Champion Cebuana runner Loberanis joins UP’s track team
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Bemedalled Cebuana trackster Mary Joy Loberanis officially joins the University of the Phillippines (UP) Fighting Maroons as a college varsity athlete, revealed the vaunted runner.
Loberanis, who dominated the middle-distance events in the Milo Little Olympics, Milo Marathon, and other regional athletic meets, revealed that she is very optimistic and excited to join the Fighting Maroons’ track and field team in UP Diliman.
It’s been a very fruitful ten years for Loberanis under the USC Warriors fold, where she made her mark as one of the best young runners in Cebu. She is trained by her father, Arvin.
“Nindot ilang offer ug opportunity nila para nako sa akong academics ug sa akong athletic career. Also, if adto ko mo graduate sa UP, mas daghan opportunities compared diri sa Cebu,” said Loberanis.
“I love USC, naa sad daghan opportunities mag wait sa mga graduates diri, pero mas nakita nako ang opportunities sa Manila. Daghan sad ug advantages if didto ko mo gradaute.”
Renowned athletic coach and running events organizer Rio Dela Cruz who is the UP Fighting Maroons’ athletic manager, recruited Loberanis and another Cebuana, Samantha Gem Limos, to their track and field team.
“I will surely miss being a Carolinian and also the environment. I’ve been a Carolinian since grade 4 pako,” added Loberanis, who will take up BS Accountancy in UP.
In UP, she will compete in her forte events which are the 800-meters, 1,500m, and 3,000m runs.
“Naka feel pud ko ug pressure gamay kay UP baya. Need jud nimo i balance imong studies ug athletics didto. Aside ana, mga bangiitan ang mga athletes, so ako jud gi challenge akong self para ani nga opportunity.”
And if there’s the proudest person out there, it would be her father, Arvin, who trained and nurtured her since she was four years old.
“As a father, I felt blessed and at the same time, I feel contented with her achievements. One of the reasons why she transferred is the academic opportunity and also for her to become independent and experience training with new coaches,” said Arvin, USC’s track and field head coach.
Meanwhile, Limos, a gold medalist in the 2016 Palarong Pambansa in the secondary girls 100m dash, will be joining Loberanis with the Fighting Maroons.
The former University of Cebu (UC) Webmaster sprinter transferred to Brent International School in Manila in 2017. Dela Cruz also recruited her there.
“I’m super excited about joining UP’s Track and Field team because I’ve been looking forward to this opportunity for so long already,” said the 19-year old Limos.
“When I transferred from Cebu to Manila four years ago to study in Brent, I was told by coach Rio that I should go straight to UP when I graduate. Of course, knowing na UP’s a very prestigious university and I have friends there, it got me really excited. Now that I already graduated from high school, it feels really surreal because finally after four years of waiting, I am now a part of UP’s Track and Field team!”
Like Loberanis, she will also balance her academics and athletic career. Both of them are currently preparing their requirements to officially enroll in UP.
Loberanis and Limos are not yet informed when they can physically start studying and training there due to the COVID-19 restrictions. /rcg
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