Four explosive matches will kick off hostilities in the inaugural 18-team Shakey’s Super League 2022 Collegiate Pre-Season Championship slated to open on 24 September at the historic Rizal Memorial Coliseum.
Reigning National Collegiate Athletic Association champion College of St. Benilde gets an early acid test when the Lady Blazers faceoff with an equally dangerous University Athletic Association of the Philippines squad in Far Eastern University in Pool D in the 4:00 p.m. match of the quadruple-header opening day.
The Jerry Yee-mentored CSB will parade the same championship core led by NCAA Most Valuable Player Mycah Go that went unbeaten in 11 games in NCAA Season 97.
The first two pairings of the opening playdate pit Pool A squads University of the East and Mapua University in the 12:00 noon match followed by the San Beda University-University of Perpetual Help tussle at 2:00 p.m.
Capping the day is the Pool B encounter between UAAP teams University of Santo Tomas and Adamson University.
This will be the first time that a tournament will feature all eight teams from the UAAP and 10 from the NCAA.
“We’re very excited about this conference as we will be able to watch the best college and university teams compete before the start of their respective collegiate seasons,” said Dr. Ian Laurel, president of SSL organizer Athletic Events and Sports Management Inc., during the league’s press conference on Saturday at the Philippine Sports Commission Hall inside the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex.
ACES chairman and CEO Philip Ella Juico, Shakey’s Pizza Asia Ventures Inc. president and CEO Vicente Gregorio, Philippine Sports Commission chairperson Jose Emmanuel “Noli” Eala, coaches and team captains of participating teams were also present during the media launch.
The 18 teams are divided into four groups with the top two teams of each pool will advance to the next round. The top eight teams will again be divided into two pools playing in another round-robin play to determine their ranking in the knockout quarterfinals. Both the semifinal and f inal are also knockout matches.
Joining UE, Mapua, San Beda and Perpetual in Pool A is University of the Philippines while San Sebastian College, Emilio Aguinaldo College and Lyceum of the Philippines University round up the list of teams in Pool B.
UAAP Season 84 champion National University, Ateneo de Manila University, Jose Rizal University and Arellano University are in Pool C while De La Salle University and Letran join CSB and FEU in Pool D.