By Armie B. Gunay
NAGA CITY --- City Mayor John Bongat expressed elation and great pride after the Naga College Foundation Tigers Basketball team took home the championship in the recently concluded 2017 Luzon Champions of the Philippine Collegiate Champions League.
Winner of the Naga City 2017 Charter Intercollegiate Basketball Tournament, the NCF Tigers will represent not only Naga City but the entire Luzon in the national collegiate champions league.
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Last November 15-18 at the University of Nueva Caceres Sports Palace, the NCF Tigers downed Perpetual Help System of Laguna (98-74) to clinch the Southern Luzon Finals of the Philippine Collegiate Champions League (PCCL).
On November 30, 2017, Dagupan City - The Naga College Foundation (NCF) Tigers held their ground halting a comeback by the Lyceum Northwestern University (LNU) Dukes (79-75) to become the kings of the Philippine Collegiate Champions League (PCCL) Luzon Leg at the LNU Gymnasium in Dagupan City.
With the Luzonwide (outside the National Capital Region) championship, the Naga College Foundation Tigers will now test their mettle come February 2018 against the more popular and seasoned teams of UAAP and NCAA champions and runners-up, as well as champion teams from the Visayas and Mindanao.
“Dakulang onra ini na pigtao ninda sa govierno local kan Ciudad nin Naga,” Bongat shared in an interview.
The mayor, together with other city officials and the employees at city hall gave honor and recognition to the achievement of the team during the flag raising ceremony at the city hall.
As a gesture of support, the city government assured the team of financial assistance to further trainings and meet other needs in sports, including school scholarships and allowances.
Engr. Mario Villanueva, the NCF President, also expressed his pleasure that NCF Tigers made it to the Elite 8 or Magic 8— the best of all the colleges’ basketball team out of the 32 leagues and other 200 collegiate teams in the country.
NCF Tigers is looking forward to their game in February 2018 against NCR champions Ateneo de Manila, San Beda, De La Salle, and Lyceum, and those from Visayas and Mindanao.
Meanwhile, Mayor Bongat expressed optimism that the city will be granted the privilege to host the upcoming Country Wide Basketball League (CWBL), He said hosting prestigious games will help in the promotion of sports among local athletes as well as the city as an ideal venue for big-time events.