Athlete of the Month: Rinna Babanto

Photo by: Kiana Carlos

Growing up in Cebu City, Rinna Babanto was part of a dance group in grade school. Her Taekwondo career started when she fell in love with the sport while watching her younger brother’s training in school. And ever since, she has never stopped playing.

Babanto, who was only 14 years old in 2011, was scouted by the Philippine Taekwondo Poomsae Team’s head coach after seeing her at the National Carlo Palanca Jr. Taekwondo Championship in Manila.

Two years later, Babanto competed in the 8th WTF World Taekwondo Championship in Bali, Indonesia. She competed in the Junior Women’s team category and emerged on top, bringing home a gold medal.

In the same year, she competed in the 2013 Southeast Asian Games in Naypyidaw, Myanmar. Despite being only 16, she competed in the Senior Women’s team category alongside Philippine Taekwondo veterans, Rani Ortega and Janice Lagman-Lizardo.

Less than two months before the biggest tournament of her career, Babanto sustained a meniscus tear in her right knee. She recovered from a surgery she underwent in June of last year, and competed in the 18th Asian Games in Jakarta, Indonesia. Despite her an injury, she and her team garnered the bronze medal in the Senior Women’s team category.

Like any other athlete from the province, Babanto dealt with homesickness in her early years in the De La Salle University (DLSU). She learned how to cope with it through the help of the Office of Sports Development (OSD), her teammates, her coach, her friends, and her family.

From her third year of college up to now, Babanto has led the DLSU Poomsae Team as team captain.

Rinna Babanto is now a graduating student in Sports Management. She continues to train with the national team in preparation for the 2019 Southeast Asian Games. Her busy schedule consists of training, going to the gym, consulting with a mental coach, and going to class.

Due to her contributions to the Lasallian community, Babanto has been a recipient of the prestigious Gawad Lasalyano award since her first year of college.

Aside from being a full-time student-athlete, Babanto spends time with her friends and teammates outside training hours. She loves to read and travel. She also does a bit of modelling.

Overall, Rinna Babanto is someone who can balance academics and training while having fun. Be sure to watch out for her as she continues to dominate Philippine Taekwondo.

Green Booters suffer second loss of Season 81 against Red Warriors

The De La Salle University (DLSU) Green Booters suffered their second loss of the UAAP
Season 81 Men’s Football Tournament against the University of the East (UE) Red Warriors, 0-1, last Thursday, February 28, at the FEU Diliman Football Field.

For the first half of the game, the Taft-based squad pressed the UE Red Warriorrs and had
good territory of the ball. At the 26th minute, a yellow card was flashed on UE’s Rino Saldivar. However, Shanden Vergara was not able to capitalize with the free kick. Despite having good defense and strategy, the score remained 0-0 at the end of the first half.

After having a difficult time of making it past the Green Booters’ defense, the Red Warriors’ quickly made a goal six minutes into the second half, courtesy of their midfielder Mark Lerion. At the 54th minute of the game, another yellow card was issued to UE’s defender, Louie Polinag.

The Green Booters ran out of time and failed to overcome the Red Warriors. The game ended with the final score of 0-1.

Catch the DLSU Green Booters in their next game against the National University Bulldogs on Sunday, March 3, 3 PM at the FEU Diliman Football Field.

DLSU Lady Jins land 3rd place; Green Jins finish 5th place

The De La Salle University (DLSU) Lady Jins landed at 3rd place, 4-2, while the Green Jins finished 5th place at the UAAP Season 81 Taekwondo Tournament held at the Ateneo de Manila University (ADMU) Blue Eagle Gym last November 7 to 9.

The Lady Jins started the tournament strong after conquering ADMU on the first day with a score of 5-2, but they lost after facing back-to-back champions National University (NU), 3-4. They bowed down to the University of Santo Tomas (UST) on the second day, 3-4, but they were able to beat the University of the Philippines (UP), 5-2. The Taft-based squad demolished their remaining opponents, University of the East (UE) and Far Eastern University (FEU). They scored 4-3 against UE and swept FEU, 7-0, thus securing their spot on the podium.

On the other hand, the Green Jins did not have a good start due to losing Kyle Arsenal, bantamweight player, to an ankle injury in their first match against UST, 3-4. To end the first day, they were dominated by UP, 2-5. On the second day, the team lost another player due to an injury. Despite this, they won against FEU with a score of 4-3. Mitch Agapito was replaced by rookie Dylan Reyes for the remaining matches. The Green Jins failed to defeat UE, 3-4. On the final day, they won against ADMU, 4-3, but lost against defending champions NU, 3-4.

