San Beda opens PCCL title defense vs. San Sebastian

By Ivan Stewart Saldajeno

February 6, 2018, 5:14 pm

MANILA -- San Beda University opens its bid for a third consecutive Philippine Collegiate Champions League (PCCL) title against a familiar foe right at the start of the national quarterfinals on Thursday.

The reigning NCAA champion, which was one of the two teams named national co-champions during the last staging of the PCCL in 2015, would take on fellow NCAA squad San Sebastian College in one of the three games scheduled Thursday.

The Red Lions battle the Golden Stags, who entered through the NCR qualifiers, at 3 p.m., sandwiched in between two equally-compelling matches.

New-look De La Salle University, the UAAP runner-up, takes on Mindanao qualifier Holy Trinity College of General Santos City at 1 p.m., while reigning UAAP champion Ateneo de Manila University takes on Luzon qualifier Naga College Foundation in the nightcap at 5 p.m.

The other two teams in the Elite 8, NCAA runner-up Lyceum and Visayas qualifier University of the Visayas, will debut on Day 2 on Friday at 3 p.m., in between the San Beda-HTC tiff at 1 p.m. and the San Sebastian-La Salle battle at 5 p.m.

The Blue Eagles, Pirates, Green Lancers, and the Tigers are grouped together in Group A.

The Red Lions, Green Archers, Wildcats, and the Stags, on the other hand, make up Group B.

The Elite 8 will slug it out in an intra-group single round robin phase that will run until Sunday night. The quotient rule will be used in case of ties.

The top two teams from each group following the quarterfinal games will enter the knockout crossover semifinals on Monday with the survivors slugging it out in the national final on February 15.

The Elite 8 round will take place at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City, while the Final 4 and the championship game will be at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan City.

As announced by PCCL chairman Rey Gamboa and network representative Paolo Diaz during a pocket press conference at Il Terrazo, the games would be aired on cable TV channel Basketball TV with the semifinals and the final to be broadcast live.

All the games will also be streamed live while the organizers bared that the PCCL is now working on a mobile app for the streaming. (PNA)