History awaits Phl basketball
Mission accomplished for SMS at Chooks-to-Go SBP 3X3 event
What a weekend it was indeed for Cebu cagedom. Check that. Make that Philippine basketball, the 3X3 sector to be exact. After two days of action at the Chooks-to-Go SBP 3X3 Basketball Festival held at Sisters of Mary School Boystown and Girlstown, Phl will most likely set the record for the most number of 3X3 games played in a tournament registered, recorded and logged on to the FIBA 3X3 planet, the FIBA’s systems-based online program that keeps track of all 3X3 activities around the globe and that ranks countries on a points system.
On Saturday, 1,111 boys broken into 277 teams played a total of 444 games at the 50 half-courts of SMS- Boystown in Minglanilla. It was the girls’ turn on Sunday when 1,588 girls played 3X3 basketball at the 36 half-courts of SMSGirlstown in Talisay. The girls were spread to 397 teams and played a total of 508 games.
With this outcome, the historical event had a combined 3,036 participants, shattering the previous FIBA-record of 1,898.
"When we were just in the planning stages of the event, we expected that we will break the record. But we did not expect that it would be by a wide margin," shared Chooksto-Go president Ronald Mascariñas.
"Girlstown made sure that the record will be owned by the country and the country should be forever grateful to them," added the amiable executive.
Now, the waiting game begins for Chooks-to-Go and SBP as FIBA will look through the documents and verify if the record has been set.
"Now, we await FIBA 3X3. The SBP is currently in the process of sending over the proper documentation to FIBA's offices. We are confident that we have done everything right and, more importantly, get the points to qualify for the Olympics," said Mascariñas. "And we are proposing to make this a yearly event."
Mascariñas stressed that this was being done for love of country. "We at Chooks-to-Go are really elated with the turnout. But this victory is not ours alone. It's the country's achievement," beamed Mascariñas. "I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to the SBP and the sisters from SMS for making all of this possible."
The SBP also expressed its sincerest gratitude to SMS for opening its doors to them.
"I'll put some religious context to this nung sinabi kong divine intervention, divine providence ito. God works in mysterious ways kasi by accident lang nalaman ng SBP na may ganitong klaseng number of courts. And we're glad that we're making history with these young kids," said SBP executive director Sonny Barrios. "It's very overwhelming and heartwarming that we got into this partnership with Chooks-to-Go and the Sisters of Mary nuns para magawa natin ito ng samasama."
As of January 14 FIBA 3X3 rankings, the Philippines ranked 55th in men’s division, 54th in the women’s division, 55th in Under 18 Men and 36th in Under 18 Women. The country’s ranking is expected to rise with the staging of the weekend’s 3X3 games.
The men and women behind the world record attempt for the biggest 3X3 basketball event have all the reasons to smile after the highly successful Chooks-to-Go SBP 3X3 Festival at the Sisters of Mary School-Boystown and Girlstown campuses over the weekend.