Central Luzon female cagers head to semis

Justin Jones Notarte
Central Luzon is set to face the defending champion of of girls secondary basketball, the National Capital Region

SWIFT DRIVE. Central Luzon’s Joyce Ramirez (center) breaks the defense of her guard. Photo by Harley Aglosolos/Rappler

TAGUM CITY, Philippines – The brave-hearted female cagers from Caraga is nothing compared to the might possessed by the players of Central Luzon as they reigned in the quarter finals of girls secondary basketball, 68-56, on Thursday, May 7, at St. Mary’s College Mother Ignacia Multi-Purpose Gym.

After controlling the third game of the quarter finals, Central Luzon advances to the semi-finals to face the 2014 Palarong Pambansa defending champion, the National Capital Region (NCR).

The Central Luzon camp remained unbeaten after their 3 wins against Ilocos Region, Zamboanga Peninsula, and Northern Mindanao.

Central Luzon’s standing ‘Big 5’ – Joyce Ramirez, Reynalene Ferrer, Patricia Lopez, Lea Villegas and Reah Badilla – led their team to execute the plays, move the ball, and make the trap which set the tension inside the court, leading Caraga with null during the last 3 minutes of the first half.

Even with their best effort, Caraga failed to resist the defense of Central Luzon, forcing them to commit turnovers in the 3rd and 4th quarter.

“Defense! Defense! Defense!” shouted the Caraga fans holding on to their last hope of coming back and stealing the lead.

But Central Luzon left no room for revenge, as they intensified their offense pinning numerous fast breaks and jump shots.

The rampage of Central Luzon shocked the Caraga crowd further as the jampacked duo of Ramirez and Ferrer took advantage of their height – conquering the low post area which made Central Luzon dominant with rebounds.

Maganda talaga iyong laro ng aking players kaso lang slow lang talaga ang kanilang start,” Central Luzon Head Coach Noel Moyco stressed. ( My players had a good game but they just started slow.)

Moyco said his team’s defense is weak and needs improvement for their next match against NCR on Friday, May 8.

The ongoing Palarong Pambansa is the largest grassroots sporting event in the Philippines that aims to develop the potentials of the youth to become responsible and globally-competitive citizens. – Rappler.com

Justin Jones Notarte, a Grade 9 student from La Filipina National High School, Tagum City, won 2nd Place in the Expanded Collaborative Publishing competition of the 2015 National Schools Press Conference.