Jessica R. Lucas: Outstanding netter-A A +A
Saturday, September 8, 2012
JESSICA Rabuya Lucas may not have been feted in the 18th So Kim Cheng Sports Awards Night in July but she deserves to be honored along with the rest of the outstanding athletes who were hailed.
University of Mindanao's unassuming Bachelor of Science in Business Administration financial management major Jez, however, didn't mind if she didn't get the nod of the awards screening committee.
Bukidnon native Jez, born to the late dentist Lito Lucas and Zenaida, a businesswoman, captured the women's singles gold medal and a team silver in the 2012 Private Schools Athletic Association (Prisaa) Collegiate Games in Cebu City last summer.
In the 2011 national Prisaa edition held in Zamboanga City, she swept the doubles and team golds following a two-silver output in the National Ched Games in Manila in 2010
The five-foot-five ace had indeed come a long way since she took hold of a tennis racket when she was eight.
"My father encouraged me to play tennis since he also plays the sport. He is my mentor," Jez said.
She first tested her mettle in an age-group tournament in Malaybalay City where she copped the runner-up honors in 10-under unisex.
She helped win a team gold in the Northern Mindanao Region Athletic Association (NMRAA) Meet in 2003 and a doubles silver in the 2005 Palarong Pambansa in Iloilo City.
Jez was named most valuable player (MVP) of the Milo Olympics held in Cagayan de Oro City in 2009.
She shared, "The Milo Olympics was my best experience. I'm very proud of what I have achieved there. I felt like I found my place. I love what I'm doing."
The youngest child in the brood of three also swept titles in local tournaments in Davao City.
She added that she may have excelled in her sport but academics remains her top priority. She has to keep good grades to also maintain her varsity scholarship.
She keeps herself fit through her daily jogging sessions every 5 a.m. She trains thrice a week with the rest of her teammates with or without a tournament to prepare for.
Just like any other athlete, this Maria Sharapova fan also dreams of making it into the national team and compete for the country in international competition.
She believes in the saying, "Life is often compared to a game that everyone is playing to win. Win some. Lose some. But never give up".
Jez will have another shot to defend her national Prisaa title next year. She hopes to win again for Davao City and for the Davao Region.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on September 09, 2012.