ARQ Lapu-Lapu unveils team for Pilipinas Vismin Super Cup

Emmanuel B. Villaruel (The Freeman) - January 16, 2021 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — The ARQ Builders in partnership with the city government of Lapu-Lapu headed by mayor Junard ‘Ahong’ Chan formally unveiled their fighting force for the first ever Pilipinas Vismin Super Cup set to start on April 9 in a bubble set-up under strict health and safety protocols mandated by the government.

Led by team owner businessman/sportsman Jason Arquisola, team manager Rico Amores, and head coach Rommel Rasmo, the ARQ Lapu-Lapu Heroes are bannered by a bunch of former PBA, commercial and collegiate stars the include Reed Friar Juntilla, Jojo Tangkay, Hafer Mondragon, Jerick Cañada, Franz Arong, Luther Luke Justiniani, Mobert Arong, and John Abad.

They will be joining forces with some of Lapu-Lapu’s homegrown cagers such as Rino Berame, Jerry Lomongsud, Jason Melano, Lloyd Solis, Ricric Ochea, Anchor Igot, Miguel Tabaloc, and Jestoni Baclaan.

“Our family is very passionate about basketball. We are very thankful to the Vismin Super Cup for giving us this kind of platform. Hopefully this league will really push through in April,” said Arquisola during the team’s grand launching yesterday at Popo’s Lechon  in Paseo de Amores.

“The City of Lapu-Lapu is giving its full support to the team so long as all protocols are being followed,” said  said Amores who is also  a city councilor.

“We have assembled a 20-man team, which is mostly composed of homegrown players,” he added. “Talent wise, they have the blood of Lapu-Lapu. They will surely fight.”

Yesterday’s event was also graced by Vismin Cup ambassador Dondon Hontiveros and Secretary General Marvin Caro.

“It’s a welcome development for the Vismin Cup to have a partnership like this,” said Hontiveros, the former PBA star turned Cebu City councilor who pledged his all-out support to the Super Cup himself being a product of the Community-based league.

   Caro, on the other hand, expressed his profound gratitude to ARQ Lapu-Lapu and to all participating teams for believing in their vision and helping them build a solid bedrock for the Super Cup.

“This is history in the making that we have a first pro basketball league in the Vismin region,” said Caro, who is also multi-titled coach both in the amateur and commercial ranks. “I am very thankful to all the teams for their support. Without them, we could not make this happen.”

Caro assured they will put all measures in place to ensure the smooth flow of the tournament amid the pandemic.

As of now, a total of seven squads have already confirmed their entry in the Super Cup that primarily aims to discover talents and give opportunities to players in the provinces.

Aside from ARQ Builders, the other contenders from the Visayas are the KCS-Mandaue of Ricky Verdida, and MJAS-Talisay City.

From Mindanao, set to see action are the Zamboanga Valientes of Rolando “Junnie” Navarro, the Pagadian Explorers of Mayor Samuel Co and Rene “Dodong” Pamaran, and two Zamboanga del Norte municipalities in Sindangan of Sonny Diaz and President Manuel A. Roxas of Mayor Jan Hendrick Vallecer.

Super Cup head of basketball operations Rocky Chan has earlier said they are targeting a total of 12 teams for their inaugural season, which will run for at least 25 days. The grand champion will pocket P500,000.

Cebu will most likely host the Visayas bubble play and Zamboanga for Mindanao.

To move forward with their target opening date, Caro said have already submitted all the documents and requirements needed to become a professional league and is now awaiting action from the Games and Amusements Board (GAB) led by chairman Baham Mitra.

Once approved, the Super Cup will make history as the first pro league based in the country’s southern provinces.

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