BPBL organizers preparing early for Season 2
CEBU CITY, Philippines—The organizers of the Batang Pilipino Basketball League (BPBL) are preparing early for Season 2, which is tentatively set to unfold with its regional eliminations in April.
BPBL commissioner Ron Camara led a meeting with the Region VII district coordinators on Monday evening, February 27, 2023, in a hotel in downtown Cebu City to iron out concerns and start preparing for the regional elimination tournament in Cebu.
Camara, along with Region VII coordinator Van Halen Parmis, went to Ormoc, Bohol, and Siquijor to formally welcome these LGUs to BPBL’s fold.
“Because of the success of Season 1, BPBL is getting bigger and becoming stronger. That’s why we’re preparing this early for Season 2 because of the increasing number of regions that want to become part of the BPBL,” said Camara.
In BPBL Season 1, Cebu’s cagers made waves in the grand finals.
The Abellana National School (ANS) ruled the girls under-18 division bagging the P300,000 purse after beating Cagayan de Oro of Northern Mindanao, 43-36, in the winner-take-all championship match at the FilOil Flying V Center in San Juan, Metro Manila.
Meanwhile, the Sambag 2 Future Basketball Academy settled for first runner-up in the boys under-18 division.
“Region VII is one of the biggest regions we have in the BPBL, considering it’s where the inaugural girls champions come from and it’s also where the boys runners-up come from. Besides that, Region VII is a great place to discover basketball talents and the participation is always big in terms of the number of teams,” Camara explained.
With that in mind, there are an estimated 10 districts in Region 7 that are expected to compete in the regional eliminations, most of which are from Cebu.
Some notable Cebuano cagers such as Bonel Balingit and champion coach Paul Alelu Flores are designated with their own districts.
CHANCE TO SHOWCASE TALENTS
The 6-foot-9 Balingit will handle Region VII’s District 3 in Cebu, which covers the southwestern towns, while Flores, who led the Consolacion Sarok Weavers to the Pilipinas Super League (PSL) 21-U national finals, will oversee Consolacion, Cordova, and Camotes’ regional eliminations.
“Sa panahon namo, wala pa jud mga ing-ani nga tournaments nga maabot gyud og national finals maong pasalamat sad ko nga naa nay ing-ani karon kay mahatagan jud ug saktong opportunity atong kabatan-onan sa pagpakita sa ilahang talent sa basketball,” said Balingit, a former PBA player.
(In our time, there were no tournaments like this wherein it reaches the national finals that’s why I am thankful there is a tournament like this now as it gives our youth a chance to showcase their talents in basketball.)
“Dako kaayo ni nga opportunity labi na sa mga out of school youth, pwede nila mapakita ilahang talent sa basketball, pwede sila mahatagan ug opportunity ma discover sa mga eskwelahan ug scholarships. Daghan ta matabangan nga kabatan-onan nga nag dream mahimong basketball player someday,” he added.
(This is a huge opportunity especially for the out-of-school youth. They can show their talent in basketball and be given a chance to be discovered by schools for scholarships. We can help a lot of kids who dream to become basketball players someday.)
Flores, meanwhile, is thankful that he is part of the tournament that has proven its success.
“Thankful kaayo ko nga nahimo kong part ani nga tournament. Daghan ang gusto maghimo ug ingon ani pero daghan ang dili kahuman. Kani nakahuman ug successful jud siya,” said Flores.
(I am very thankful to be part of this tournament. A lot tried to organize a tournament like this but couldn’t finish. This one finished with success.)
Also overseeing a district is Sambag 2 FBA’s head coach Leode Garcia.
Around a hundred teams from various cities, municipalities, and basketball academies around Region 7 are expected to field in their respective teams in the boys and girls 18-under.
They expect more to join as Camara and the BPBL are cooking up plans to include a 15-under. They are also looking to add 13-under or 12-under divisions.
“We’re on the right direction because we’re able to provide the grassroots level of basketball its much deserved exposure in the national scene,” said Camara.
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