LINGAYEN, Pangasinan: Five young woodpushers from Pangasinan fared well in the 6th Governor Amado Espino Age Group Chess Championships, the first of a series of chess tournaments in the 2016 Pangasinan Chess Festival, held here on October 22 to 23.
John Ruiz Bravo of Lingayen, secured the championship in 14 and under category while Francis Noel Versoza of Malasiqui topped the 10 and under category.
National Master Giovanni Mejia of San Jacinto town fell short in winning the championship in the 20 and under category when he bowed to Quezon City’s Jeth Romy Morado in the finals.
Mark Noah Ventayen of Lingayen also prevailed as second best in the 8 and under event while San Fabian local player Christian Rilloraza landed third in 12 and under event.
Champions in other age group events include: Jhoeman Mendiogarin of LPU Manila in 18 and under (P5,000 cash prize); Jan Darryl Batula of Baguio City in 16 and under (P4,000 cash prize); Del Emerson Dela Cruz of Dasmarinas, Cavite in 12 and under (P3,000 cash prize); and Shaina Gai Bagorio of Nueva Vizcaya in 8 and under (P2,000 cash prize).
Awarding the cash prizes to the winners on behalf of Governor Amado I. Espino, III was Provincial Sports Consultant Modesto Operania, who bared during the closing ceremony at the Pangasinan Training and Development Center that the Pangasinan Chess Festival is a pioneering sports development program sustained by the provincial government that already produced a roster of local chess champions who are now making waves in national and international scenes.
“Our sports programs are aligned witn the youth development thrust of the province,” said Operania. He stressed that under the leadership of Governor Espino, more sports programs will be introduced.
Meanwhile, Pangasinan Chess League (PCL) president Don Sison expressed gratitude to the provincial administration for being supportive of the series of chess clinics and tournaments in Pangasinan, which he said, are honing the skills of local chess players.
Two more component tournaments of the Pangasinan Chess Festival 2016 have been set on November 19-20 (6th Pangasinan Chess Championship) and on December 16-18 (8th Gov. Amado Espino Cup –Open Chess Tournament.