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Thursday, February 13, 2014
IT’S BEEN 22 years and Cebu City is showing no signs of wavering as it once more dominated the Central Visayas Regional Athletic Association, the sporting meet that will select the region’s representatives to the Palarong Pambansa this summer.
With the competition in the region wrapping up yesterday at the Cebu Coliseum, the divisions now put on a united front in its bid in the Palarong Pambansa as the team hopes to at least maintain its third-place finish in the national meet.
Cebu City once more stamped its class in both the elementary and secondary divisions with a total of 891.25 points. Cebu Province came in at a distant second with 522.75, while Mandaue City came in third with 339.25.
Cebu City lorded it over in the secondary division, winning 25 of the 30 events, including the medal-rich athletics and swimming competitions. The elementary division topped 16 of the 26 events.
For the first time, however, Cebu City failed to win the basketball competition as the secondary division title went to Mandaue City, represented by Sacred Heart School-Jesuit Ateneo de Cebu and the elementary title going to Cebu Province made up of selection of players.
Regional Pess chief Vivian Ginete said that while she is confident Central Visayas will have a strong lineup for this May’s Palarong Pambansa, she is having second thoughts on the region’s chances should the officials decide to revert to the medal tally instead of the points system being used now.
In their recent meeting with DepEd, Ginete said that it was decided to use the Olympic medal system.
With the point system, even if the player did not make the podium and finished fourth to sixth, the team will still earn points.
“The points would make a lot of difference. An example would be, if you look at the medals won by Mandaue they have more compared to Cebu Province except that Cebu Province had more athletes placing from fourth to sixth,” said Ginete.
Region 7 had worked for years to finally get out of being fourth placers by focusing more on the team competitions like basketball, baseball and other team events, which stakes more points than the individual events. If the medal system will take effect, instead of earning 25 points for a football victory, a team will only get one medal.
“Maalkansi na ta especially in the individual events like swimming because every medal is counted,” said Ginete.
Ginete said she is crossing her fingers that at least, should they go back to medal system, that it would be applied next year yet to give them more time to change their strategy.
The officials and coaches also completed the selection of athletes yesterday. Although not yet set in stone as it still might make changes, officials hope that the winning coaches, who make the decision will think about the good of the entire delegation.
“There are those who will only think about bringing their entire team when there are players from the losing team who could contribute to the bid. I hope the coaches will not be selfish,” said Cebu City Pess Coordinator Zenaida Gocotano.
Meanwhile, Ginete also said that while Cebu is expected to dominate, it made her happy seeing all the athletes in top shape despite the calamities that hit the region at the end of 2013.
The Cviraa was in fact moved twice to give chance to divisions that were heavily hit by the 7.1 magnitude quake and super typhoon Yolanda a chance to regroup.
“I have seen how the athletes performed and it makes me proud. The fact that they worked hard and prepared for the Cviraa after the devastation is really a good sign.
In fact Bohol placed fourth and that is really good. Nigawas gyud ang dugo ni Dagohoy,” said Ginete.
Despite the event finishing without much of a hitch, it ended with 11 players and a coach from Lapu-Lapu City confined to the hospital.
“We all suffered from vomiting and LBM. The doctors in our division gave us medicines but we were still having episodes so we decided to get ourselves admitted,” said gymnastics coach Grace Ann Baguio.
She and 11 other gymnastics athletes were confined at the Mactan Doctors’ hospital and were made to stay as some were still suffering.
“I do not know if there are others who were confined but the gymnastics team just decided to seek medical help just to be sure,” said Baguio.
Baguio added that she suspects the food they had at their billeting area was the reason for the food poisoning.
“We had rice, chorizo and egg with hipon for breakfast. That was the last meal we had together and we all vomitted and had LBM moments after,” said Baguio.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on February 14, 2014.