THE Negros Occidental elementary boys basketball team are gearing up for their title defense in the 2019 Western Visayas Regional Athletic Association (WVRAA) 2019, which will start today in Roxas City, Capiz.
Head coach Renato Callora Jr. said that, while they like their chances in the meet that serve as the qualifier for the 2019 Palarong Pambansa, they are still wary of their opponents, particularly lloilo and Capiz.
“So far so good naman ang preparation ng team namin. We like our chances,” Callora said. “Iloilo remains the team to beat for us as always but we also cannot discount on Capiz because they are the host.”
“These two teams ang gina–expectar namon nga mag-challenge gid samon title defense but ang iban nga team nag-prepare man so hindi pwede ibaliwala sila namon,” he added.
Leading the way for the Negros elementary boys squad were Bacolod Tay Tung High School standouts Ronn Bedonia, Alexander Dingcong, Vince Hugo, Carl Justine Jalea, Emanuel Salvio, Philippe Sison, Toni Siglos, Dave Recodo and Kian James Ramos.
Callora have also tapped the services of three players namely Burj Lapuos and Luke Zapata from St. John’s Institute and Fourth Teruel from University of St. La Salle-Bacolod.
Meanwhile, Negros Occidental were also the defending champion 3×3 basketball, which is to be represented by Andy Villaver, Ralph Cagalawan, Kent Esparagoza and Rommel Hechanova.
NLEX Road Warriors center Paul Asi Taulava is contemplating on retiring from professional basketball as he enters his 20th year in the league in the 2019 Honda PBA Philippine Cup.
The 45-year-old Taulava said that he has no regret at how his PBA career turned out where he relished winning his only PBA title in 2003 and endured a number of runner-up finishes and survived several controversies.
“It’s been a great 20 years. A lot of great memories, a lot of bad memories and I won’t turn it for the world,” said Taulava, who had stops with TNT KaTropa, Coca Cola Tigers, Meralco Bolts, Air 21 Express and the Road Warriors.
Taulava, who is averaging 2.7 points and 2.7 rebounds in three games this conference, became the fourth player in PBA history to play a least 20 seasons this year joining Robert Jaworski, Ramon Fernandez and Abet Guidaben.
The three PBA Hall of Famers played during the PBA’s inaugural season in 1975. Fernandez called it quits in 1994, Guidaben ended his career in 1995 and Jaworski appeared in his final season in 1998.
“Retirement is not far behind. It’s on its way, the door is getting closer,” said Taulava, who signed a two-year contract extension with the Road Warriors during the offseason./PN