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SLU game vs UL kicks of 12 college team Z league

GAME ON. Tournament manager Edwin Humilde with coaches and athletic directors from Baguio, Benguet and Pangasinan including tournament director Danilo Soria during the launching of the Z League last Aug. 25. Some 12 teams from the two areas will be seeing action starting July 29 in a one round tournament to be staged in Baguio and La Trinidad and in Dagupan and Binalonan, Pangasinan. EHumilde captured photo

It’s game time this Saturday as the newest basketball league featuring college teams from Baguio and Benguet and Pangasinan start a nearly two months of competition.

It is a respite of sorts for many of the participating Baguio Benguet Educational Athletic League as they clash against teams from Pangasinan – Dagupan, Calasiao and Binalonan in the inaugural Z League at the University of Baguio gym.

Opening ceremonies is at 1030 AM with the parade of teams with their muses followed by the selection of the best muse. This will be followed with the three point shootout and slum dunk competitions, said tournament director Danilo Soria.

After three years of near inactivity, eight of Baguio and Benguet college basketball teams are ready to go back to action in a new league that will see them pitted against four Pangasinan teams, one of them is the recently crowned  R1 CHESAA champions.

Cordillera’s traditional powerhouse, UB’s Cardinals,  and seven of the 10 BBEAL schools will return to the hardcourt as they renew their rivalry but they will be joined by Pangasinan teams  in the single round robin event.

It will serve as a prelude for the resumption of the BBEAL which has been in the ice storage since 2020 when Baguio and the entire Luzon were declared under lockdown due to the Covid 19 pandemic.

UB is the defending BBEAL champion.

Slated to play are the University of the Cordilleras, Saint Louis University, the Philippine Military Academy, Baguio Central University, Baguio College of Technology and the Benguet schools of Cordillera Career Development College and Benguet State University.

Of the 10  BBEAL member schools,  the University of the Philippines and the Pines City College missing out in the upcoming event. The BBEAL opens on October with BSU as host.

The Pangasinan schools are the University of Luzon and R-1 CHESAA 2023 champion Lyceum Northwestern University in Dagupan, the Calasiao based Philippine College of Science and Technology and the latest entry, and the WCC Aeronautical and Technological College in Binalonan town.

The Guico owned WCC is actually the recent addition to the tournament. Guico is a Bolinao political clan whose members include Ramon, Jr., the current congressman of the province’s fifth district and whose son, Ramon III is the governor.

The Z League or the 2023 Pre-Season Inter-Collegiate Basketball League North of Luzon will also have games in Dagupan and all the participating teams will play or a 6-game event, said Soria, a former UB Cardinal, coach and UB athletic director and one of the remaining founders of the BBEAL.

Games will ensue after with four scheduled games. CCDC will play host on Sunday, while the PMA opens its doors to the teams on Tuesday.

SLU opens its bid against UL at 1230 PM followed by the BCT and WCC tiff, host UB facing PhilCST and for the curtain call is the battle of Cordilleras – CCDC vs UC.

It will be an all local event on  Sunday, with BSU against SLU, BCU facing UB, PMA  opposite CCDC and UC versus BCT.

Local teams are skated on Tuesday at the PMA with UC facing BSU at 4PM and the host going up against BCT at 530 Pigeon Lobien

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