It’s girl power on the opening day of the 119th Philippine Swimming League (PSL) National Series as five young ladies led by Charize Juliana Esmero and Richelle Anne Callera broke records in their respective events on Saturday at the Rizal Memorial Swimming Pool in Malate, Manila.
Esmero, a University of the Philippines Integrated School standout, dominated the girls’ 14-year 50m backstroke in 33.65 seconds, eclipsing the three-year old 34-second mark of Carmen Rose Matabuena.
Callera also made her presence felt by registering 48.28 seconds in the girls’ 7-year 50m backstroke, erasing the 48.31 former mark of Nirel Marie Ibarra in 2010 in the tournament supported by The Manila Times.
Veteran international campaigners Micaela Jasmine Mojdeh and Kyla Soguilon as well as newcomer Ruth Denise Sula likewise shone in their respective pet events.
The reigning PSL Female Swimmer of the Year and a Immaculate Heart of Mary College-Paranaque tanker Mojdeh topped the girls’ 11-year 100m butterfly in 1:09.87, breaking her old mark of 1:10.81.
Soguilon checked in at 33.58 second in the girls’ 12-year 50m backstroke, better than the 35.22-second performance of Francesca Joves in 2013 while Ruth Denise Sula submitted 37.00 in the girls’ 8-year 50m backstroke – way below the 40.53 time of Aubrey Tom in 2015.
“It’s overwhelming to see these kids break records in their respective events. I’m happy to see them grow and we’re looking forward to see them in big international competitions in the future. We’re also thankful to the Philippine Sports Commission which is very supportive on the grassroots developmental program of PSL,” said PSL President Susan Papa.
On the other hand, Marc Bryan Dula of Wisenheimer Academy ruled the boys’ 10-year 50m backstroke (37.22), Lee Grant Cabral of Diliman Preparatory School copped the gold in the boys’ 11-year 50m backstroke (37.25) and Heather White of British School Manila reigned supreme in the girls’ 10-year 200m freestyle (2:41.47).
The other gold medalists were Gwangju Universiade veteran Jux Solita, Recz Agustin, Carmenrose Matabuena, Aishel Cid Evangelista, Master Charles Janda, Angela Torrico, Julianne Torres and John Paul Salibio.
Ilaya Escobal, Jeanne Calayag, Maria Del Valle, Ixidorre Cajucom, Allaine Bartilad, Ivhana Dimaligalig, Joseph Corpuz, Raindale Ching, Jordan Ken Lobbos, Sebastian Alcoran, Mervier Mirandilla, Gabriel Chua, Alister Corpuz, Sofia Ching, Sabrina Campana, Nathaniel Capua, Jasper Benigla, Leah Buenaventura, Sophia Tumanglay, Urielle Buna, Jasmine Omolon, Joaquin Aquino, Neil Salvador, Eldric Dela Cruz, Pierre Suyu, Ishi Maragay, Hugh Parto, Alex Marasigan, Claine Lim, Alexandra Pedracio, Jamesray Ajido, Czesk Valdez and Sam Villarin also won medals.