THE 2012 Jr. NBA Philippines came to a successful end over the weekend with the naming of the members that make up this year’s Jr. NBA All-Star team, led by kids from Manila and Cagayan de Oro.
2012 JR. NBA coaches and officials with members of the All-Star Team
After five months of selection which started with the school clinics then progressed to the regional training camps that took the program to Puerto Princesa in Palawan, Cagayan de Oro, Pampanga and Manila, Jr. NBA Philippines, presented by Alaska Powdered Milk, came up with the 10 best campers after the culminating national training camp held from May 3 to 5 at the University of the Philippines, Diliman Gym and the Music Hall of the Mall of Asia in Pasay City.
Four Manilans, three from Cagayan de Oro and one each from Puerto Princesa, Pampanga and the Alaska Power Camp bested a field of 50 kids, aged 10 to 14, who topped their respective regional selection camps.
The selected 10 were Aljun Jay Melecio, Camillus Altamirano, Patrick Ramirez and John Roald Mayor from the Manila Regional Training Camp; Lui Besa, Felixberto Jaboneta and Arnie Padilla from the Cagayan de Oro camp; Paul Dagunan from the Puerto Princesa camp; Antonio Jeffrey Coronel from Pampanga and Regille Kent Ilagan from the Alaska Power Camp in Manila. The kids make up the 2012 Jr. NBA Philippines All-Star Team and will be gifted with a once-in-a-lifetime NBA experience and the chance to travel abroad to play against a counterpart Jr. NBA Team.
This year’s three-day national training camp was conducted under the guidance of NBA legend and three-time champion Luc Longley of the Chicago Bulls, Jr. NBA clinician Chris Clunie and Alaska assistant coach and Philippine Basketball Association legend Jojo Lastimosa along with other regional coaches.
During the boot camp, participants had to do a series of basketball drill, skills tests, stamina challenges, competitive games and fun games which were all meant to test their physical, mental, emotional and spiritual strengths, which formed the basis for one’s selection to the All-Star Team.
Meanwhile, Coach Alan Ayo of ABC Ideas of Sorsogon City and a city councilor was chosen as the 2012 Jr. NBA Coach of the Year.
The Jr. NBA Program is the leading youth basketball program in the US that serves existing recreational youth basketball leagues through support programs for players, coaches, parents and officials. Apart from advanced basketball instructions, the program also teaches valuable life skills, including the Jr. NBA S.T.A.R. values of Sportsmanship, Teamwork, a positive Attitude and Respect.
This year was the fifth time it was staged here with help from Gatorade, Spalding, Basketball TV, Studio 23 and the Basketball Coaches Association of the Philippines. —Michael Angelo S. Murillo