Champion coach Reyes considers team the underdog in VisMin Super Cup hoops

By: Glendale G. Rosal - CDN Digital Correspondent | February 24,2021 - 02:52 PM

SWU-Phinma coach Mike Reyes celebrates with the Cobras after dethroning the UV Green Lancers and bagging the Cesafi men’s basketball crown in this November 22, 2019 file photo.

CEBU CITY, Philippines— Decorated basketball coach Mike Reyes considers his team the underdog in the upcoming Pilipinas VisMin Super Cup which roars off on April 9 in Alcantara town, southwest Cebu.

Reyes, who helms the head coaching assignment for the KCS-Mandaue City team, is already preparing for the grueling, 25-day campaign in a bubble setup. They are going up against six other teams in the Visayas Leg.

“We are underdogs, to be honest,” Reyes said. ” It will be a disadvantage for us, we are not as strong as the other teams. We don’t have star-caliber players or players with names on our roster,” Reyes said.

The KCS-Mandaue City has a diverse roster comprised of veteran and young players who are mostly from Cebu. They are composed of MPBL cagers Bernie Bregondo and Joseph Nalos, along with Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi) Most Valuable Player Shaquille Imperial of SWU-Phinma, Cesafi cagers Steve Castro, Dyll Roncal, Raffy Oktobre, Monic Soliva, Alfred Batino, Vincent Menguito, Enrico Llanto, and Gileant Delator.

“It’s a big challenge for me as a head coach to be able to make each of my players compete against the stronger teams. But it is their perfect opportunity to make name for themselves because this is the big stage of basketball already,” added Reyes.

Reyes who was also the head coach of the 2019 Cesafi men’s basketball champion, the Southwestern University-Phinma (SWU-Phinma) said that the Pilipinas VisMin Super Cup is a big challenge for him. He also coached the Metropolitan Basketball Association’s (MBA) Iloilo Volts.

But on the brighter side, Reyes believes that everyone on his team is very eager and motivated to strut their wares come game day. And that could work to their advantage he said.

“Everyone wants to play. They are on this team because they are given the opportunity to showcase their talent and earn money at the same time. Not everyone was given this kind of opportunity especially in this kind of situation,” said Reyes.

“Although we are the underdogs, everyone is motivated because of the opportunity given to them to have a source of income despite this pandemic. As a coach, my main task is to create a system out of these players who are not familiar with each other, I need to create a team out of these individual players.”

Reyes also revealed they are still looking for a secured indoor basketball court to start their training camp. He said that time is already running out, considering they must be in the bubble setup 14 days before tip-off.

He added that their only chance of initiating a training camp is when they are inside the bubble. The entire team will be billeted in the neighboring town of Moalboal.

Reyes also said that they are planning to sign up two more players to beef up their lineup but refused to reveal their identities. /rcg

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TAGS: Alcantara town, Basketball Tournament, KCS-Mandaue City, mike reyes, Southwestern University-Phinma, UNDERDOG, VisMin Super Cup

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