THE UST Judokas dominated the UAAP judo tournament anew, taking home the men’s, women’s and boys’ division titles Sunday at the De La Salle Santiago Zobel Sports Pavilion in Alabang.
The Lady Judokas grabbed their fourth-straight title with 45 points, including a 4-4-5 gold-silver-bronze medal tally. University of the East placed second with 32 points.
Jamaika Ponciano (-78 kg) and Renielyn Castillo (+78 kg) bagged gold for UST for the day.
Khrishia Rotario (-70 kg) succumbed to UE’s Bianca Estrella to give UST its lone silver.
Team captain Lorelei Tolentino (-63 kg) and Bernadette Carpio (-70 kg) also scored bronze medals.
Almira Ruiz won the MVP award for the women’s division.
“Tama naman ang projection namin. Lahat ng prediction tama kasi alam namin ‘yung kapasidad ng kalaban namin. Magaling ang team natin at malakas. Alam kong kaya nila,” Lady Judokas coach Gerard Arce told the Varsitarian.
The Male Judokas shared the championship title with rival Ateneo de Manila University. They both finished with 30 points on a 3-2-3 tally.
This was the first time two teams shared a judo championship since its inception in 1995.
Season 79 MVP Daryl Mercado bested UST team captain Sherwin De Rosa (-60 kg) to give UST its lone gold and silver medals for the day.
Male Judokas Russel Lorenzo (-55 kg) and Jeunesse Ong (-73) notched two bronze medals.
The UAAP board has yet to decide on whom to give the MVP award due to the co-championship
“Ang daming pagkakataon dahil may mga bronze matches kahit one point lang sana makukuha na kaso ‘di natuloy. Pero okay pa rin ‘yung laro,” Male Judokas head coach Steve Esteban said.
Next season, the Lady Judokas will lose key players Lei Tolentino, Tracy Jean Honorio and Reinalyn Castillo while De Rosa, Mercado, Ong, Renzo Cazenas and Jolo Atienza will no longer see action for the Male Judokas after exhausting their playing years.
The UE juniors team squeaked past the UST girls’ team by one point to prevent UST from earning its back-to-back grand slam titles.