THE first-ever professional basketball league in the south, the Pilipinas VisMin Super Cup, welcomed another team in the MJAS Zenith-Talisay City Aquastars during a press conference on Thursday afternoon, February 4, at the San Remegio Pensionne Suites.
Bannered by ex-pro Paolo Hubalde and local aces Patrick Jan Cabahug, Darrell Shane Menina, Kevin Villafranca, Lugie Cuyos, Joshua dela Cerna and Tristan Albina, Talisay City is the fourth team in the Visayas division, joining the likes of ARQ Builders-Lapu-Lapu City, KCS-Mandaue City and XUR Homes Realty-Eastern Samar.
"Una sa tanan, magpasalamat ko sa LGU sa Talisay City kay ge supportaan among team MJAS-ZENITH ug excited nako muduwa para sa ako hometown og dream come true pd ni nako para ma represent sa right way og ma proud sad ang mga taga Talisaynon," said Menina, a former member of the Cesafi Mythical Five squad.
Coached by Aldrin Morante, the rest of the team is composed of Egie Boy Mojica, Val Acuña, Lord Casajeros, Jaymar Gimpaya, Allan Santos and Steven Cudal.
Finally given accreditation by the Games and Amusement Board (GAB) headed by Baham Mitra, the VisMin Super Cup now has professional status, thereby allowing it to stage a tournament, which is slated to tip off on April 9, tentatively at the Cebu Coliseum.
Present at the press conference were Talisay City Aquastars officials Wilson Villanueva, Atty. Marc Bas, Jeaneth Villagonzalo and Deej Villanueva. Also there were league officials led by ambassador Dondon Hontiveros, secretary general Chelito Caro and technical head, Rey Cañete.
"This is something we look forward to especially after what we all went through last year," said Hontiveros. "It's challenging but it's something we would be proud of 10 years from now because we made it happen."
Caro said teams in the Visayas would compete in a double round-robin with the top two advancing to the semifinals. The lower-ranked teams would then duke it out for the remaining semis tickets. The semifinal round would be knockout games.