The PSC Batang Pinoy National Youth Games Rugby (Touch) division was held last Saturday (December 13, 2014) at the University of St. La Salle field in Bacolod City. This was the second year Rugby was included in the list of sports for the National Youth Games.
Ten teams from all over the country traveled to the City of Smiles for this annual tournament. A total of 92 athletes born 1999 or later registered to play for the event. Three juniors teams represented the island of Luzon: Leighton Tuloy sa Don Bosco Foundation and Quest SOS Children's Village from Muntinlupa City and Clark Jets Rugby Club from Angeles, Pampanga. Four teams represented the island of Visayas: Cebu Baby Dragons A, B, and C from Cebu City and host team Bacolod Roosters. Three teams represented the island of Mindanao: Davao Durians Arancillo and Puyat from Davao City and Cagayan de Oro Junior Rafters from Cagayan de Oro City. Acee San juan of the Lady Volcanoes Rugby 7s team led the Oath of Sportsmanship of the young players.
Teams were divided into two pools and played a round robin tournament format, with a win equivalent to 3 points, a draw to 1 point, and no points awarded for a loss. Teams were ranked after the round robin games and top 1 and 2 teams from both pools played crossover semi finals matches against each other. Fifth ranked teams from both pools played against each other for the 9th place. Fourth ranked from both pools played against each other for the 7th place. And third ranked ranked teams played for the fifth place.
In the first semis match, it was pool A first ranked team Leighton Tuloy sa Don Bosco Foundation who came away with a 1-0 win against their Luzon rivals and pool B second ranked team Clark Jets Rugby Club. The second semis match saw the battle of the Davao teams with the older and more experienced Arancillo (pool B first ranked team) team win 3-1 against the Puyat team (pool A second ranked team).
In the battle for third place, it was the junior ruggers from Angeles, Pampanga, who walked away with a win against the Davao Durians Puyat. The Clark Jets boys scored 5 unanswered points against the Puyat boys. The young and athletic boys from Davao fought hard until the last second but the Jets leaned on experience to win the bronze medal. Great job to both teams for this exciting bronze medal watch.
The battle for Gold was definitely the most exciting game of the tournament. Leighton Tuloy sa Don Bosco Foundation and the Davao Durians Arancillo were all out in their quest of being crowned the champions of the Batang Pinoy National Youth Games 2014. For the Tuloy boys, it was their first time to compete in Batang Pinoy Games. For the Davao Arancillo team, this was their chance for redemption from their first runner up finish last year.
It was the Davao Durians Arancillo boys who scored the first try of the match. The Tuloy boys answered back right away with their own version of a try. The last few minutes of regulation was a see saw battle between these two evenly-matched teams. With two minutes remaining in regulation, a Tuloy player was sent off and it gave a chance to the Arancillo boys to take advantage of the overlap. Time wasn't on their side and full time ended with a 1-1 draw.
The match needed to play 'golden point' to determine the champion of the games. Three minutes down in extra time, the Tuloy boys saw an overlap and scored the golden point. It was an exciting finale for these two deserving teams. Hats off to both teams for playing their hearts out in this final game.
Thank you to the Philippine Sports Commission, PSC Commissioner Atty. Jolly Gomez, City of Bacolod, University of St. La Salle - Bacolod, and all the teams who participated in this year's tournament. Thank you to the Hong Kong Flying Kukri Rugby club for the rugby kits for give away. Congratulations to all the winners and we hope to see you all again next year!
Official Batang Pinoy results that are registered with the Philippine Sports Commission for 2014:
GOLD MEDAL SILVER MEDAL BRONZE MEDAL
Leighton Tuloy sa Davao Durians Arancillo Clark Jets Rugby Club
Don Bosco Foundation (Davao City) (Clark, Pampanga)
(Alabang, Muntinlupa City)
MOST VALUABLE PLAYER
Leighton Tuloy sa Don Bosco (Muntinlupa City) - Emerson Alargon
Davao Durians Arancillo (Davao City) - Elven Flores
Clark Jets Rugby Club (Clark, Pampanga) - Godfrey Reyes
Best female athlete - Diana Cosare (Davao Durians Arancillo)
Fair play award - Francis Pasayloon (Cebu Dragons A)
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