UM’s Kate McDowell secures gold medal in 3K steeplechase in PH Athletics 2024

DAVAO PRIDE. Kate Duffy Gel McDowell of the University of Mindanao (UM)-Davao City, center,  clinches the gold medal in the women's under-20 3,000-meter steeplechase event of the International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) Philippine Athletics Championships 2024 at the Philsports track and field stadium in Pasig City on Thursday evening, May 10.
DAVAO PRIDE. Kate Duffy Gel McDowell of the University of Mindanao (UM)-Davao City, center, clinches the gold medal in the women's under-20 3,000-meter steeplechase event of the International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) Philippine Athletics Championships 2024 at the Philsports track and field stadium in Pasig City on Thursday evening, May 10. ICTSI PHILIPPINE ATHLETICS CHAMPIONSHIPS 2024 PHOTO

University of Mindanao (UM)-Davao City's varsity scholar Kate Duffy Gel McDowell, the daughter of a tricycle driver in Davao City, clinched the women’s under-20 3,000-meter steeplechase gold medal in The International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) Philippine Athletics Championships 2024 at the Philsports track and field stadium in Pasig City on Thursday evening, May 10.

A newcomer to the national open, McDowell, a 19-year-old Criminology freshman, checked in at 12 minutes and 15.21 seconds (12:15.21), outpacing Ana Marie Eugenio of T.A.F.T. and Angel Mae Saysay of the University of Baguio (UB), who secured silver and bronze, respectively. Eugenio clocked at 12:26.22 while Saysay finished at 12:39.84.

The Toril-based runner was surprised by her achievement.

Wala gyud ko mag-expect nga mudaug kay ang akong kontra bag-o ra nagdula sa Dubai unya nag-fourth sya. Second pa nako ning dula sa steeplechase, wala pa gyud nako ni gipraktisan
Kate Duffy Gel McDowell, ICTSI Philippine Athletics Championships 2024 3K steeplechase gold medalist

(I really didn't expect to win because my competitor just played in Dubai and finished fourth. This is only my second time doing steeplechase, and I haven't even practiced it)," she told SunStar Davao in a phone interview.

McDowell and Eugenio were neck and neck until the final lap, where the Dabawenya surged ahead in the last 200 meters.

"Naka-gold ko for the first time. Nalipay kaayo ko, wala ko'y pracice og jump, nakaluy-an gihapon ko ni God (This is my first gold. I'm so happy. Despite not practicing jumps, God still blessed me)," she added, thanking UM president Guillermo "Willie" Torres Jr. of his support and her coaches Ernesto Alsa and Harrish Ratag for training her.

McDowell, the second among three children of Allan and Hazel, first took up running at Doña Carmen Denia National High School intramurals during seventh grade and began competing locally and regionally in eighth grade under coach Valerio Bulpa and trainer Ramil "Nanay" Torregosa Valerio Bulpa, after a brief stint in rugby football during sixth grade at Don Juan Elementary School.

She aims to secure more medals for UM as she competes in the 3,000-meter run on Saturday, May 11, and the 1,500m on Sunday, May 12.

Lyka Catubig of UM-Davao City clinches a silver medal in 10,000m event in the International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) Philippine Athletics Championships 2024 at the Philsports track and field stadium in Pasig City on Thursday evening, May 10.
Lyka Catubig of UM-Davao City clinches a silver medal in 10,000m event in the International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) Philippine Athletics Championships 2024 at the Philsports track and field stadium in Pasig City on Thursday evening, May 10.KATE MCDOWELL

Lyka Catubig, her teammate, contributed a silver medal for UM by finishing second in the women's open 10,000m event. The Philippine National Games (PNG) triple gold medalist clocked 1:00:46.71, coming in behind champion Juliana Talaro of Pasig City (59:24.13). University of the East's Jenelyn Relox (1:02:18.64) secured the bronze medal.

The bronze medal quartet of the University of Mindanao (UM) - Davao City who placed third in the mixed men and women 4X400m mixed relay event of the The International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) Philippine Athletics Championships 2024 at the Philsports track and field stadium in Pasig City on Thursday evening, May 10.
The bronze medal quartet of the University of Mindanao (UM) - Davao City who placed third in the mixed men and women 4X400m mixed relay event of the The International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) Philippine Athletics Championships 2024 at the Philsports track and field stadium in Pasig City on Thursday evening, May 10.CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

In mixed men and women 4X400m mixed relay, UM Davao City's Johnny Gil Meder, Angeline Reponte, Adrean Cabacang, and Andrea Annabela De Guia salvaged the bronze medal, trailing behind champion City of Pasig and runner-up Guang Ming College of Tagaytay. MLSA

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