Province of Negros Occidental welcomed the new year for hoops enthusiasts with the Abanse Negrense – NBTC (National Basketball Training Center) Basketball League north Negros local qualifier opened on January 6 at the Don Edilberto B. Vocal Sr. Memorial Civic Center in the Municipality of Manapla, the host venue for the North Negros Cluster.
Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson led the opening ceremony by giving an inspirational address while Mayor Manuel Escalante III of Manapla delivered a short welcome message.
Anthony Carlo Agustin, provincial sports office head/provincial NBTC coordinator/provincial SBP (Samahang Basketball ng Pilipinas) director, spearheaded the management of the tournament with the Provincial Sports Office team. Also in attendance during the opening ceremony were Manapla ABC president Ronie Salo and Manapla sports coordinator Jaycris Aguirre.
Ten U-19 teams from various local government units and basketball clubs participated in the league, namely from San Carlos City, Municipality of Calatrava, Yutang Bulahan (Escalante City), JJP Sportswear Team (Sagay City), Caduhaan National High School (Cadiz City), Municipality of Manapla, Sagay City Senior High School, One Silay Team (Silay City), Notre Dame of Talisay City, and Murcia Open Bible Christian Academy, Inc. (MOBCA – Murcia).
Following the opening program, MOBCA (Murcia) headlined the first game of the tournament with a win over the Municipality of Manapla with a score of 84-68. One Silay Team also emerged victorious with a 15-point lead against JJP Sportswear of Sagay with a final score of 85-69.
Basketball fans were on the edge of their seats watching the third game between Talisay City and Caduhaan National High School (Cadiz) after scoring 84-81 at the end of the last quarter. An overtime game was expected but Caduhaan National High School missed the game tying shot, resulting in Talisay City ending the game with a 3-point lead.
Escalante City, on the other hand, won against Sagay City Senior High School with a score of 99 – 81.
After the successful north Negros local qualifier, the Abanse Negrense – NBTC Basketball League went to South Negros districts with the Municipality of Pontevedra as the host LGU. The south Negros local qualifier opened on Sunday at the Pontevedra Gymnasium.
On behalf of the governor, Agustin led the program with the opening remarks, while Pontevedra Councilor Aurelio Garrita gave a welcome address on behalf of Mayor Jose Maria Alonso. Councilor Dan Perez, Pontevedra municipal sports coordinator Romy Parpa, and Dency Grace Padillon (SGOD – Education Program Supervisor, SDO Negros Occidental) were among the guests at the event.
The South Negros Cluster is composed of ten participating teams, including Valladolid, La Carlota City, Pontevedra, Arangka La Castellana, Kabankalan City A, Kabankalan City B, Ilog, Equiper Scorpions (Kabankalan City), Sipalay City, and Hinigaran.
In the first game, Pontevedra took the game with a 14-point lead against Ilog, with a final score of 88 – 74. La Carlota City, on the other hand, defeated Sipalay City with a score of 88 – 72.
Valladolid also beat Kabankalan A with a score of 67 – 54, while Kabankalan’s Equiper Scorpions enjoyed victory with a 13-point lead against the Municipality of La Castellana with a final score of 80 – 67.
Following the North and South Negros Local Qualifier opening, the Abanse Negrense – NBTC Basketball League Central Negros Local Qualifier is also set to open on January 13, at the Montalbo Court in Bacolod City.*