Nopsscea Top 4 to reopen rivalry-A A +A
Monday, September 2, 2013
WEST Negros University starts to defend its men's title and Colegio San Agustin Bacolod take on the first swing when the Negros Occidental Private Schools Sports, Cultural and Educational Association (Nopsscea) opens its collegiate basketball on September 7 at the WNU gym, a week ahead of the formal opening ceremony.
Game time is 3:30 p.m. preceded by the 2 p.m. match between last year's first runner-up University of Negros Occidental-Recoletos Rams and the University of St. La Salle Stingers which served as the curtain-raiser for the Nopsscea Season 33.
Tournament format calls for a double round-robin elimination with a home and away semifinals and championship match.
Also seeing action for the first time after years of hiatus is Visayan Maritime Academy-Global which is expected to further toughen the competition. VMA and John B. Lacson Maritime Foundation, based in Barangay Alijis, were the whipping boys of the top four collegiate squads before until that entry of a Cadiz City school which challenged WNU for the title some years back.
The Mustangs, college basketball king since 1999, is heavily favored over the Eagles while the Stingers have a slight edge over the Rams by virtue of its triumph over UNO-R in Hinigaran summer league championship.
The most anticipated clash, however, is between the Mustangs and the Rams which dispute the title last year. WNU retained the crown but spoiled by controversy after UNO-R did not show up for Game 2 of the Best-of-3 Finals.
Then Nopsscea basketball commissioner Pastor Renato Bravo and assistant George Acot declared the Mustangs champion by forfeiture.
The Recoletos family later filed a petition to the Nopsscea Board which in turn turned down the complaint.
Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on September 02, 2013.