire Adorna teamed up with Fernando Casares and John Chicano to rule the mixed team relay at the Subic Bay boardwalk. It was the second gold for both Mangrobang and Chicano, who ruled the men and women’s triathlon, respectively, on Sunday.

The Philippines also captured the first gold medal in lawn bowls competition after ruling the men’s pairs at the Friendship Gate in Clark, Pampanga.

Rodel Labayo and Angelo Morales turned back the pair of Woramet Singkeaw and Uthen Ontong of Thailand, 19-11, to add to the gold medal tally of the Philippines.

Singkaew and Ontong settled for the silver, while Rais Muhammad Abdul and Rusli Muhammad Soufi of Malaysia took the bronze medal after beating Amli Muhammad Arrif and Omar Abd Rahman, 22-9 of Brunei.

Malaysian lawn bowlers took the gold medal in the men’s triple after posting a 14-8 win over the troika of Elmer Abatayo, Homer Mercado and Christopher Dagpin of the Philippines.

Singapore placed third after Leong Khim Hoong, Melvin Kwang Yong Tan and Noui Ming Fook Matthew trounced Pollangeon Saman, Pongsiri Kunanon and Manakitpaiboon, 23-14 Sonthi of Thailand.

Asian elite champion Monica Torres kicked off another productive day for the hosts as she sustained her energy despite an upset stomach to clinch the women’s duathlon gold early Monday at the Subic Bay Boardwalk.

Torres ruled the 10km run-40km bike-5km run after finishing in two hours, eight minutes and 44 seconds.

“I expected to be strong on the bike, but honestly, I threw up all my nutrition and gels,” she said in Filipino.

She added that she wasn’t pressured by the victories of her compatriots, John Chicano and Kim Mangrobang in triathlon.

‘‘I didn’t feel any pressure after our triathletes won yesterday. We already expected them to win because they’re really strong in their events. More or less, we know each other, even those who join the tournaments within the region, except for a few surprise entries. But we’re always ready for them. We also expect that some of them will have podium finishes in both the triathlon and duathlon,’’ said Torres.

The 3-time Powerman Asia Duathlon Champion was followed by Pareeya Sonsem of Thailand, who clocked 2:11:18, while Thi Phuong Trinh Nguyen of Vietnam delivered the first duathlon medal for her country by pocketing the bronze medal in 2:14:20.

Earlier, a disappointed Joey Delos Reyes finished second with a time of 1:53:05 for the silver medal in the men’s side.

“Of course, I’m disappointed because we’re at home, so I really tried for the gold, but at least we got the silver,” he said.

Jauhari Johan gave Indonesia its second gold after ruling the grueling 10km run-40km bike-5km run in one hour, 52 minutes, and 51 seconds.

Thailand’s Nattawut Srinate settled for a bronze medal with a 1:53:05 timing.

The run-bike-run event is returning to the SEA Games for the first time since the 2007 edition in Nakhon Ratchasima.

Pencak Silat delivered its maiden gold for the Philippines in the games through Edmar Tacuel, who topped the men’s seni tunggal event at the Subic Bay Exhibition and Convention Center.

The 20-year-old from Tubongan, Iloilo impressed the judges in his games’ debut and scored 470 points, edging Muhammad Iqbal Bin Abdul Rahman of Singapore who bagged the bronze with 461 points and Dino Bima Sulistianto of Indonesia who settled for the bronze with 460 points.

Tacuel, the sixth of the seven children of a farmer and a housekeeper, couldn’t contain his emotions after adding to the Philippines’ golden run.

“I’m happy that I won a gold medal,” he said. “I want to thank all the coaches, my teammates, my province-mates, the whole Philippines, many thanks.”

Tacuel said his knowledge of arnis, his first sport since 2012, helped him in his transition to pencak silat. He became a member of the national team last April and trained rigorously in Singapore and Thailand.

In 3x3 basketball, the Philippines lived up to its top billing by taking the gold medal following a 21-9 shellacking of Indonesia, with CJ Perez leading the cagers’ assault with 10 points at the FilOil-Flying Sports Center in San Juan.

Afril Bernardino also unloaded 10 points in the Philippine women’s squad’s 17-13 beating of Thailand for the women’s division gold earlier.

Team Pilipinas, getting instructions from coach Ronnie Magsanoc, finished with an eight-winning run in stopping the Indonesia’s outside shooting.

“Indonesia had a lot of sharpshooters. We just wanted to protect the two-point line and make them earn their points,” the team skipper, Chris Newsome, said.

Newsome’s crew reached the finals following a six-game sweep of the elimination round, and after crushing Cambodia, 21-6. They advanced to the finals following a 21-9 triumph over Thailand.

The Filipinas bounced back from a 20-22 loss to the Thais in the women’s elims, as they ended the group stage with a 4-1 slate.

They went on topple Vietnam, 21-12, in the semis and arranged a finals clash with the Thais.

Meanwhile, Canoe kayak’s competition manager on Monday decided to reschedule the games originally scheduled Wednesday to Dec. 6-8 due to typhoon “Tisoy.”

Bonnel Perez, one of the managers in charge for canoe kayak and traditional boat race, said the games were moved after the state weather bureau raised typhoon signal number one in most of the Luzon area.

PH juggernaut rolls on
CLASS OF GOLD. A Philpost office worker shows off the new SEA Games designed stamps and souvenir sheets sold for P96 and P314 for a set with envelope. Norman Cruz 
Meanwhile, Len Escollante, one of the coaches of the Philippine Canoe Kayak and Dragon Boat Federation (PCKDF), expressed confidence that their athletes would win at least five of the 12 gold medals at stake in their events.

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Topics: Hidilyn Diaz , 30th Southeast Asian Games , Elmer Manlapaz , Carloyd Tejada
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