Team captain of the Lady Jins, Lovely Avanceña, won gold for the finweight division. Rookie Akila Boloto won gold and was hailed the rookie of the year for UAAP Season 81. Shannelle Romuar and Gab Yuchingtat won bronze and silver for the welterweight and heavyweight division.

Last year’s rookie of the year, Alvaro Aranton, won gold for the heavyweight division in the Men’s Taekwondo Tournament while rookie, Gian Gutierrez, landed silver.

UAAP Taekwondo Day 2

The De La Salle University (DLSU) Green and Lady Jins went for 0-2 and 1-1, respectively, in the second day of the UAAP Season 81 Taekwondo Competition on November 7, at the Ateneo de Manila University (ADMU) Blue Eagle Gym.

The Green Jins faced University of Santo Tomas (UST) in their first match, where the latter claimed the close victory, 3-4. In their second match, they also failed to redeem themselves against University of the Philippines (UP). The Diliman-based edged the Taft-based squad, 2-5.

On the other hand, their lady counterparts secured their first win of the season after beating ADMU, 5-2. However, they failed to keep their momentum up as they then lost to back-to-back champions National University (NU), with a score of 3-4.

Yesterday, the Poomsae Team of DLSU brought back the championship to Taft with 3 gold medals and 1 silver medal.

The battle continues at the ADMU Blue Eagle Gym for the Green and Lady Jins as the men’s team face Far Eastern University (FEU) and University of the East (UE) while the women’s team face UST and UP.

DLSU Poomsae Team: Back on Top

The De La Salle Poomsae Team brought back the championship title with 3 gold medals and 1 silver medal at the Ateneo Blue Eagle Gym, Tuesday.

Rinna Babanto, captain of the Poomsae team, came out on top of the semifinals for the individual female category alongside UP and FEU. In the finals, she scored 8.180 which brought her the gold medal while UP scored 8.000 and FEU scored 7.900.

Rookie Patrick Perez made his mark for the team as he won the gold medal in the individual male category with a score of 8.305. UST and NU followed with a score of 8.150 and 8.035 respectively.

For the mixed pair category, individual gold medalists Babanto and Perez also claimed first place.

Angel Gaw, Zyka Santiago, and Mikee Regala failed to enter the finals and landed in fourth place in the team female category. For the team male category, Rico Mella, McAvyngyr Alob, and Jesse Ignacio bagged the silver medal.

Babanto, who is also a graduating student, was awarded the Most Valuable Player. Perez, on the other hand, was awarded Rookie of the Year. Both were excellent in their respective categories.

This is the second championship for the De La Salle Poomsae team.


UAAP Season 81 Preview: DLSU Green and Lady Jins

The Green and Lady Jins are ready to kick their way to the top this UAAP Season 81 with their eyes on the prize after finishing 4th and 5th last season.

The De La Salle Poomsae team, on the other hand, are looking forward to reclaiming the crown after falling to the University of Santo Tomas Poomsae team last year.

Change of Strategy

There was no time to dwell over last season. With only a few days to recover, the Green and Lady jins were already back in training for UAAP season 80.

With adjustments made to their training program, the team’s preseason competitions served as its training grounds to test its change in strategy. Each player has improved and showed that having no days off has paid off.

IR Donato, team captain of the Green Jins, said “We trained hard like never before. The preparation was heavy and we just kept on pushing each other to exceed our limits. There were times when we thought of giving up, but we never did because we want to win.”

What to Expect

For this season, the Green and Lady Jins are hoping to land a podium finish. Lovely Avanceña, team captain of the women’s taekwondo team, said that there are no expectations because there are also many graduating players from the other schools. “Ang masasabi ko lang is gagawin namin ang best namin as a team para maibalik namin yung korona sa Taft.”

From the Poomsae team, graduating player Rico Mella said that with their new players Patrick Perez, Kiko Ignacio, Mikee Regala, and Zyka Santiago, first place is right within their reach.

Donato also said that we should expect a team that’s willing to do whatever it takes to win. “And most of all a fun team that enjoys every match we face.”

Catch them in action at the Ateneo Blue Eagle Gym on November 6 to 9.

