All the Philippine Navy Sea Lions wanted was a training ground designed to toughen them up in preparation for big time tournament.
But through their determination and hard work, the Go For Gold-backed Sea Lions ruled the King of Kings Basketball Challenge recently at the Taft Food by the Court.
The Sea Lions pulled off an upset win over Singson’s Demigods in a championship five-on-five streetball style of competition where the first team that reached 21 points in a pair of 15-minute games was declared winner.
With the victory, the Sea Lions earned the right to represent the country in the King of Kings Basketball Challenge in Shanghai, China on Aug. 8-11.
“Hindi namin in-expect na mananalo kami. From the start, our plan was to use the tournament to gain experience and as tuneup for the AFP-PNP-PCG Olympics,” said Philippine Navy Sea Lions coach Sn2 Valiant Pera PN.
“Bukod sa malalaki sila, most of them played in the big leagues. We just stuck sa game plan namin and tried our best,” added Pera.
“We are happy to support our men and women in the Armed Forces. Their sacrifice inspires us and we want to help them in our small way,” said “godfather” Jeremy Go who is vice president for marketing of Powerball Marketing & Logistics Corp., the prime mover behind Go For Gold Philippines.
Also supporting the team are top Philippine Navy Officials VADM Robert A. Empedrad (Flag Officer in Command, Philippine Navy), Commodore Adelius S. Bordado AFP (Commander, NIC), CDR Bernardo F. Manarpaac ( Director, DCSS) and LCDR Reimon T. Retaga PN (Officer In Charge, PN Sea Lions Team).
Team captain Lt Juan Tarroza, Sn2 Robert Faundo, Sn2 Kenneth Aljard, Sn2 Vincent Dalaten, Sn2 Rejeloed Cartel, Cpl Marvin Porquillo played superb ball in the five-team Globalhoops tourney with Asn Jeson Rey Cantos, Asn Chrismon Aquino and Asn Keneth De Vega.
Other members of the team are Asn Vinny Begaso, Asn Johnny Galabin, Asn Julius Fabian, Asn Rocky Antonares, Asn James Mangahas and Asn Dhon Reverente with PO3 Edmar Aronce as assistant coach.