Philippines, 25 Apr 2018
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Dong Secuya
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Mark F. Villanueva



2017 will end today and this writer will summarize what he scribbled for the year about boxing and other sports in Maasin City and their boxing heroes. Likewise I included my other advocacies such as scouting and tobacco-free city campaign because they are part of promoting a healthy and sporty Maasin City.

* * *

Prince Albert Pagara of the ALA Boxing Gym, Cebu City was honored by the City Government of Maasin during the 17th Charter Day Boxing Tournament on August 4 at the Maasin City Integrated Terminal. City Mayor Nacional Mercado with City Vice Mayor and City Sports Council Chairman Maloney Samaco and SP Sports Committee Chairman Councilor Zaldy Olita bestowed the award on the young Pagara who gave pride and glory to the city as well as the country in fights here and abroad.

* * *

There were 27 bouts held that night involving boxers from Leyte and Southern Leyte. As expected host Maasin City garnered the most wins with eight victories to only two losses. Ormoc City has six wins with six losses, Leyte Sports Academy has three wins with four losses, Hindang of Leyte has two wins with three losses. While Liloan (2-0), San Juan (2-3) and Padre Burgos (2-4) all of Southern Leyte has two wins each. Matalom of Leyte (1-2) and Macrohon (1-0) of Southern Leyte has one win each. Winless were Hinunangan of So. Leyte with two losses and Tacloban City with one loss.

* * *

The host City of Maasin garnered the overall championship in the 57th Southern Leyte Anniversary Inter-Town and Invitational Boxing Tournament held at the Capitol Sunken Garden on June27-29. Maasin City sent ten boxers to the finals and nine of them came out victorious to win nine gold medals out of the fourteen weight divisions.

* * *

In line with the celebration of the 72nd Leyte Landing Anniversary, an Open/Invitational Boxing Tournament was held at Robinsons Place Activity Area in Tacloban City last October 20. The boxing card was dubbed "The Battle of the Leyte Gulf." There were 17 featured boxing bouts held in the biggest shopping mall of the Region of Eastern Visayas. Maasin City sent five boxers, with three of them winning their fights.

* * *

Albert Pagara brutally stopped Thailand's Aekkawee Kaewmanee in their super-bantamweight bout at Pinoy Pride 41 on July 8 at the IEC Convention Center in Cebu City. Pagara unleashed a powerful shot to the body in the fourth round that floored Kaewmanee. The Thai could not beat the count and was carried on a stretcher out of the ring.

* * *

Albert Pagara sent Mohammed Kambaluta of Tanzania to the canvas two times en route to a stoppage win at 2:29 of the second round in the supporting event of Pinoy Pride 43: Battle in Bohol in November 25 at the Bohol Wisdom Gymnasium. Pagara has now won his third straight after absorbing his only loss against Cesar Juarez in July 2016.

* * *

Jason Pagara missed the weight limit by two and-a-half pounds then lost by sixth-round technical knockout to Hiroki Okada on December 19 at Korakuen Hall in Tokyo, Japan. Before the stoppage, Pagara was trailing on all three judges' scorecards when the fight was stopped 59 seconds into the sixth round. It was his first defeat in six years.

* * *

Jason Pagara survived a split draw against Kenyan James Onyango last September 16 after 10 months of inactivity. Onyango was a substitute fighter after his original opponent Ghanaian Richmond Djarbeng withdrew from the fight due to a road accident injury. It was a co-feature of Pinoy Pride 42 at the Waterfront Hotel and Casino, Cebu City.

* * *

Adones Aguelo lost to WBO No. 4 lightweight contender Nihito Arakawa of Japan by a unanimous decision in a ren-round non-title fight in December 3 in Tokyo, Japan. Arakawa, who weighed in at 137.75 lbs, convinced all the three judges with the scores of 97-93, 97-93, and 98-93 over the durable Aguelo, who came in at 138 lbs.

* * *

Aguelo fought but lost by a six-round unanimous decision to unbeaten Mexican Erick de Leon in the undercard of the Vasyl Lomachenko vs. Miguel Marriaga WBO world super featherweight title fight last August 5 at the Microsoft Theater, Los Angeles, California. Aguelo won by unanimous decision over Rex Olisa in a ten-rounder in Guihulngan City Auditorium, Guihulngan, Negros Oriental last May 23.

* * *

Maasin City athletes competed in the Batang Pinoy Visayas Qualifying Leg on November 10-16 in Dumaguete City where they placed 23rd in the overall medal standings among 54 LGUs who participated.

* * *

Maasin City placed fourth overall during the Eastern Visayas Regional Athletic Association meet held in Naval, Biliran on February 5-10. They won 28 gold, 34 silver and 44 silver medals and placed 2nd in the elementary and 8th in the secondary division.

* * *

I attended the Philippine Sports Commission meeting of Governors and Mayors and stakeolders at Crown Regency Hotel in Cebu City on March 14 to seek support on the reactivation of Executive Orders 63 and 64 mandating the creation of Physical Fitness and Sports Development Councils in all barangays, municipalities, cities, and barangays. It also calls on all local government units and national agencies to support the national "Sports for All" program.

* * *

Maasin-born Ramon Fernandez, four-time PBA MVP, who is now a PSC Commissioner, is one of the facilitators in the sports summit. He later met with sports officials of the different cities in Eastern Visayas in Ormoc City last November to discuss the proposed PSC Visayas Open and Children's Games.

* * *

The 3rd One Visayas Boy Scouts Jamboree in October 24-29 with the local government of Bayawan City and the Negros Oriental BSP Council playing host to more than 4,000 Boy Scouts and adult leaders at the city's odorless sanitary landfill at Sitio Maninihon, Barangay Omod. The venue is a sprawling man-made forest area which also serves as the ecological center of this city. As BSP Council Chairman of Southern Leyte, I went with our contingent together with my wife Chona and slept in the camp together with the scouts and adults in our respective tents.

* * *

There was a great number of scouts all over Southeast Asia and some countries in Asia who converged on November 27-December 2 at the Energy Park, Tagum City, Davao del Norte for the 6th ASEAN Scouts Jamboree. The official count during opening ceremony was 29,753 scouts and adult leaders, a record breaking attendance in any Asian scouts gathering. Just the same, together with my wife Chona, we slept in the campsite to accompany the scouts and adults of the Southern Leyte Council.

* * *

I attended the 5th ASEAN Summit of Smoke-Free Leaders and Champions in Penang, Malaysia last July 19-22. I was one of the speakers with the topic "Advancing Towards a Tobacco-Free City" sharing the strategies and best practices of the Tobacco-Free Maasin City. I cited our Smoke-Free sports activities we hosted such as Smoke-Free EVRAA 2012, Smoke-Free National and Visayas ABAP Championships, Smoke-Free Batang Pinoy Visayas Leg, Smoke-Free National Scouts Venture Camp, Smoke-Free Regional Taekwondo Tournaments, among others.

* * *

Maasin-born President Rodrigo Duterte signed an executive order banning smoking in public places nationwide. Executive Order 26 was signed in time for the celebration of World No Tobacco Day on May 31. EO No. 26 is entitled “Providing for the establishment of smoke-free environments in public and enclosed spaces” and prohibited smoking in enclosed public spaces and public conveyances, whether stationary or in motion.

Happy Sporty and Healthy New Year to everyone! From Maloney, Chona, Mallory, Marton and Marlon.

Click here to view a list of other articles written by Maloney L. Samaco.

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