JB ABL ‘School Wars’ to hold play-in tournament

What schools will emerge victorious in the JB ABL play-in tournament? (Jayphet Balbacal)

By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña

The JB Amateur Basketball League (JB ABL) Season III ‘School Wars’ will finally enter its last elimination phase and will set up a play-in tournament to determine the last participants for the upcoming semifinals.

Two categories in the ongoing prestigious tournament will have to undergo the play-in stage set to kick off this week at the University of San Agustin, Sambag, Jaro basketball gym.

For the college alumni category, the John B. Lacson Foundation Maritime University (JBLFMU) Dolphins will be squaring off against the University of San Agustin Golden Eagles for the last semifinal spot.

Both teams already met during the opening of the JB ABL Season III where the Dolphins outdueled the Golden Eagles in a tightly-contested affair, 74-70.

The former PRISAA kings will be led by main gunner Janjan Robejes, star point guard Nichol “Boykens” Gecangao, John Paul Sorongon, and Nico Capote.

Meanwhile, the Golden Eagles will be looking to bounce back and retaliate against the Dolphins to end their second-half campaign with a tournament winning streak.

Leading the pool of players for San Agustin are Skyld Corillo, Karlo Manajero, Jared Siao, John Stark Cercado, John Rhey Madulin, Jeard Ventura, and Dexter John Lacanaria.

The winner between JBLFMU and San Agustin will be joining the University of Iloilo Wildcats, Iloilo Doctor’s College (IDC) Medics, and the Western Institute of Technology (WIT) Tangerine in the college alumni Final Four.

Meanwhile, in the high school alumni division, two play-in games will be scheduled this Friday to determine the last two semifinalists.

The first play-in matchup will be played between the Colegio Del Sagrado Corazon De Jesus Spires against the De Paul College Blue Falcons.

Both teams will enter the game oozing with confidence after coming off respective wins during their last outings.

The Spires got the better of the Central Philippine University (CPU) Golden Lions, 65-53, while the Blue Falcons upset the second-seeded Saint Joseph School of Iloilo, 84-74.

Last but not the least, a high-octane battle between the Tiong San Blue Lions and the Angelicum School of Iloilo Blue Owls will take place.

The Blue Owls broke the hearts of Tiong San during their last meeting after superstar Inno Miclat buried the game-winning layup to give Angelicum the 103-101 win.

Will Tiong San recover and exact their revenge on Angelicum? Can Churchil Cartel and Michael Bucais match the firepower of Miclat and company? We will find out.

The two winners in the high school alumni play-in event will be joining the undefeated Hua Siong College of Iloilo Red Phoenix and the second-seeded St. Joseph School of Iloilo in the semifinals.