The 2018 staging of the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas’ U-16 Pambansang Tatluhan saw one region continue its reign, while a new champion was crowned in the distaff’s side.
Region 4A (CALABARZON) won its third straight championship in the boys’ side, walloping Region 11 (Davao), 21-16.
With 1:52 left in the game, Ley Acosta knocked down the game-ending two-pointer with 1:52 left.
“Precisely, this is what we need for our grassroots program and it’s also mandated by FIBA. Malaki na itong 3×3 both globally and locally. We have been doing this for the last few years with two age brackets,” said SBP deputy executive director Bernie Atienza.
The champions consisted of Acosta and Jan Rae Atienza and Jan Derick Villarez. Coaching the team was Oliver Bunyi.
The John Rey Pasaol-led Region 11 bagged silver, while NCR North finished in third place.
The tournament was backed by TNT, Nike, Maynilad, Gatorade, Sky Freight, Transway Hotel Group, and Agent Snake Shoe Solution.
“TNT is there to support the SBP in reaching out to the regions and finding talent as well. This is a platform for them to be recognized and eventually be recruited,” said SMART Sports head Epok Quimpo.
In the girls’ side, Region 10 blew past Region 6, 16-6.
The troika of Cheska Apag, Reign Zareno, and Aloha Betanio dominated the entire competition.
Pangasinan finished in third place.
“I’m surprised personally sa women’s. Dati we have scouts for the men’s pero during the weekend, ang daming women’s coaches na dumating to scout,” added Atienza.
And the SBP hopes that the nationals will continue to grow in the coming years in order for the country to perform at the highest of stages in the 3×3 scene.
“We have to start somewhere. Dito tayo nagsisimula e and ngayon pa lang nare-realize ng mga tao yung importance of three-on-three basketball,” expressed Quimpo. “Ngayon, nakikita nila nasa mall, nasa TV, at sa internet. Yun yung kagandahan nito, nakikita nila na may opportunity dito for the other players.”
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