AS CLASSES open, the Ceres-La Salle Football Team of University of St. La Salle is getting ready for the 2014-2015 season of the Negros Occidental Private Schools Sports, Cultural and Educational Association (Nopsscea).

Interviewed over dyEZ’s Aksyon Isports, La Salle's veteran mentor Freddie “Nene” Lazarito said they have been in tough preparation since the conclusion of the National Prisaa games in Tagum City.

“Actually, we didn’t stop our training and preparation because we have to defend our titles. Many schools and teams aim to dethrone us thus we have to focus and keep our team stronger,” he said.

Aside from being the Nopsscea champion, Lazarito added that they are also the reigning National Prisaa and UniGames defending titlist.

“I know that many teams particularly those from Manila are building up their respective teams to outplay us and beat our team,” Lazarito said.

“At the recent Palarong Pambansa in Laguna, I saw Manila-based coaches and scouts holding massive recruitment of potentials to strengthen their teams,” he added.

“I also did some scouting and recruitment since many of my players have graduated. I have to ensure that my team remains strong this season,” the veteran mentor said.

Lazarito disclosed that among his recruits from the Palaro include those from Holy Cross-Dumaguete’s Charles Ralph Allan Dabao, and Shane Larry Sarmiento from Abellana National School of Cebu, who both represented the Central Visayas side.

Northern Mindanao’s Charles Ivan Barberan from Bukidnon National High School, Ilonggo KJay Gedor, and Patric Joy Amanquiton of Bago City are rookies too.