Rivals face off anew-A A +A
Saturday, August 17, 2013
IT’S going to be a dogfight of a basketball game at the Cebu Coliseum tonight.
This is how coaches of University of the Visayas Green Lancers and Southwestern University Cobras see it when the old-time rival schools face each other for the first time in the 2013 Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi) College Basketball tournament at 6:45 p.m.
In the high school division, defending champion Sacred Heart School-Ateneo de Cebu (3-0) will try to keep its record clean against the University of the Visayas Baby Lancers (2-1) at 4:30 p.m.; the Cebu Eastern College Dragons (3-1) will try to bounce back against the University of San Jose-Recoletos Baby Jaguars (0-3) at 2:45 p.m.; and the University of Southern Philippines Foundation Baby Panthers (1-0) will play the Cebu Institute of Technology-University Wildkittens (1-2) in the curtain raiser at 1 p.m.
The storied rivalry and the pre-season friction are expected to provide more excitement to this match, which could give the winner an automatic slot to the semifinals, barring any hitches in their next games.
Both teams, too, are the only two college squads with corporate backers.
“We are prepared. We are a physical team and that is our character, we will fight to win. But I reminded my players that once the physicality gets overboard, they should stay to the gameplan. And don’t be distracted by the physical game,” UV coach Felix Belano told Sun.Star Cebu.
Belano want his team to concentrate on team chemistry, character and conditioning.
Coach Raul Alcoseba, for his part, said he has no special preparation for UV.
“Our priority is to be the no.1 seed so (that) we can have some rest. (But) we are not only focusing on UV but the other teams as well. But since SWU and UV are rivals, then it would be very interesting knowing UV will be hungry and well-prepared. I’m expecting a dogfight from start to finish,” Alcoseba said.
Cesafi Commissioner Felix Tiukinhoy Jr. is not providing extra security for this game.
“I trust that the coaches can control their players, so there is no need to put up additional security. And there are stiff penalties waiting for those who will engage in a fistfight,” said Tiukinhoy, referring to what happened between the two teams in Alcoy last month.
With only four from last year’s lineup left, SWU is a relatively new and developing team, and the multi-titled bench tactician wants to build the team chemistry by playing every game with intensity.
SWU was pushed to the limit before scoring a 76-70 win against the USC Warriors last Aug. 4. But they failed to shake off the listless CIT-U Wildcats early in their game before scoring a 91-63 win.
UV opened the season with an 81-62 win over the UC Webmasters and were threatened several times before beating the USJ-R Jaguars, 91-80.
Again, Alcoseba will rely on the skilful Mark Jayven Tallo, team skipper Monbert Arong and Adam Mohammed on the backcourt and on Bernie Goloran and Fabrice Sewei at the front court, while Belano will need to push John Abad, Vincent Mendoza, Cris Perolino, Wowie Escosio and Steve Akomo to battle the Cobras for each point.
Coming off the bench for SWU are Landry Sanjo, Daryl Goloran, Mark Panerio, Nilton Otida, Jabe Bautista, Francis Ortega and Melvin Holper, while the Lancers have Mike Harry Nzesseu, Arvie Cabanero, Raffy Octobre, Alfred Codilla, Venhur Villamor, Christian Fajardo.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on August 17, 2013.