MANILA, Philippines - University of San Carlos-Basic Education Department showed top form in both the elementary and secondary divisions to dominate the 26th Milo Little Olympics Visayas leg at the Cebu City Sports Center in Cebu recently.
USC assembled 245.25 points to rule the elementary division and pooled 227 points to beat the field in the secondary category of the nationwide interschool league which drew over 6,000 student-athletes from 280 schools throughout the Visayas region.
They clashed in 11 Olympic sports, including athletics, badminton, basketball, chess, football, gymnastics, lawn tennis, swimming, table tennis, taekwondo and volleyball, and two non-Olympic sports namely sipa or sepak takraw and scrabble.
The Junior Warriors will spearhead Team Visayas’ bid to regain the crown in the national finals ruled by powerhouse National Capital Region in Marikina City last year.
Milo Little Olympics Visayas organizer Ricky Ballesteros said they are hopeful of the former three-peat national overall champions’ chances in the finals which they will host in October.
“I am optimistic that we will win the overall title this year. Not only are we driven by strong and determined teams, but we also have the homecourt advantage and the invaluable support of Team Bisdak,” said Ballesteros.
The USC Juniors stamped their class in badminton, scrabble and lawn tennis and highlighted their domination of athletics by sweeping both the elementary boys and girls titles behind Mary Joy Loberanes. Loberanes led the team with five gold medals in the 400-meter, 800-m run, 1,500-m run and anchored her team in the 4x100-m and 4x400-m relays.
University of the Visayas-Main placed second in the elementary division with 62.5 points, followed by Sacred Heart School-Ateneo de Cebu which scored 55 points. Catmon Integrated School ended up fourth with 40 points followed by Subangdaku Elementary School (40), Labangon Elementary School (30), University of San Jose Recoletos (30), Severo Duterte Memorial Elementary School (30), Don Bosco Technology Center (29) and Talisay South Elementary School-Negros Occidental (27.5) in that order.
USC’s romp in the secondary division also ended the 17-year reign of the University of Cebu, which topped taekwondo, swimming and table tennis. The long-time secondary titlists settled for second with 175.75 points.
Abellana National High School came in third with 78.25 followed by University of the Visayas-Main (65), Iloilo National High School (57), Sacred Heart School-Ateneo de Cebu (53.25), Southwestern University (36.75), PAREF-Springdale (35), St. John’s Institute-Bacolod (30.25) and Beatriz Durano Memorial NHS-Danao (28).
“Milo’s collaboration with the local government and the Department of Education contributes significantly to the growing awareness of sports in provincial areas. We are working very closely with both parties to further a common effort to inspire student-athletes to strive for excellence in sports and in life,” said Milo sports executive Robbie de Vera.