March 23, 2023 (5:47 AM)

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LAST HUDDLE. Ateneo de Davao University’s Lady Blue Knights huddle to discuss their game plan in their Women’s Basketball Championship game against the Holy Cross of Davao College’s Crusaders last March 11 at the HCDC Main Campus. Photo by Kaye Semilla

Landing eleven championships, the Ateneo de Davao University (AdDU) Blue Knights brought honor and pride to Ateneo in the first Davao Association of Catholic Schools, Inc. (DACS) Sportsfest – Tertiary held since the COVID-19 pandemic on March 6-12, 2023. 

The association’s 16 colleges and universities joined the long-awaited athletic meet, with the Blue Knights participating in sports events and socio-cultural events.

The Badminton team for both Men’s and Women’s category defended their titles, continuing their streak as five-time champions in DACS. Meanwhile, the Chess (Women) reclaimed their title after almost 20 years, and the Swimming (Women) team also raced their way to gold.

On their first DACS stint, the College Taekwondo Team prevailed as overall 2nd-runner-ups, bringing home four golds –  two for each in the Kyorugi Men’s and Women’s.

Moreover, the Taekwondo team reaped three silver medals and two bronze in the Kyorugi (Men), and three more silvers in the Women’s category. For the Poomsae event, the team won the silver for the Men’s Individual and bronze for the Men’s team and Women’s individual categories.

Garnering 2nd place in their respective events are the following: Basketball (Men and Women), Volleyball (Women), Swimming (Men) and Chess (Men).

On the other hand, the Football (Men), Futsal (Women), and Volleyball (Men) teams came home with a podium finish. The Table Tennis teams for both Men and Women finished in 4th place.

The first DACS Esports League was also introduced this year, comprising tournaments for Mobile Legends (ML), DOTA 2, and Valorant, by which the Blue Knights Esports Team bagged the first, second, and third places in the said sports, respectively.

Prior to the DACS Sportsfest, the Blue Knights were also given an honorary athletes send-off at the Arrupe Hall last March 2.

One of the highlights for DACS this year as well is the celebration of their 60th foundation anniversary with the theme “A Community of Catholic Schools in DADITAMA Journeying together in Thanksgiving, Formation, Synodality & Mission ”.

The winning participants of this year’s  DACS Sportsfest will qualify for the Catholic Educational Association of the Philippines (CEAP) Mindanao Meet 2023, which will be held in April.

‘Just the beginning’

College Athletic Council (CAC) President and Ateneo Taekwondo Team Captain Veya Yaoto said, “This is just the beginning, we will do more.” 

Yaoto revealed that training started months before DACS. 

“All athletes complete their requirements to play… and train every day to prepare for the game,” she told Atenews.

The team captain said she felt happy that, aside from winning, she was able to bring honor and pride to Ateneo. Aside from her family and friends, Yaoto thanked the athletic department headed by Sir Bemi Garcia.

“Win or lose, what’s important is we all did our best and showed what [an] Atenean Athlete is.” 

The athletes who won in DACS are now preparing to compete for CEAP Mindanao, while the CAC is arranging the Knight of the Blue Knight and the Unity Games for athletes and coaches, set on April 2023.



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