IN a move that is unprecedented in Cebu’s long and rich basketball history, the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi) has postponed all the games in the juniors division “until further notice” in the wake of the raging legal battle over University of San Carlos player Scott Aying's eligibility.
Cesafi commissioner Felix Tiukinhoy announced the postponement after a meeting by the league’s Board of Trustees last Thursday evening, one day after a legal drama played out at midcourt when the league was served a Temporary Restraining Order over its decision to rule Aying ineligible.
[For full story, see Legal battle plays out on court as Cebu league hit by TRO over Aying eligibility]
The development left in limbo the four teams currently playing the semifinal round including Aying’s own USC Baby Warriors.
Rommel Rasmo, head coach of the defending champions Sacred Heart School-Ateneo de Cebu Magis Eagles, said he was shocked and frustrated with the developments, but added the school will respect the decision of the league’s board members.
“Even if we’re frustrated with the delay, we know that above all else, we at SHS-AdC must simply follow the rules of the Cesafi. If it’s for the betterment of the league, then we respect that decision,” said Rasmo, the longtime head coach of the school’s juniors division squad.
SHS-AdC and the Cebu Eastern College are leading the semifinal round with similar win-loss records of 3-1. The University of San Carlos and the University of the Visayas are also tied with identical 1-3 records. The top two teams at the end of the semifinals advance to the best-of-three championship series.
CEC’s head coach Rodmark Del Rosario said that the delay of the tournament might actually help the team in its preparations.
Del Rosario also affirmed support for the league’s stance. “What’s to stop other teams from appealing future decisions made by the league?” he said.