The continuing search for a new generation of swimming heroes unfolds today with the start of the PSI National Age Group Swimming Championships with more than 400 young swimmers from all over the country plunging into action at the Rizal Memorial pool.
Among those spearheading the quest are 2017 Palarong Pambansa standouts Maurice Sacho Ilustre, Chloe Pamintuan, Rafael Barreto and Kyla Soguilon in the three-day meet organized by Philippine Swimming Inc., the official local swimming, body recognized by both the Asian Swimming Federation and the International Swimming Federation.
Ilustre and Pamintuan were the Most Valuable Players in the boys and girls high school divisions while Soguilon of Aklan was tops in the girls elementary division of the Palaro edition held last year in San Jose, Antique.
On the other hand, Barreto, who won a gold medal in the 41st Southeast Asian Age Group swimfest last December in Brunei, will be flying in from the US after undergoing training with King Aquatic Club coach Doug Djang, a former Seattle University swimming varsity standout.
“The PSI National Age Group championships will showcase many of our rising stars in local swimming and is an opportunity for our young swimmers to test their mettle among the best of the best,” noted newly elected PSI president Lani Velasco.
A member of the ASF executive bureau, Velasco said she was encouraged by the response of the swimming clubs to the event from as far as Mindanao, Visayas, Palawan as well as Luzon in the age group swimfest also supported by the Philippine Sports Commission.
“The Puerto Princesa Hammerhead Sharks and Palawan Swimming Clubs are fielding entries to the event,” she bared. “PSC’s Pearl Daganio Maglia Dignadice of the Hammerheads will lead their respective teams.” (MB)