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November to Remember: PCCL 2014 Primer



Not too long ago, April this year to be exact, the men’s collegiate basketball officially started with the Premiere Cup. This year’s summer tournament was the biggest, and arguably the best, pre-season tournament ever staged since it started. It featured 21 teams including the under-18 national basketball team and teams from Cebu and General Santos were featured in the two month long tournament. After all the smoke had cleared, it was the De La Salle University Green Archers who came out on top of the 21-team field by beating the San Beda Red Lions in a back-and-forth game to win the Premiere Cup.

Coinciding with the Premiere Cup was the Father Martin’s Summer Cup. A tournament that was won by the University of Perpetual Help Delta Altas in a UAAP vs. NCAA finals against the University of Santo Tomas Growling Tigers.

Then came the start of the local collegiate leagues. Over 250 schools split into more than 20 leagues started their regular seasons. The majors, as most of the pundits call them, closed out their basketball seasons with the National University Bulldogs winning the UAAP, the San Beda Red Lions winning a historic 5-peat for the NCAA, and the SouthWestern University Cobras claiming the CESAFI crown after a grueling 5-game series.

Now here we are. The final chapter for this year’s men’s collegiate basketball championship.

The country’s insatiable thirst for crowning a one true collegiate basketball champion gave birth to the CCL back in 2002. The tournament format though has changed year-in and year-out. The initial format of the tournament back in 2002 was a sudden death tournament with the finals being a best-of-3 encounter. The format was then changed to a complicated series of seedings wherein the champions from the UAAP, NCAA, and CESAFI were automatically seeded in the Final Four. The 4th seed was contested in a tournament wherein teams from the UAAP, NCAA, and CESAFI were automatically seeded in various rounds of the tournament while the schools from the other leagues duke it out in the early stages. (Yes it was a clusterfuck of a format)

During the 11 times this tournament was held, the UAAP has dominated the league by winning the national collegiate basketball championship 10 times. The sole loss of a UAAP team came from the 2011 PCCL tournament when the San Sebastian College-Recoletos Stags, led by the Pinatubo trio of Calvin Abueva, Ian Sangalang, and Ronald Pascual, defeated the Ateneo Blue Eagles.

In an interesting statistic, the UAAP also dominated the tournament with the most entries in the final four of the PCCL as seen in this chart:

PCCL F4 Chart

This year, the PCCL reformatted the structure of the tournament into this:

The Elite Eight are split into two groups:

UAAP ChampionsNational UniversityNCAA ChampionsSan Beda College
NCAA 2nd PlaceArellano UniversityUAAP 2nd PlaceFar Eastern University
CESAFI 2nd PlaceUniversity of San CarlosCESAFI ChampionsSouthWestern University
Luzon-Metro Manila ChampionDe La Salle UniversityVisayas-Mindanao ChampionUniversity of Visayas


Teams from Group A face-off against the teams from Group B and vice-versa. The Top 2 teams from each group advance to the best-of-3 finals while the 2nd place teams compete in a sudden death 3rd place game.

In a ruling by the Philippine Collegiate Champion’s League organizers, it was deemed that the schools can field players from their training pool teams since most of the schools have been gutted by either the PBA or the PBA D-League. Technically, some of the schools are previewing their men’s basketball teams for next season. So the PCCL this year is like a dessert and an appetizer at the same time!

Without further ado, let’s take a look at all 8 schools that have qualified for the final canto of this year’s collegiate basketball season.

