NCRUCLAA: Reuniting the force
Aiming to develop a bigger and stronger league, former National Capital Region Athletic Association (NCRAA) and Universities and Colleges of Luzon Athletic Association (UCLAA) merged to form the National Capital Region Universities and Colleges of Luzon Athletic Association (NCRUCLAA) composed of 16 teams under its wing, launching its opening ceremony at the Cuneta Astrodome in Pasay City, January 17.
Onto the next level
Watching the opening game from the sidelines, newly-elected NCRUCLAA President, Asian Institute of Maritime Studies (AIMS) Athletic Director and School Registrar Engr. Ted Cada stated that the union of the two leagues aims to become the third successful collegiate sporting event next to University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) and National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), respectively.
With the help of the existing board of directors and members of the two said leagues, they were able to successfully make the team up happen due to the lack of teams competing in NCRAA and UCLAA. He also shared that they already united the leagues last year, but the tournament was only pushed through this year.
The promising venture
Capping off 2016 with hopes for progress as a solid team after their numerous exhibition games, head coach Arnold Oliveros continues to design game plans for his team as they jump into another league that will help them develop their team’s chemistry. Coach Oli shared that he knows that most of the competing teams are strong, which pushes them to be more ready every game and to always have their eyes on the prize.
The Patriot cagers completed their training early in the morning before the opening day and when asked about their preparations, “So far naman sa trainings namin [pinaghahandaan] especially ‘yong strengthening and conditioning. Kailangan lang ibigay nila ‘yong best nila, 100% every game para manalo kami,” said coach Oli.
Moreover, coach Oli is also conditioning the Patriots to be mentally ready and set to face the other teams. He also mentioned that hardships within the team were minimized as they have already overcome the difficulties. As this new quest commences, “Experience-wise mage-gain talaga ‘yan. Maganda ‘tong coverage na ‘to. Mago-grow [pa] kami as a team,” coach Oli concluded.
As the Patriots step into the limelight with this exposure, the said tournament is expected to bring morale for the school and the team. With the vast number of participants, the event will acquire a bigger crowd as the student-athletes will not just compete to win, but also attain new experiences, develop camaraderie, and demonstrate sportsmanship.
As Dr, Arlene Abuid-Paderanga, President of AIMS expressed in her opening remarks, “The real essence of sportsmanship is falling under grace … you are always at your best.”
The Patriots will be seen in action almost every Monday until March as the league is televised on BTV and Solar Sports.