Lingayen, Pangasinan – A new sports superstar from Pangasinan has emerged.
Bolinao lass Lany Cardona led her team, the Centrex-Virgen Milagrosa University Foundation (C-VMUF), to capture the overall team championship for the Juniors Division by winning four gold and one silver medals after the competition in the 800 meter-run, 5000mr, 3000 mr, 10000mr and 1500mr in the National Open Athletics Championship held last May 10 to 12 at the sprawling Narciso Ramos Sports and Civic Center here.
The C-VMUF was one of the two Pangasinan teams joining the national open track and field competition which had the participation of athletes from various countries.
Cardona’s team racked up a total of 181 points as against their closest rivals, the Far Eastern University with 105 total points and University of Baguio with 91 points.
Cardona said that she failed to snatch her fifth gold in her final race for the 1500 meter-run due to excruciating abdominal pain that relegated her to a silver medal finish.
Observers said that Cardona is a force to reckon with in the international sports arena considering her speed and stamina she demonstrated during the PATAFA events.
Gov. Espino and Dagupan City Mayor Alipio Fernandez, who congratulated the Pangasinan athletes, vowed to help the Philippine Sports Commission to develop local athletes for international competitions.
Meanwhile, athletes, coaches and PATAFA reporters were one in saying that the NRSCC offers world class facilities needed to develop globally competitive athletes.
The Provincial Government of Pangasinan and the City Government of Dagupan co-hosted the three-day national open sportsfest, one of the pre-qualifying events for the forthcoming South East Asean Games in Laos.
Other Pangasinan athletes who brought home medals were: Blessie Mae Sanchez, 400md girls division-gold; Maricris Carolino, 400md girls division-silver; Junelle Gallebo 400md boys division-gold; Jonathan Leyga, 400 md boys division-bronze; Rochille Corpuz, triple jump women division-silver; triple jump girls division-bronze and Sarah Jane Pascua, shotput girls division-bronze.
The 10,000 meter walk was likewise dominated by the Centrex-VMUF athletes Vanesa Membrado for the girls division and Mark Anthony Niro for the boys division. Both athletes clocked 1:03:54.3.25 and 59:27.4.31 respectively.
The Pangasinan team reaped a total of 8 golds, 4 silvers and 3 bronze in the three-day competition.
The Far Eastern University captured the championship title in the senior’s division with 181 points followed by the University of Baguio with 102 points and the Phil. Army occupying the third slot with 81 points. (PIO/Ruby R. Bernardino)