FIL-AMS,  OLYMPIANS  HEAD  RP  SWIM  ASPIRANTS AT  SEAG

MANILA, October 20, 2005 
(STAR) By Joey Villar - A Fil-American who broke three womenís RP records and United States-based former Olympians lead the final cast of swimmers selected by the Philippine Amateur Swimming Association to compete in the 23rd Southeast Asian Games set Nov. 27-Dec. 5 at the TRACE Center in Los BaŮos, Laguna.

The list, composed of 17 men and 11 women, is headed by Fil-American Erica Totten and Olympians Miguel Molina, Miguel Mendoza, Jackie Pangilinan and JB Walsh.

Two other Fil-Am recruits in the list are Robert Walsh and Mikhail Reyes.

Totten, 17, appears to be a prized find after she recently shattered three RP records, including the long-standing 200-meter freestyle mark of 2 minutes and 7.95 seconds Akiko Thompson registered less than two decades back by more than a second (2:06.89) in the Lumino Nationals in Florida.

She also broke Joy Ongís 100-m butterfly record of 1:05.01 by clocking 1:04.41 and Althea Limís 400-m Individual Medley mark of 5:07.47 with a 5:07.26.

"Sheís the first to ever break the record of Akiko (Thompson) in decades," said an impressed PASA president Mark Joseph, referring to the teenage tanker who studied at the prestigious Bolles School in Florida.

Jeff Poppel, the same coach who trained 2003 Hanoi SEAG 1500-m freestyle gold medallist Miguel Mendoza, coaches Totten, whose mother is a Filipino.

Walsh and Reyes, on the other hand, came from the MAC Swim Team in Virginia and Irvine Novo Aquatics in California, respectively.

Also making the list were Timmy Chua, Kendrick Uy, Lambert Guiriba, Evan Grabador, Bonus Bordado, Ryan Arabejo, Benjamin Uy, Ernes Dee, Jan Michael Chiu, Mark Tano, Ferdinand Frigillana, Liza and Michaelmars Danila, Luica Dacanay, Marichi Gandiongco, Jenny Rose Guerrero, Heidi Ong, Chrizel Lagunday, Nikki Santiago, Bianca Uy and 13-year-old sensation Denjylie Cordero.

Joseph said all the swimmers will be required to sign a contract indicating their willingness and ability to abide by team membership and training policies of PASA. The signing is set on Saturday.

Tennis bold prediction ó five golds The Philippine Star 10/20/2005

A leading Philippine tennis official predicts the sport will score an ace in the 23rd Southeast Asian Games.

"We have a stronger team this time. We have a strong grassroots program and despite budget constraint, weíre able to send our athletes abroad to train and play against world-class competitors," said Col. (ret.) Salvador Andrada, chairman and former president of the Philippine Tennis Association (PTA).

The decision of Fil-American tennis star Cecil Mamiit, a veteran campaigner in the ATP Tour, to play for the national team is what makes Andrada confident about winning at least a number of gold medals in the sport.

"A good of five (gold medals) and a worse of three," said Andrada.

Banking on experience and a year-round training in noted tennis academy in Australia and India, Andrada said the gold may come in the menís single event, where the 22-year old US-educated Fil-Am will see action.

"Mamiitís only rival in the event is Danai Ochok of Thailand, wala nang iba. Malaki ang laban natin dahil for the record lamang si Mamiit sa kanilang head-to-head duel," said Andrada.

Ochok is the second best tennis player in Thailand next to Paradorn Srichaphan who opted not to join the team due to his tight schedule in the Tour, although the 23-year old Olympian is setting his eyes in the Asian Indoor Championship set just days after the SEA Games.

Mamiit will be paired with Eric Tayno in the menís doubles. PJ Tierro and John Arceo comprise the other members of the menís team.

The womenís squad is composed of Fil-Am Anya Peters, Denise Dy, Lariza Salvador and national youth champion Chariza Mae Arevalo.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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