By Adrian Stewart Co
Negros Muscovados is set for its debut in the Chooks-To-Go Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League (MPBL) Invitational being planned for early December at a venue still to be determined.
According to Muscovados head coach Rolando Aledron Jr., the pocket tournament will be a good exposure for the MPBL debutant ahead of the Mumbaki Cup by June 2022.
“The team needs the exposure we can get from this MPBL Invitational. Despite playing with a local lineup, we will definitely give our best each game to reach the playoffs,” Aledron said.
“The players were very excited to go back to training. It has been long since we last had a practice so, when everything is settled, the coaches will work on the conditioning of the players,” he added.
Bannering the Muscuvados squad are guards Francis John Parreño, Jaycee Adjei, Rolly Jaca, Jeric Adorio, and Jafet Claridad, all from Bacolod City; Bill Deolingo from Cadiz City; and Jonathan Gantalao Jr. from Canlaon City.
Also in the team are forwards Patrick Dave Yulo from Binalbagan, Ritcher Santillan from Sagay City, and Christopher Menguez from Bacolod City. The team’s lone center so far is Janus Calma from Barangay Mansilingan in Bacolod City.
Aside from Aledron, among the members of the Muscovados coaching staff are Ateneo de Iloilo basketball team mentor Jophil Cercado, Edmundo Sibaya, Ireneo Morales, and Jay R Divinagracia.
“The team decided to give opportunities to local players for now since the team owners believe that there are many talented ballers here in Negros and they are just waiting for the right opportunity to showcase their talents,” Cercado said.
Muscovados will be one of the 13 teams in the invitational aside from Bacolod Master Sardines, Davao, Laguna, Caloocan, Sarangani, Bicol, Rizal, Nueva Ecija, Imus, Makati, General Santos, and Marikina.
The Chooks-To-Go MPBL Invitational will use a closed-circuit system instead of a bubble type while three areas in Caloocan City, Antipolo City and Santa Rosa, Laguna were being eyed for the venue of the matches./ASC, WDJ