The Visayan brand of basketball debuted at the first day of the National Finals of the 2016 STI National Basketball tournament with the STI West Negros University mauling a fighting STI College Caloocan team 85 – 36. Since the start of the tournament last February, the Bacolod based dribblers has beaten 4 teams with an average of 70 points to validate their claim that they are one of the favorites in the tournament.
The STI West Negros University team started slowly and engaged the Caloocan dribblers to a defensive game in the first quarter. Wily point guard Renz Solomon dazzled the Caloocan dribblers and rang rings around them as he scored six of the 11 points of the WNU team. The first quarter score of 11 – 8 stood for awhile with both teams feeling each other, missing three pointers and lay-ins.
In the second quarter, Coach Dennis Tumayan finally fielded in the slithery John Nermal who scored nine of the 11 points of the WNU team. Nermal was unstoppable inside as he scored at will to give the WNU team a 22 – 19 lead with Mark Abin, Ariel Bautista and Jomar Salazar combining to produce 11 second quarter points, the most they had in the game.
By the third quarter, the STI West Negros team went full-steam as Nermal, Solomon and John Pastias combined for 25 of the WNU team’s 32 third quarter points to give them some separation from the Caloocan dribblers. Coach Karen Anne Salopong tried everything to stem the tide but unfortunately her boys were outmatched by their Visayan counterparts. STI WNU’s stingy defense and trapping made the Caloocan team turn the ball over and took bad shots as the WNU team had 21 steals that forced Caloocan to turn the ball over 36 times. The quarter ended with STI WNU safely ahead 54 – 28.
With the outcome already settled, the West Negros dribblers still went full steam in the fourth quarter and scored 31 points to pound their opponents to submission. The STI WNU team’s statline showed that they beat the Caloocan team in every category. STI WNU shot better 47% - 21 %, had more rebounds 55 – 47, more assists 16 – 6, steals 21 – 7, block shots 9 – 2 and turned the ball over 16 times fewer (20 -36) than STI College Caloocan. The West Negros team is a team with a mission this year, will they end up on top? Let’s see as the plot thickens in the next few days.
STI WEST NEGROS UNIVERSITY (85)
Nermal 21, Solomon 12, Belocura 10, Pastias 9, Sajo 8, Veloso 7, Villarias 7, Adjie 5, Vizcarra 4, Cadase 2, Galvez 0,
STI COLLEGE CALOOCAN (36)
Bautista 10, Perez 8, Abin 6, Laysico 6, Salazar 6, Aquino 0, Castillo 0, Flores 0, Lazaro 0, Maala 0, Sarmiento 0, Schmidt 0
Quarterscores: 11 – 8, 22 - 19, 54 – 28, 85 – 36