SHUTTLERS from National University dominated the 2018 Smart National Open Badminton tournament on Saturday at the Ayala Malls South Park in Alabang.
Sarah Barredo, the top female badminton player in the country and UAAP Season 81 Rookie of the Year, blitzed through the competition, claiming the women’s title without dropping a set.
The 19-year-old Barredo made quick work of Mia Manguilimotan in the semifinals, 21-8, 21-9, and capped off her spectacular campaign with a sweep of Mikaela Joy de Guzman, 21-13, 21-12.
"Every win is important and precious sa akin and for the national team," shared Barredo, who led NU to fourth place this season. "My UAAP experience is an opener for a new chapter in my student-athlete life. This one legitimized my ranking as the number one in the Philippines."
No. 3 Ros Pedrosa, the UAAP Season 79 MVP, defeated second-ranked Solomon Padiz of PBA Smash Pilipinas in the men's singles finals, 21-13, 22-20.
Pedrosa was able to set up a showdown with Padiz after staving off a tough challenge from Rabie Oba-ob, 21-19, 22-20. Padiz, on the other hand, ended the Cinderella run of UP Fighting Maroon JM Bernardo, 21-18, 21-14.
The men's doubles division saw two of the top tandems in the country battling for the title, with Ariel Magnaye and long-time partner Alvin Morada defeating Joper Escueta and Paul John Pantig, 21-8, 21-9.
Morada and Alyssa Leonardo won the mixed doubles, 23-21, 23-25, 21-17, over Magnaye and Thea Pomar.
Pomar and Leonardo earned the women’s gold, beating Kanna Baba and Mariya Sevilla, 21-17, 21-14. In the tournament backed by Smart Communications, MVP Sports Foundation, BaliPure, Smash Pilipinas, Victor PCome Industrial Sales, J.Co Donuts, Prima Pasta, and Forthright Events & Sports Management Inc.