11-14-2008, 12:36 PM
November 14, 2008 issue
FEU Tamaraws, USC open PCCL bids
By Lynde Salgados
MANILA's Far Eastern University and Cebu's University of San Carlos are favored to hurdle their opening game assignments in the Philippine Collegiate Champions League which fires off here Friday at the Xavier University gym.
The FEU Tamaraws battle Ateneo de Zamboanga while the USC-Cebu takes on homegrown pride Capitol University in a double-header which starts shortly after the 5 p.m. ceremonial tip-off to be attended by Misamis Oriental Governor Oscar S. Moreno, Cagayan de Oro 2nd district Congressman Rufus Rodriguez and former mayor Rey Baula of Sumilao, Bukidnon.
Erstwhile Cagayan de Oro College standout JR Cawaling, who already made an impact in the UAAP Games, gets the chance to play before hometown fans as he spearheads the FEU's quest for the regional final slot slot in the PCCL's Zone 4 qualifier.
"It's exciting to watch him play here again. We're proud to have local talents like him excel in the UAAP," said Gerardo "Boboy" Sabal, athletics director of Xavier University, referring to the versatile Cawaling who has physical semblance with Air 21's ace forward Arwin Santos.
On Saturday (Nov. 15), Cawaling and the fancied Tamaraws will face the challenge of host Xavier University Senior Crusaders top-billed by the likes of GB Tagarda, Bee Datinguinoo, JP Erram, Julian Bagares and Paul Siarot. It will be followed by an equally interesting match between the USC and Davao's University of Mindanao.
"Of course, I'll be rooting for my former team in college. With the FEU going here to play is like a trip down memory lane," mused Anton Pabillore, who used to play back-up guard of Johnny Abarrientos with the FEU Tamaraws.
Sanctioned by the BAP-Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas, the PCCL aims to discover basketball talents left untapped in the corner due to lack of opportunity and exposure.
Former PBA chairman and Pilipinas Shell Executive Ray Gamboa heads the list of organizers with former National Coach Joe Lipa as the tournament director.
Each team gets to qualify in the PCCL through the local qualifiers such as the UAAP, NCAA, Cesafi, Cosaa and the like.
Winners of the local qualifiers play in the Regional Finals and the Regional winners advance to the Zonal Finals.
The top 2 teams in the 4 Zonal Championships will then join the 8 seeded teams to compose the "Sweet 16".
Zamboanga Champions Ateneo de Zamboanga University, Davao Champions University of Mindanao, UAAP 3rd placer FEU, CESAFI (Cebu) 3rd placer University of San Carlos, COSAA champion Xavier University and Wild Card entry Capitol University will be slugging it out for the Zone 4 Championships.
11-14-2008, 12:44 PM
Based on the scheduled match-ups any predictions:
11-14-2008, 12:53 PM