Green Spikers still on the hunt for a win

The DLSU Green Spikers bowed down to the undefeated FEU Tamaraws earlier today after a game with two sets, 21-11, 21-10.

Geraint Bacon and Paul Serrano of the De La Salle Green Spikers are still winless after six games into the competition. Jude Garcia and Kevin Hadlocon of the Far Eastern University Tamaraws, on the other hand, are secured a spot in the semifinals of the UAAP Season 81 Beach Volleyball.

Prior to today’s game, the Green Spikers lost to the Ateneo Blue Eagles men’s beach volleyball team, 21-11, 21-19.

Afternoon games were cancelled earlier today due to the inclement weather. Bacon and Serrano will be facing the Adamson University men’s beach volleyball team on the Friday, October 5.


Lady Woodpushers continue their winning streak; Green Woodpushers strive for a win

The Lady Woodpushers are once victorious, while the Green Woodpushers still see themselves looking for answers as the two chess teams went to war against FEU and NU, respectively, at the UST Quadricentennial Pavilion on Saturday.

The Lady Woodpushers are on a winning streak with their second victory of the season, 2.5-1.5, after defeating Far Eastern University’s women’s chess team.

DLSU’s Ella Grace Moulic and Samantha Glo Revita won against their FEU opponents with a score of 1-0. Mira Mirano tied with FEU’s Dela Torre, 0.5-0.5, while Franchell Eds Javier lost to her opponent with a score of 0-1.

The Green Woodpushers, on the other hand, still couldn’t land a win against a tough NU chess team, as they were halted by Season 81’s host school with a score of 1.5-2.5.

Tristan Frech Ibaoc scored the sole win for the team with a card of 1-0. Raymond Albert Ng and Justine Co both lost to their opponents at a score of 0-1, while Giovanni Mejia tied with his NU opponent, 0.5-0.5.

The Lady Woodpushers and Green Woodpushers are onto their next battle against UE and FEU, respectively, at the UST Quadricentennial Pavilion tomorrow, September 23.

Green Booters bow to the UP Fighting Maroons

The De La Salle Green Booters failed to defeat the UP Fighting Maroons, 0-2, in the UAAP Season 80 Men’s Football Tournament yesterday at FEU Diliman Football Field.

At the start of the match, the UP Fighting Maroons showed that they were eager to score early on. Despite their strategy, Raphael De Guzman, last season’s Best Goalkeeper, denied their efforts with quick thinking.

A crucial error from Nathan Alcantara gave UP’s Saavedra a goal off a penalty kick in the 27th minute of the game. Nicholas Villacin substituted for Matthew Custodio towards the end of the first half. Villacin’s momentum was spoiled by UP’s goalkeeper.

La Salle’s rookie, John Logarta, denied the attempt UP made during the 78th minute.

However, with nine minutes left in regulation, Tacordon gives the UP Fighting Maroons a goal to secure the victory, 0-2.

Green Spikers shoot down Soaring Falcons in four sets

The De La Salle Green Spikers claimed their third win of the season after defeating the Adamson Soaring Falcons in four sets, 25-20, 25-15, 24-26, 25-22, in the UAAP Season 80 Men’s Volleyball Tournament yesterday at the FilOil Arena in San Juan.

Raymark Woo, Cris Dumago, and John Delos Reyes showed off their blocking skills in the first set. Adamson got aggressive as they tried to get ahead of La Salle but Keiffer Reyes and Arjay Onia denied their efforts. Reyes closes the first set with a block, 25-20.

Delos Reyes started off the second set by rejecting Adamson’s attempt to score. The Soaring Falcons committed multiple mistakes with service errors and net touches. Woo ended a long rally with an attack from the back row thus giving La Salle a seven point advantage. An attack from Delos Reyes sealed the second set, 25-15.

The Green Spikers and Soaring Falcons were neck-and-neck in the third set. Adamson stepped up as Miranda’s attacks went through the blocks of La Salle. Onia’s attacks pushed the team to their match point, 24-21. Due to a service error from Dumago, the Soaring Falcons were able to extend the set. Adamson snatched the third set with an attack from Pablico, 24-26.

The Taft-based squad emerged victorious despite having errors all throughout the fourth set, 25-22.

Onia was awarded as player of the game with 22 points. The Green Spikers will face the defending UAAP Men’s Volleyball Champions, the Ateneo Blue Spikers, on March 3 at the MOA Arena.