 2014 Philippines Collegiate Champions League Primer

DLSUUV pccl 2014


1 Comment
  • missblue17

    I checked all of the eight universities/colleges’ “predictions” and as what I’ve noticed, BIAS talaga yung views against the Cebu/Visayas schools. Well, let’s wait and see. As of this writing, Group A’s USC (2-1) is at 2nd place (only behind DLSU’s 2-0) while Group B’s UV (2-1) is at 1st place (PREDICTIONS FOR BOTH TEAMS ARE: USC AT 1-3 WHILE UV AT 0-4). Well well well, it’s just PREDICTIONS anyway. Go Cebu/Visayas Teams! Go USC! 🙂

Mixed Martial Arts

Rene Catalan continues rampage with TKO win



Rene Catalan continues to turn critics into believers

Filipino fighter Rene Catalan made his sixth appearance inside the ONE Championship cage at ONE: Kings of Courage, held at the Jakarta Convention Center in Indonesia, Saturday evening. He faced 21-year-old Chinese athlete Peng Xue Wen in the opening main card bout, and leaned on his elite wushu skills to stop the young star at the 4:22 mark of the second round.

The victory improves Catalan’s record to 4-2 (1 NC), extends his winning streak to four, and gives him the first TKO stoppage of his martial arts career, as he bids to climb the strawweight ladder in search of the ONE Strawweight World Championship.

“The Challenger” came out in the southpaw stance to open the bout, throwing big hooks and a head kick that narrowly missed as he established the center of the cage from the start of the contest.

The Filipino landed a host of powerful strikes, including a perfectly-placed uppercut and a melee of punishing leg kicks, but Peng’s conditioning and composure kept him in the match as he looked to stand and trade with the man 18 years his elder.

Catalan picked up where he left off when the bout resumed in the second round, this time operating out of the orthodox stance, landing more leg kicks and continuing to deny Peng any space to work.

Despite his dominance on the feet, there was a brief moment of concern for the Filipino on the mat when he jumped into the Chinese wrestler’s guard mid-way through the second round, and immediately found himself in a triangle choke. But the Filipino kept his composure and managed to work himself free.

Once the fighters returned to their feet, Catalan poured on the pressure in search of a finish, and he got it with just 38 seconds remaining in the stanza.

“The Challenger” scored big with a liver shot, then unloaded a fierce flurry of punches that forced Peng onto his back foot. Another shot forced Peng to the mat, where a salvo of ground and pound from Catalan eventually forced the TKO stoppage as referee Olivier Coste stepped in to halt the contest.

Photo, story, and video from ONE Championship

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Gelo Alolino regrets Phoenix’s failure to close out Hotshots



Photo by PBA Images

Gelo Alolino had his best game for the Phoenix Fuel Masters on Saturday night at the Cuneta Astrodome with 19 points, eclipsing his previous career-high of 16 markers which he made last May 21, 2017 in a loss to the Mahindra Floodbuster.

But his achievement won’t be too memorable, as it went for naught following a 91-97 defeat at the hands of Paul Lee and the Magnolia Hotshots, who have now collected their third straight victory.

For the second overall pick in the regular 2016 Rookie Draft, it was all because of their failure to sustain momentum up until the game’s final buzzer.

“Sayang, nandun na. We felt na sa amin na nung dulo kaso lang ganun talaga,” rued the 24-year-old sophomore after the match, where he shot an excellent 7-of-10 from the floor.

“Breaks of the game napunta sa kabila.”

Phoenix were in contention all throughout the match. In fact, they were even ahead, 89-84, with just three minutes left to play. But the Hotshots’ comeback skills were unleashed, leading to the narrow win.

“Siyempre kami lahat nasayangan. Maganda naman yung team effort talaga namin,” admitted the 6-foot floor general of their end-game collapse, which wasted their efforts in assists (21) and on defense, where they forced Magnolia to 21 turnovers.

“Kami as players talagang gusto namin bumawi coming from a loss last game sa Rain or Shine.

The Fuel Masters have now lost their second straight outing and have dropped to 2-3. And for Alolino, all they have to do is learn as much as they can from this loss, especially now that they are about to face the Barangay Ginebra San Miguel next.

“Yun nga. Medyo masakit para sa’min ‘to,” admitted the National University product.

“All we have to do is magviview ulit kami ng tape para makita kung saan kami mas pwede mag-improve as a team and bawat isa — including me.”

