SEEMINGLY equal in firepower and tenacity, the remaining four team survivors in the 2017 Ballpals "Baby James Cup" Fiesta Conference Inter-Color basketball tournament will part ways in the culmination of the hoopfest at Barangay 24 covered court in Cagayan de Oro City, on Saturday, October 7.
Unbeaten R-ACE Lao Warriors clash with second-seed Decon-WingMark Green Archers at 2 p.m. for the 40-up crown, followed by the 39-below titular bout between undefeated Team Sumanga Duplexx and dangerous rival Team Gustilo FS Car Care.
Team Galanida and Team Madrigal will take the floor first at 1 p.m. in the battle for third place in 39-below level.
Tournament commissioner Dodong Caballero, however, informed that a 3-point shootout will also take centerstage in the championship round to be sponsored again by Hayahay Yes FM through its manager and regular club member Allan Gonzaga.
“Worth P2,000 nga Virginia Food products atong pa premyo sa 3-point shootout hadiin welcome gihapon ang audience to participate,” said Caballero of the Yes FM-backed contest won last year by reigning Ballpals MVP Shian Betonio Galanida.
The Green Archers of Teofilo Conde and WingMark Mercado have an axe to grind against the grandslam-seeking Warriors of Ronald Acenas and Danilo Guevara who waylaid them in the elimination round despite having only seven players in their roster.
“We have height and size advantage against the Warriors so, peldihon namo `ni sila sa padagkoay,” warned Rex Armojallas, who will take the Archers’ frontline in the company of fellow big men Samboy Uy, Michael Pamesa and Janjan Arcaya.
In their bid to win the Ballpals’ crown three years in a row, the Warriors will rely on Christopher Christopher, Darwin Josol, Vulture Balabat, Agapito Mercado, GAT Tamayo and old reliables Balong Mabalot, Marlou Guevara and "Stev Panaz" Salgados.
The Baby James Cup bankrolled by former club president Jamewill Abucejo and supported by sportsman Allen Dangcal stakes P3,000, P2,000 and P1,000 cash prizes for the top-3 finishers in each bracket.
The club president said the individual awards for mythical five, MVP, best coach and the likes will be given during the opening of the 2017 Ballpals Christmas League tentatively set in the last week of October.
Published in the SunStar Cagayan de Oro newspaper on October 08, 2017.