Tuesday, June 23, 2015

NCAA season 91 set to engineer sports excellence for the next decade

The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) opens its 91st season with the much awaited basketball competition starting with a pair of explosive games featuring reigning five-peat champion San Beda and host Mapua and last year’s first and second runners up Arellano University and Jose Rizal University on Saturday at the MOA Arena in Pasay City.


The Lions, who are gunning for an unprecedented sixth straight crown, tangle with the vastly improved Cardinals at 2 p.m. while the new-look Chiefs and the Bombers colliding in the main game at 4 p.m.

Mapua CEO and NCAA president Dr. Reynaldo Vea said both games will be preceded by an opening ceremony centered on this season’s theme:  “NCAA: Engineered for Sports Excellence in the New Decade.”

“We’re expecting a more exciting NCAA season not just in basketball but in other sports as well,” said Vea during the event launch at the Coral Ballroom of the MOA Arena in Pasay City yesterday.

The NCAA will also formally welcome Emilio Aguinaldo College and Lyceum as its newest regular members as well as its reunion with television giant ABS-CBN as its official broadcasting partner for the next decade.

Vea also announced that the league has upgraded the status of the Generals and the Pirates this year after meeting all the requirements for compete regular status.

“EAC and Lyceum are now regular members of the NCAA starting this season,” he said. EAC and Lyceum thus joined Arellano University, which was also accepted two years ago as a regular, as the newest members of the 10-school strong league that is also comprised of Mapua, San Beda, Jose Rizal, Perpetual Help, Letran, College of St. Benilde and San Sebastian.

“Together, ABS-CBN and the NCAA seek to engineer sports excellence in the new decade enhancing the passion and capabilities of the Filipino youth.  We will seek to achieve greater heights and bigger accomplishments as we journey to the NCAA’s first centennial,” ABS-CBN Head for Integrated Sports, Dino Laurena, said, for his part, alongside Vea.

Management Committee chairman Melchor Divina of Mapua said the league has re-scheduled its games from Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays to Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays with a total of seven seniors games to be played every week. ABS-CBN will be NCAA’s media partner for the next ten years starting this 91st season.

Games will be shown on ABS-CBN Sports + Action live on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. The Arena in San Juan City will host majority of the elimination round games with the marquee matches set at the MOA Arena.

San Beda College, the reigning seniors basketball champion, is out to extend its dynastic reign to six seasons while College of Saint Benilde defends its general championship after emerging the overall champion last season.

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