Jewels shine in FINIS Visayas leg series with 7-gold medal haul

Jewels shine in FINIS Visayas leg series with 7-gold medal haul

MANILA — Julia Jewels Poblete lived up to her name as she emerged as the most “precious” swimmer in the Visayas leg as she sparkled with a rare seven-gold medal haul, more than enough to lead her Iloilo Megakraken Swim Team for the overall team title in the recently concluded FINIS National Long Course Championship at the Iloilo Sports Complex Swimming pool in La Paz, Iloilo City over the weekend.

The eight-year-old tanker swept her seven-event in girls 7-8 class with stunning feats in the 200m Individual Medley (4:01.73), 100m butterfly (2:01.81), 50m backstroke (50.96), 50m fly (55.36), 100m back (1:50.36), 50m breaststroke (58.57), and 100m freestyle (1:37.34) helping her team to claim the overall team title for a total 1,432.5 points,

“We’re very proud not just of our medalists but of all swimmers and their coaches for their enormous effort just to be able to join the competition. I wanted to say kudos, particularly to the three-man Binirayan Tadpoles Swim Club (Princess Maria Galindo, Johnny Quimpang, and coach Patricia Anne Galindo). The recent typhoon “Paeng” washed away the bridge in Antique and it was very hard for their whole swim team to get across,” said FINIS Managing Director Vince Garcia.

“So majority of their teammates gave up and just chose not to join the swim meet anymore. But this trio made a headstrong decision to still participate. They had to use a zip line to cross the water to get to the others side just so they can compete in swimming this weekend. Hearts made this way are surely bound to be champions. We are so glad to have you at our swim meet. Thank you for gracing our swim event,” added Garcia.

Garcia said he is hoping and praying to get the same energy and excitement from young swimmers in Mindanao as the series shift with the holding of the Mindanao leg on November 12-13 at the Joaquin F. Enriquez Memorial Sports Complex Swimming Pool in Zamboanga City.

The series culminated with the Luzon Leg on November 26-27 at the New Clark City Aquatic Center in Capas, Tarlac. Top swimmers after the series will clash in a swim-off for the coveted National Championship on December 17-18 also in Clark.

“Just like our previous short course meets, nag-start din kami ng Long Course Record Holders. Lahat ng gold medalists ‘yun na ang start of the record holders for Visayas. We will do the same for Mindanao and Luzon. And finally, Finis Long Course National Records after the finals,” said Garcia, an active triathlete and ‘Godfather’ to TODO Para Triathletes team.

The JBLFMU Dolphin Swim Team finished 1st runner-up in the overall team standings with 837.5 points followed by Iloilo Tiger Shark Swim Team (612 4), Iloilo Sea Warriors Swim Club (534), Aklan Swimming Club (367 6), Capiz Eaglerays Swimming Club (341), Capiz Turbo Sharks Swim Club (333 8), Sta FE Crocs (150), Buddy Swim Team (135) and Pirates Swim Club (110).

JM Matthew Bata shared the limelight as he claimed two gold medals for Megakraken, topping the boys 11-12 class 50m freestyle (31.32) and 50m back (36.84), while his older sister Jilian Celestine Bata won in the girls 13-14 class 60m back (36.59). Other Megakraken gold winners are Lofiel Angelie Posadas (girls 9-10, 200m IM, 3:23.72), Eleison Ian Belicena (boys 9-10 100m fly, 1:38.76, Chein Aaleyah Diaz (girls 6 & Under 100m fly, 3:35.14) and Kaelan Garzon (boys 17-18 100m fly, 1:00.18)

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