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Glenn Khobuntin repays Ricky Dandan’s trust with end-game heroics



FILE Photo from PBA Images

Glenn Khobuntin can finally say that he had himself a moment in the pro ranks

The National University alumnus proved his worth for the Kia Picanto, scoring his team’s final six points to steer the often-ridiculed club to their first win after a historic 16-game skid, at the expense of the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters, 98-94.

“I knew he would. I knew he would,” lauded Kia head coach Ricky Dandan of the takeover by the six-foot-four forward.

“It was a blessing he didn’t play for the first two quarters because he [came in] fresh at gigil na gigil.”

Khobuntin finished with 11 markers on 5-of-7 shooting — the best game he’s had so far, not because of the numbers he posted but with the way he made them. But the three-year pro does not want to take the spotlight all onto himself.

“Hindi lang din naman ako e, kami ding lahat e,” the 26-year-old shared. “Siguro kumbaga nagka-opportunity lang, napunta sa akin yung bola kasi yun yung nasa scheme ng play so ayun.

“Thankful lang ako na-hit ko yung mga na-design na plays.”

However, the third-year pro admitted that he had been frightened during the game’s final stretch, as Rain or Shine managed to impose a serious threat by coming back from a seven-point deficit, 94-96, with just less than 22 ticks left to play.

“Kinakabahan ako kasi two minutes pa rin yun e tapos Rain or Shine yung kalaban namin,” the native of Cagayan de Oro said. “Nakita ko nakakabalik sila. Thankful lang naman ako na yung game napunta sa amin, at least natapos yung losing streak namin.”

But more than the end of their months-long slump, what Khobuntin is grateful for is the trust given to him by Dandan, who fielded him as a starter in the second half after sitting out the entirety of the first 24 minutes.

“Nag-decide siya na ako yung i-start niya so thankful ako kasi nagtiwala siya sa akin.”

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Justin Brownlee, Alab lock down Knights for fifth win



Paying a visit to Indonesia for the first time this season, Tanduay Alab Pilipinas needed time to figure the CLS Knights out before stifling the hosts in the final frame to take a 92-87 road win, Saturday evening at the GOR CLS Kertajaya in Indonesia.

This is Alab’s second straight win after losing to the Singapore Slingers last January 10.

With the win, the Philippine-based club team lifts its slate to 5-4 for solo fourth. CLS, on the other hand, dropped to 1-7 — just half a game ahead of the cellar-dwelling Formosa Dreamers.

Justin Brownlee displayed his all-around brilliance in the game, leading Alab with 36 points on 15-for-24 shooting to go along with eight rebounds, seven assists, and three steals.

But Alab’s bench could not sustain the effort of the starters, which meant the team was clinging to a two-point lead with 7:06 remaining.

Needing a spark, 40-year-old sniper Dondon Hontiveros provided for Alab, knocking down a triple that proved to be the starting point 14-2 Alab run. A jumper by Bobby Ray Parks, Jr. with 2:57 left capped the rally and gave Alab an 87-73 lead.

Hontiveros scored five of the eight Alab bench points. Fortunately for Alab, Renaldo Balkman and Bobby Ray Parks, Jr. were on point. The former tallying a double-double with 17 points and 13 rebounds, while Alab’s skipper had 14 points, four assists, two rebounds, two steals, and two blocks.

Coach Jimmy Alapag fielded his bench afterwards, but they let the quintet of Brian Williams, Mario Wuysang, Arif Hidayat, Decorey Jones, and Sandy Kurniawan slice the lead to as low as four points. Then free throws by Oping Sumalinog with eight ticks left put CLS away for good.

Williams paced CLS with 22 points and 14 rebounds while Kurniawan added 19 markers. Indonesian legend Wuysang had 17 points and six rebounds in the loss.

Alab ends its road trip on Sunday, January 28, when it takes on the Saigon Heat at the CIS Arena in Ho Chi Minh City.

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