Tourney’s meager success
By Jesus A. Garcia, Jr.
DESPITE the lack of excitement during the elimination round and the quarterfinals, the on-going PRISAA (Private Schools Athletic Association) Pangasinan-Dagupan City Inter-Collegiate Basketball Invitational Tournament has been organized with “flying colors.”
Ten teams entered the tourney, and as might have been expected, the four semifinalists are the same teams last year lead by the University of Luzon (UL) Golden Tigers which topped the A division during the qualifying round, defending champions University of Pangasinan (UPang) Webczars, Lyceum Northwestern University (LNU) Dukes and the AIE-C College Eagles. These four defeated the six non-qualifier squads all in double figures. Mismatched ‘ika nga ang naging labanan.
Like what happened last year, the three, UL, UPang and LNU were the dominant forces of the league. And as the observers predicted—the low-rated seven teams battled only for the fourth and last slot for the semis.
Meanwhile, six of the ten head coaches addressed their gripes about officiating to the management committee headed by Seato Gonomil, asking for quality and fair officiating by the arbiters particularly in the coming semis and ready to start tomorrow.
The hardworking Gonomil said the issues were resolved last Thursday during his meetings with the coaches involved.
And like the elimination round that saw the Webczars narrowly escaping a heartbreaking overtime victory, spectators are anticipating another blockbuster match, and again expectedly to be dominated by LNU and the UL throngs.
And this is the flank where the Webczars are weak. They are always outnumbered and not much support from the fans.
But UPang’s head coach Angel Gumarang is confident. Deriving from a favorite marine slogan “we could be outnumbered but never be outfought,” he said.
Hopefully, the organizers next year will invite some more prominent colleges in the province like in the cities of Alaminos, San Carlos and Urdaneta to add color and glamour of the beautiful league.
“There’s no harm in trying,” as said by my town mate Ferdinand Mangonon, a former varsity player.
And if that happens, it will be a “battle royal,” no question about it.
Whoever emerges the champion, we have no doubt and they are really the kings in Pangasinan’s caging among colleges.