Departing CIT-U coach proud of what team has achieved in Cesafi caging

By JONAS PANERIO |March 14,2019 - 08:38 PM

CIT-U head coach Bembem Alcaraz (left most) with the Wildcats. | contributed photo

Cebu City, Philippines — In spite not having a foreign player to bolster their campaign, Cebu Institute of Technology-University (CIT-U) head coach Bembem Alcaraz beams with pride when talking about his last season at the helm of the Wildcats.

Now in his final weeks as head coach of the college team, with Edsel Vallena reportedly taking over in April, Alcaraz shares how proud he is of his squad, especially with their breakthrough wins last season, that included an upset of the highly touted University of Cebu (UC) Webmasters.

“Ang last season, proud kaayo ko sa team ato because imagine, naka pildi mi sa kusug na team. We played with our hearts and also the team gelled na and nawala na ang jitters,” shared Alcaraz, who will now focus on leading the Wildkittens in the upcoming Cesafi season.

He also shared that the past decade has seen huge changes in Cebu’s collegiate basketball, landscape with foreign players now manning the shaded lane as opposed to his time when the playing field was a lot more even with just local players competing against one another.

“In the recent years, college basketball has changed a lot with the coming of imports into other teams. During my time as a player all teams were even because wala pay import. Now usually ang naay import na team lig-on jud because lamang na sa height,” said Alcaraz. 

“And challenge kaayo for me and to be honest, ang morale sa team inig start low jud because na intimidate na daan sa tag-as na kontra,” he added. 

Mark Christian Kong, one of team’s all stars, said he was saddened to hear of his coach’s departure.

“I felt sad when I heard he is no longer going to be our coach. Of course me and coach Bem shared a lot of wonderful years together gikan pa pag high school  pero excited ko at the same time kay I’m sure we can learn something new with the new coaching staff nga mo tabang namo ma improve and para sa future basketball players sa amo school,” said the crafty lefty.

Kong, however, will not have fellow all star Kenny Rogers Rocacurva with him next season after the promising cager from Camotes Island stopped attending classes at CIT-U. 

Nevertheless, Alcaraz remained hopeful that the super-talented wingman would be able to figure things out in time.

“Kenny is such an excellent player and he would be missed but things happen for a reason and only God can really plan out for us. Whatever Kenny plans to do after I am sure he would have a bright basketball career in front of him.” /bmjo

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