NBTC Cagayan de Oro OPENS ON SUNDAY
CAGAYAN de Oro City-- Youth basketball is formally back in this City of Golden Friendship as the National Basketball Training Center (NBTC) elimination fires off on Sunday at Barangay Macasandig gymnasium.The organizer Arvin Martinez said NBTC has welcomed club teams this time after two years of absence due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Cagayan de Oro NBTC organizer Arvin MartinezHe added that the tournament will be for boys born 2004 and above. A total of 16 school and club teams from all over the city have singed up to join the tournament.They will compete for a lone slot for the regional elimination set in December before the Christmas holidays.Teams joining are Jazz Julo (MOGCHS), MLT Gamba (XU College), Bien Sports Tailoring (Liceo de Cagayan), Sacred Heart of Jesus Montessori School, EJ's Tailoring (Pilgrim Christian College), Mun of Talakag, Basoy Petroleum, PJT Sealcor Knights (Corpus Christi School), Rhilap'z Ballgame, Merry Child School, Cezar Ballers, Southern Philippines College, Dominique Chicken Trading (Indahag National High School), Bagong Lipunan / Star Ads, Prime Land Realty, and Kong Hua School.Martinez said they have allowed club-teams this year because many school-teams have yet to form their teams.One school which signified not to join this year is 2019 CdO champion Assumption Montessori School (AMS) of Balulang.AMS owner Jorey Alfaro confirmed they could not join the tournament this year as they want to abide by the order of the Department of Education not to allow sports activities for the schools."We are just right now following DepEd's guidelines of NO Outdoor competition. That is why there is no scheduled Palarong Pambansa for this year. Mahirap na ma sanction sa DepEd. It’s a big risk," Alfaro said.AMS has retained their long-time coach James Racines, one of the young outstanding coaches in the city.Racines has led AMS to four regional championships and one Division 2 National Championship.He worked as assistant coach for San Sebastian College-Recoletos (SSC-R) for a while and brought to the Stags Rommel Calahat who is now a stalwart for SSC-R in the ongoing NCAA.
Former AMS Jaguars forward Rommel Calahat is a product of NBTC Cagayan de Oro.The absence of AMS in this year's CdO NBTC elimination tournament has opened wide the competition among local teams.Despite of their absence, Alfaro maintained that they have kept their sports program.
"Our sports program has been there always even during the pandemic. Meaning we have enrolled varsities right now," he said.A total of 16 teams will compete here in the NBTC Regional qualifying tournament in December.The teams will come from Bislig City,, Surigao City, Butuan City, Bayugan City, Cagayan de Oro City, El Salvador City, Malaybalay City, Province of Bukidnon, Marawi City, Misamis Occidental, Pagadian City, Zamboanga Sibugay, Zamboanga del Sur, Zamboanga del Norte, Zamboanga City and Iligan City.Top team will qualify to the National Finals which will be held at the MOA arena next year.They will compete against International NBTC Teams and against champions from UAAP, NCAA, MMBL and other NCR Big Leagues High School Champions. (Jack Biantan)
Coaches and organizers meet at the office of Cagayan de Oro City Mayor Rolando Uy.