SM Sports takes over MMBL high school caging
by rick olivares
SM Sports Development has come in as principal sponsor for the National Basketball Training Center (NBTC) and the Metro Manila Basketball League (MMBL).
Both programs are grassroots basketball development leagues for high schools with the NBTC concentrated in the provinces while the MMBL features primarily schools in Metro Manila.
"SM saw how the NBTC has played a major role in grassroots basketball development throughout the country,” said Christian Jan “CJ” Suarez, the former world champion bowler who is now the Sports Development Head of SM Sports. “When Seaoil let go of their sponsorship, we decided to pick up the baton."
The NBTC is now on its ninth year while the MMBL, the country’s third oldest high school competition is on its 33rd year. The 33rd MMBL takes place from November 2015 up to January 2016 and involves 40 schools from the Metro Manila area that are fielded a total of 76 teams.
“We have five core sports in SM Sports,” clarified Suarez who as a professional bowler last competed in the 2006 Asian Games in Qatar. “That’s tenpin bowling, speed skating, figure skating, ice hockey, and basketball."
“Right now, it’s all about giving back to sports that has been good to me. We’re looking for ways to help others as well.”
During the MMBL’s opening weekend held last November 7 and 8 at the San Beda Gym #1, NU-A defeated UST-A 76-67, Lyceum defeated Ateneo 75-67, SBIS trounced Arellano-B 68-58, UST crushed SJCS-A 67-53, Perpetual Help bowled over SJCS-B 67-53 while EDSCI mowed down San Beda-C 86-67.
For the matches played at San Beda Gym #2, defending champions Chiang Kai Shek topped Arellano-A 57-47. NCAA Juniors champs San Beda-A dispatched Xavier-A 70-53, San Beda-B squeaked past CKSC-B 57-55, EAC-ICA-A outlast DLSAU-A 79-68, San Beda-D walloped OLOPSCI 58-49, and MPS outraced Adamson-A, 95-83.