The Philippine Swimming League (PSL) copped five gold, three silver and one bronze medals at the start of the 2017 Hong Kong Stingray Invitational Swimming Championship being held at the Hong Kong International School swimming pool in Tai Tam Campus, Red Hill.
Vaughn Andre Aquino dashed to victory in the boys’ 12-year category, snagging the country’s first three gold medals in the tournament that drew more than 600 tankers from different parts of the globe.
Aquino proved too much against his rivals in the 200m breaststroke when he checked in at two minutes and 55.84 seconds beating silver medalist Nicholas Cheung of Hong Kong (3:06.61) and bronze winner Lundy Zheng of China (3:10.05).
He also splashed his way to gold medals in 100m breaststroke via a 1:21.26 showing and in 200m Individual Medley in 2:40.06.
Palarong Pambansa champion and Philippine national junior record holder Jerard Dominic Jacinto of University of the East was also jubilant afte he took the gold medal in the boys’ 16-year 100m backstroke against older foes.
The 16-year-old Jacinto submitted 58.81 seconds to ouclass Robi Mangilinan of San Beda College (59.49) and Nicholas Koh of Hong Kong (1:00.34) – both 18-year-old tankers – who settled for silver and bronze, respectively.
Hannah Rafflyn Sales chipped in one gold by topping the girls’ 9-year 50m butterfly where she registered 37.62 seconds in beating Eden Yi Zhen Lim (38.66) and Francesca Barreto (39.28).
Sales added two silver medals in 100m IM (1:26.66) and 50m backstroke (40.27) as well as Aquino who placed second in the 100m freestyle (1:04.12) while Arbeen Miguel Thruelen got a bronze in the boys’ 12-year 100m backstroke (1:16.13).
“It’s a good start but we’re optimistic that we’ll win more gold medals in the next events especially Jacinto in his other backstroke events. The field is really though with the presence of powerhouse teams from different parts of the region,” said PSL President Susan Papa.