MBTF: Back-to-back victory, never a goose chance


“TSAMBA pa ba yon? — 87 gold, 67 silver and 55 bronze medals!”

This was the repartee of Mayor Belen T. Fernandez to bashers who belittled the second championship crown earned by Dagupan in the just concluded Region 1 Athletic Association (R1AA) meet in Laoag, Ilocos Norte.

“No, that’s not a goose chance. It was earned through hard work by our children and all of us Dagupeños should be proud of it,” said Mayor Fernandez.

“We started when the only citation we could hope to win was being “best in uniform.” Under our watch, we became first runner-up twice in 2016 and 2017 before finally winding up the overall champion last year and this year,” she said.

She asked: “Wasn’t that a feat or a record of sort?”

“If they really love their city and the children of their city, they should value the efforts that they exerted and the sweat and tears that had to shed just to win for the city the elusive gold,” Fernandez said curtly.

“The children are the real heroes in the R1AA meet. They gave all their might against the odds in their respective events not for their own personal glory but for the glory of the whole city,” said Finnela Sim, vice chair of the Dagupan City Sports Commission (DCSC).

Ang bida po talaga rito ay yong mga bata. Kami po sa city government at DCSC ay sumuporta lang sa kanila,” Sim said.

She said that during the competition, she was too happy to see the young boys and girls of the Balon Dagupan team giving their all in whatever event they were competing in.

Dagupan was champion in arnis even if the young fighters trained wherever place that was made available to them, in aerogymnastics as well as in boxing and swimming.

Sa arnis, bitin tayo sa venue. But hindi naman nasusukat yan sa venue,” Sim said, noting that the boys and girls trained in the rooftop of the building owned by the family of DCSC Commissioner Nestor Duque, and ended up the overall champion.

Dagupan has been R1AA’s champion in swimming for four years in a row since 2016.

In  boxing, the Dagupan boxing team formed by former City Councilor Liberato Reyna Jr. only in December last year won three gold medals to bag the championship.

Sim said Dagupan athletes also excelled in athletics. “Susan Maramba, who was used to running short distances but was asked to shift to long distances and won the gold.”  She also congratulated Karyl Perez for breaking the meet record in shot put.

Masaya ang mga bata, masaya ang buong Dagupan, Masaya si Mayor Belen,” Sim said. (Leonardo Micua)

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