ANGELES CITY, Pampanga -- The Philippines avoided a winless result in the archery event of the 30th Southeast Asian Games by salvaging a gold medal in the final day at the Clark Parade Grounds in Mabalacat, Pampanga.
Couple Paul Marton and Rachelle Ann dela Cruz topped the mixed compound category by beating Vietnam's Nguyen Van Day and Kieu Oanh Chau by a hair, 148-147, to help the country score its lone medal of the tournament.
This was also the Philippines' first gold in the sport since 2013, when Earl Benjamin Yap, Ian Patrick Chipeco and Delfin Anthony Adriano climbed the top of the podium in the men's team compound category held in Myanmar.
"We just thought we were the last hope for recurve and compounds. When our teammates didn't win, we told ourselves we needed to win one for Philippine archery," Paul said. "We just stayed focused and and thought that as long as we still had arrows, we still had a chance... Thank you so much to all who prayed for us and supported us."
Earlier in the day, the women's compound team composed of Mrs. Dela Cruz, Andrea Robles and Abbigail Tindugan narrowly missed a bronze finish after sustaining a 217-212 loss to Vietnam's Chau, Le Phoang thao and Nguyen Thong Vy.
Vietnam emerged as the overall winner in the event with three golds, two silvers and a bronze to edge Thailand, who had the same number of golds but had only one silver and two third-place finishes for show.
The Philippines, meanwhile, regressed from its 2017 showing of the Games in Malaysia, where the contingent took home 5 medals.