BALON DAGUPAN NEWS
THE athletes here are bringing more pride to the city in ways more than just winning medals.
For the past years, the achievements set by the city’s athletes ended the decades-long medal drought in the Region 1 Athletic Association (R1AA) meet and cemented its sports dominance as back-to-back champions in 2018 and 2019.
The herculean feat was successfully achieved through the joint efforts between the city government and the athletes.
Through Mayor Belen T. Fernandez’s initiatives, the athletes were able to hone their skills with unyielding determination to excel through the city’s sports programs.
These included the annual summer sports clinic, free swimming lessons and the regular trainings conducted under the city’s Building the Future: Developing Our Excellence in Sports (BTF: DOES IT) program.
Today, the accomplished athletes who had their humble beginnings are working to train new athletes that joined the programs.
John Enrico Vasquez, one of the city’s bemedaled athletes winning medals in both national and international competitions, has taken it upon himself to train other aspiring athletes in the city in karate.
His efforts paid off and produced more competitive athletes from West Central Elementary School (WCES) 1 and hauled medals in their events at the recent Batang Pinoy Luzon qualifiers last March.
Under his guidance, the city’s Karatedo team hauled four gold, two silver and four bronze medals in the competition.
Vasquez is joined by other star athletes and fellow Karate Philippine Team members Jayson Ram Macaalay, Mark Andrew Manantan and Matthew Manantan in training younger athletes.
Arriane Brito, Abigail Brito and Rheila Angel Duva, medal haulers during the first Karate Pilipinas National Championships, have joined fellow Wado Ryu members Rita Alexis Cuadra (Bacolod City), Khyssa Paltep (Bolinao) and Joana Paulen Singsing (Bolinao) in providing free karate training to young girls in the city.
The free Karatedo training offered by the young athletes are offered during the annual summer sports clinic being regularly conducted by the Dagupan City Sports Commission (DCSC). (Verdelle De Vera/CIO)
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