Unaccustomed to warm weather, Baguio City athletes fell short of 17 gold medals having an overall score of 205 gold, 110 silver and 79 bronze medals during the recently concluded Cordillera Administrative Region Athletic Association (CARAA) meet held at the Apayao Sports and Eco-Tourism Complex in Payanan, Luna, province of Apayao.
Baguio’s 205-110-79 overall finish in this year’s CARAA edition was lower compared to its 222-102-61 haul in 2018 per records of the Department of Education Cordillera.
While Baguio City maintained its dominance retaining the championship crown, the Baguio City DepEd Division underscored that the hot weather in Apayao may have affected the performance of the city athletes.
Aside from the hot weather, several athletes also suffered low bowel movement or diarrhoea according to DepEd Baguio Sports Development Coordinator Arthur Tiongan.
“The hot weather and LBM affected our athletes especially during the finals, most of our athletics and swimming contingents were already dehydrated due to diarrhea,” Tiongan explained.
“But we are thankful to the province of Apayao for immediately assisting our medical team from Baguio, we were able to address the health concern,” Tiongan added.
Despite the health concern, Tiongan said the Baguio athletes performed well particularly in the team games such as championing in the basketball and volleyball games which used to be dominated by the Benguet division.
Tiongan also noted the overall medal tally included exhibition games such as the dance sport and aero gymnastics which was dominated by the Apayao division; and the new sport Pencak Silat reigned by the Benguet division.
“To be fair, Apayao really prepared for CARAA, they even hired professional athletes and coaches to train their delegation,” Tiongan admitted.
For the overall medal tally, Apayao province ranked second with 69 gold, 76 silver and 79 bronze medals easing out Benguet who used to be the perennial second placer. Abra also improved its medal standing having 39-48-88 score followed by Benguet with Benguet 35-66-83; Ifugao has 27-48-70; and, Mountain Province hauled 16-25-44. Tabuk City had 12 golds, 29 silvers and 37 bronze medals separate from Kalinga province’s 6-6-20 medal finish.
The CARAA meet serves as a qualifier to the Palarong Pambansa where regional athletes will see action in Davao City come April 27 to May 4, 2019.
By Jessa Mardy Polonio-Samidan/PIO