by Kristel Satumbaga
DAVAO City – National Capital Region capped its dominance in the 2019 Palarong Pambansa by retaining the secondary boys basketball crown on Saturday at the University of Southeastern Philippines gym here.
Represented by the National University Bullpups, the Metro Manila bets clobbered University of St. Augustine of Central Luzon, 103-79, to win the title for the third straight year.
Gerry Abadiano fired 17 points to help steer the Freego-backed squad to a Grand Slam in a feat that earned for himself the Most Valuable Player award.
The title win was the second for coach Goldwyn Monteverde.
Karl Tamayo chipped in 15 points while Terrence Fortea added 13 points.
NCR also reigned supreme in the secondary girls basketball, secondary boys volleyball and secondary girls volleyball.
NCR virtually clinched the overall championship after the week-long competition after scooping 86 gold, 71 silver and 56 bronze medals at presstime – 20 golds more than second-running Calabarzon with 66-49-73 gold-silver-bronze tally.
Western Visayas is at third with 49 golds, 40 silvers and 58 bronzes, followed by Soccsksargen with 26-43-40 and Central Visayas with 24-22-33.
NCR banked on its secondary athletes with 67 golds, 44 silvers and 34 bronzes while Calabarzon dominated the elementary division with 29 gold, 19 silver and 24 bronze medals.
Thirty-two meet records were reset this year with 18 in swimming, 10 in athletics and four in archery. NCR’s Xiandi Chua was responsible for five of those new swimming marks while Jason Feliciano of Ilocos Region crushed two records in archery.
Miguel Barreto became the most bemedalled athlete this year after the 15-year-old swept all his seven events in secondary boys swimming.
Meanwhile, Northern Mindanao showed its strength in boxing after collecting four of the nine gold medals at stake. Winners were Aaron Jude Bado (light flyweight), Sunrise Seronay (light bantam), Mark Lester Durens (light fly) and John Erl Palivino (fly).
Kiana Marie Alagaban also collected three golds for Western Visayas after winning the rop, individual all around and team events in secondary girls rhythmic gymnastics even as Rafael Siso Jr ruled in the anyo individual event single weapon, double weapon and espada y daga for Bicol Region in the arnis competition.