March 20, 2023

Young athletes from the Team Baguio Karate Do went home with one gold, two silver, and six bronze medals in the Karate Pilipinas Luzon Games 2023 held in Lingayen, Pangasinan on Jan. 20 to 22.

The athletes joined hundreds of other teams for the Luzon qualifiers at the Don Narciso Ramos gymnasium.

YOUNG KARATEKA — Nine-year-old Aleyah Buyogan of Team Baguio Karate-Do won a gold medal in the kumite event of the Karate Pilipinas Luzon Games 2023 held in Lingayen, Pangasinan on Jan. 20 to 22. Aside from the regional qualifiers, karatekas in the country are also preparing for the 10th Southeast Asia Karate Federation Championships slated on March 13 to 19 in Manila. — Contributed photo

Leading the team with a gold medal in the kumite or sparring in her age group is nine-year-old Aleyah Buyogan. 

Dwyane Carrera and Mhelbert Romero contributed one silver in the kumite and one bronze in kata or form, respectively. Romero was the youngest to represent the team at eight years old.

Other team members who won a bronze medal apiece in kata were Andrea Marzan, Mark Torres, Ramon Bacarisas, and Allison Joaquin.

The series of qualifiers for the country’s cream of the crop karatekas in Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao will be until February.

Team Baguio Karate Do coach Rodini Buyogan said the karatekas will also join the 2023 Panagbenga Karate-Do Invitational Tournament on Feb. 26 at the Baguio City National High School auditorium.

Meanwhile, Karate Pilipinas Sports Federation Inc. President Richard Lim said the federation has started training for the 10th Southeast Asian Karate Championships which will be held at the Ninoy Aquino Stadium on March 17 to 19.

Ten countries are expected to join the event, which will also be the precursor for the country’s karatekas who will compete at the SEA Games in Cambodia on May 5 to 17.

The country’s karatekas are also preparing for the World Beach Games in August in Indonesia, Asian Games at Hangzhou, China in September, and the World Championships in Hungary in October. – Ofelia C. Empian