March 3, 2024

The second Benguet CARES Awards honored 59 athletes from the region who made waves in the national and international sports scenes during recognition rites at Newtown Hotel in Baguio on April 14.

CARES stands for Cordillera Athletic Recognition for Excellence in Sports.

Recognized as this year’s Best Female Athlete of the Year was Gina Iniong-Araos and Jean Claude Saclag as this year’s Best Male Athlete of the Year.

Araos and Saclag won gold medals in the women’s and men’s low kick in the Asian kickboxing Championship 2022 in Bangkok, Thailand. 

Hailed as Coach of the Year is Jethro Karl Ramos of the Ibaloy triathlete family and head of the Baguio-Benguet Multi Sports Team, for producing tough, young athletes in the field of triathlon who won in numerous events this year in and out of the country.

Danrey Velo, head coach of the Bravehearts Taekwondo Gym, is Sportsman of the Year while his counterpart, Edel Ali Ngina, was honored as Young Sportsman of the Year.

Executive of the Year is Team Lakay Chairman Marquez Sangiao, while Para Athlete of the Year is Denesia Apote Esnara who won two gold medals in the women’s 57-kilogram open category and Master-1 57-kg. and was also awarded the Women’s Best Lifter of the open category in the National Classic Bench Press Championship in December 2022.

Other athletes lauded were Zephania Ngaya, Emmanuel Cantores, Honorio Banario, Claudine Veloso, Carlos Alvarez, and Karol Maguide for kickboxing

Jenelyn Olsim and Carlo Buminaang and their coaches Geje Eustaquio, Ryan Batinay and Jaybe Ban-eg were also recognized in the field of vovinam.

Ban-eg was also cited in coaching kickboxing with wushu athlete Jones Llabres Inso, kurash athlete Charmea Quelino, Muaythai athletes Islay Erika Bomogao, Ariel Lampacan, Clark Fattit, Zaidi Laruan, sambo athlete Mariane Mariano, football athlete Jaclyn Demis Sawicki, wrestler Jason Baucas, and the Ramos family of the Baguio-Benguet Multi Sports Team coach Lou Ann, Dayshaun Karl, Josh, and Arrow for excellence in triathlon.    

Nineteen outstanding taekwondo athletes were also honored, namely Kristauf Bosaing, Kody Wanson, Manilyn Mataag, Elcanor Mang-usan Jr., Viggo Dangiwan, Brylle Cafgongtan, Jasiel Candido, Janice Candido, Jamie Requillo, Josh Daniel Tacio, Liam David Tacio, Alice Rhema Mana-a, Bona Stella Rivera, Ioness Panganiban, Khyla Kreanzzel Guinto, Shaun Masaway, Wayne Eusebio, Xedric James Faroden, and Xian Eusebio.

Outstanding jiu jitsu athletes were Arvin Jose, Gregorio Abalos III, Chad Mayos, and Jan Rensen Mayos.

Recognized in mixed martial arts were Mark Loman, Jhanlo Mark Sangiao, and Jeremy Pacatiw. – Ofelia C. Empian