SPC teams off to Palau for Micronesia Cup


The Saipan Paddling Club men’s and women’s team representing CNMI in the 22nd Micronesia Cup Canoe Race in Koror, Palau. 
Back row, from left to right, Justin Andrew, Corey Mendiola, Phillip Aldan, Tyler Andrew, Jermaine Salas, and Joe Weaver. Front row, from left to right, Vinalyn Oronigo, Tianna Aldan, Gerlyn Libunao, Erryne Dasalla, Danica Calvo, and Gracie Mendiola. (CONTRIBUTED PHOTO)

The Saipan Paddling Club is sending a women’s and a men’s team to represent the club and the CNMI at the 22nd Micronesia Cup Canoe Race in Koror, Palau that will be held from Friday, Oct. 21 to Sunday, Oct. 23.

The men’s team includes coach and athlete Justin Andrew, Corey Mendiola, Phillip Aldan, Tyler Andrew, Jermaine Salas, and Joe Weaver.

The women’s team consists of Vinalyn Oronigo, Tianna Aldan, Gerlyn Libunao, Erryne Dasalla, Danica Calvo, Gracie Mendiola.

The team will fly to Palau on Thursday, Oct. 20, and will compete the next day, Friday, Oct. 21, in the V1 500m sprints. On Saturday, Oct. 22, the teams will compete in the V6 1500m sprints and V6 500m sprints, and on Sunday, Oct. 23, they will compete in the V6 Long Distance—10 miles for men, eight miles for women. The mixed crew is competing in the five-mile course, but will not compete in the Mix Crew Long Distance as they do not have enough extra paddlers. There is also a mixed crew for the V6 sprints but SPC will not compete in it as well.

The SPC also extends its appreciation to those who have donated to the team: “As the Saipan Paddling Club makes its final preparations to travel to Palau to take part in the Micronesia Cup, its officers, its board and its members would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who have made this trip possible—without the generous donations of funds and in-kind contributions the SPC would not be able to take part in this regional annual outrigger canoe paddle competition.” 

The funding donations were from the Governor’s Office, Saipan Mayor’s Office, IT&E Saipan, Sen. King-Nabors’ office, Sen. Edith Deleon Guerrero’s office, Guma Familia Estates, LLC, TurnKey Solutions, Saipan Select LLC, Sen. Vinnie Sablan’s office, Rep. Leila Staffer’s office, Rep. Edwin Propst’s office, FishGuyz Scuba & Charter, Rep. Denita Yangetmai’s office, Hannam Supermarket, Green Consume Market, San Antonio Supermarket, Delta Management Corp., Rep. Ralph Yumul’s office, Vice Speaker Blas Jonathan “BJ” Attao’s office, The Shack Saipan, and Sara Market.

The in-kind contributions were from Tianna Aldan and family, Phillip Aldan and family, Kalea Andrew and family, Joe Weaver, Tyler Andrew and family, Sylvia Taggart, Krista Falig and family, Dora Ada and family, MarPac Saipan, Dan and Paz Calvo, Vinalyn Oronigo and family, Docomo Pacific Saipan, Oleai Beach Bar & Grill, The Shack Saipan, Edward Dela Cruz – Run Saipan Club, and Robin Sapong – Northern Marianas

The Micronesia Cup Canoe Race has been postponed since 2020 due to COVID 19 restrictions but this year it will bring paddlers from Saipan, Guam, and Palau.

Leigh Gases
Leigh Gases is the youngest reporter of Saipan Tribune and primarily covers community related news, but she also handles the utilities, education, municipal, and veterans beats. Contact Leigh at leigh_gases@saipantribune.com.

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