Twenty two para-athletes from Baguio City bagged 22 gold, three silver and nine bronze medals from the various sports during the 7th National Para Games held at the Bulacan Sports Complex in Malolos, Bulacan from May 23 to 30, 2019.
Agustina Bantiloc led the medal haul with three gold medals in archery and three silvers in athletics together with Allan Campos having three gold and two bronze medals in archery and athletic events.
Para-athletes Elizabeth Bayla and Giovanni Ola likewise pitched in three gold medals, respectively in the archery events while Victoria Elio and Jaime Manginga hauled three gold medals, respectively in the athletics event. Manginga also won a bronze medal in bowling.
In the powerlifting events, Kitan Agustin won a gold medal in the 140kg category while Romeo Tanawa landed a gold medal in the 120kg category followed by Daniel Padilan garnering a bronze medal in the 49kg division.
Other medalists include Carlos Gamboc, Jr. who bagged a gold medal in badminton double and a bronze in singles division; Judy Ann Addongan who garnered a gold medal in swimming; William Cablog and Estella Florendo won a bronze medal, respectively in archery; and, Jackson Limayog won a bronze medal in the 1500M dash athletics.
Persons with Disabilities PWD Affairs Officer (PDAO) Samuel Aquino said the para-athletes formed part of the Philippine Sports Association for Differently-abled (Philspada)-Baguio City Chapter with a minimal support from the city government in the amount of Php200,000.00 for the uniforms, transportation and meal allowance of the athletes.
While final and official medal result for the participating chapters is yet to be released by the Philspada and the Philippine Sports Commission, Aquino said Baguio tentatively ranks 5th with Pasig City, Pangasinan, Davao and Iligan on the first to fourth ranks, respectively out of 78 local government contingents.
Aquino noted that the medal haul will serve as an encouragement for the Baguio para-athletes to hone their skills as they look forward to the future competitions. Most of the Baguio athletes have orthopaedic disability, intellectual disability, deaf and hearing impaired, visually impaired while one athlete has cerebral palsy with ages ranging from 13 to 62 years of age.
“Our aim is to develop the skills of our PWD athletes until they become professionals of their own fields and serve as sport coaches someday since as early as now, they look as sports a sort of livelihood,” Aquino said.
By Jessa Mardy P. Samidan