The Philippine Swimming League (PSL) wrapped up its campaign on a high note as seven tankers bagged their respective Most Outstanding Swimmer awards in the 2018 Japan Age-Group Swimming Championship held at the St. Mary’s International School swimming pool in Tokyo, Japan.
Palarong Pambansa-bound and reigning Female Swimmer of the Year Micaela Jasmine Mojdeh of Immaculate Heart of Mary College-Paranaque led the list of awardees after dominating the girls’ 11-12 category.
Mojdeh stamped her class against tall and older foes, claiming five gold and one bronze medals in individual events highlighted by three new records.
The 11-year old Mojdeh erased the open record in 100m butterfly via a one-minute, 6.86-second showing as well as the area records in the 50m butterfly (30.65) and 100m Individual Medley (1:11.44).
She also got mints in 100m breaststroke (1:08.96) and 200m Individual medley (2:33.02), and bronze in 50m breaststroke.
“It was an amazing campaign. Our swimmers competed against taller and older rivals and we’re happy that they were able to perform well despite the odds. It only shows that our grassroots development program is working so well. This is the product of our hardwork and perseverance,” said PSL president Susan Papa.
Promising tanker Richelle Anne Callera was stole some spotlight as she swept all her six individual events to pocket the MOS award in the girls’ 8-under class.
Callera ruled the 25m butterfly, 50m butterfly, 25m freestyle, 50m freestyle, 25m backstroke and 50m backstroke events.
Aishel Cid Evangelista of West Manila Christian School (boys’ 8-under) and Coby Marcus Rivilla of Ormoc (boys’ 9-10) both earned five gold and one silver medals each to grab the MOS plum in their respective age groups.
Evangelista topped the 25m freestyle, 25m butterfly, 25m backstroke, 50m butterfly and 50m freestyle then wound up second in 50m backstroke while Rivilla took home the gold medals in 50m butterfly, 50m backstroke, 50m freestyle, 100m IM and 200m IM, and a silver in 100m freestyle.
Wisenheimer Academy standout Marc Bryan Dula likewise secured the MOS award in the boys’ 11-12 division, winning three silvers (50m butterfly, 100m butterfly and 100m backstroke) and a couple of bronzes (200m IM and 50m backstroke).
The other recipients of MOS awards were Triza Tabamo in girls’ 9-10 with three golds (100m butterfly, 50m butterfly and 100m freestyle) and three silvers (50m freestyle, 50m backstroke and 200m IM) and Kiara Acierto in girls’ 8-under with gold in 50m backstroke, silver in 25m butterfly and bronze in 25m backstroke.
Overall, the Philippines earned the runner-up trophy in the overall team championship race.
“Once again, we dedicate this successful campaign to our kababayan here in Japan. They helped us in this journey especially Myles Briones Beltran and Hiroshi Katsumata and all of the Filipino community who extended their support. Accept our heartfelt gratitude to all of you. Mabuhay po kayo,” added Papa.
PSL secretary general Maria Susan Benasa, coaches Alexandre Papa and Virgie De Luna, PSL operations manager Stephanie Sablan and regional director Joan Mojdeh accompanied the PSL chief in the tournament.