THE CEBU Niños have officially signed as an MPBL expansion squad, and immediately the team gave a glimpse of what to expect from the “basketball haven of the South.”
Inside the Cebu City Archdiocese Gym, two familiar faces were acting of leaders of this young squad.
Jercules Tangkay, who played for Sta. Lucia and Welcoat in the PBA, and former Sta. Lucia and Coca-Cola Tiger Cesar Catli were active during the scrimmage and from the looks of it, the two will serve as the anchors of this team that is much-awaited by Visayan fans.
Coaching the Niños is Gilbert Castillo, another familiar fixture in the local basketball scene.
Castillo led the Letran Knights to the NCAA title in 1992, which served as his ticket to moving up to the pros to become part of the San Miguel squad.
Also joining the squad is ramp model Vince Canizares.
The Niños were the fourth team to join in the league’s expansion in Visayas and Mindanao after the Davao Occidental Tigers, the Zamboanga Valientes and the General Santos City Warriors.
Satar Macantal, assistant commissioner of the MPBL, facilitated the signing of documents attended by team owner Pio Castillo and team manager Mark Castillo.
The team is currently holding tryouts, which started last Saturday. The session will have its final stage on Friday before some of the selected players will go to Manila to join another set of tryouts there.