MIBL holds first ever basketball draft


Players pose with their respective teams after being drafted to either La Mesa Kusina, Eats Easy, IT&E, Atkins Kroll, Latte Built, or Aqua Resort Club, during the first Fantasy Draft for the IT&E Marianas International Basketball League Fantasy Draft Tournament that will take place this November at the Agape Gym. (LEIGH GASES)

The Marianas International Basketball League held its first ever live basketball draft day for its inaugural IT&E MIBL Fantasy Draft Tournament last Saturday at the Kevin’s Prime Rib and Seafood Restaurant of Aqua Resort Club Saipan.

With Happy Hour prices on alcohol and hors d’oeuvre, the players chowed down and drank with gusto as they waited for their names to be chosen for a team.

The teams that will brawl it out on the courts this November are La Mesa Kusina, Eats Easy, Aqua Resort Club, Atkins Kroll, Latte Built, and IT&E.

The Fantasy Draft gave six coaches the chance to handpick 13 players each to make up their teams.

First pick in the first round was 20-year-old veteran of the Micronesian Games, Coby Santos, for Team La Mesa Kusina. The second pick was Jeffrey Castro for Team Eats Easy, third pick was Airson Atan for Team IT&E, fourth pick was Gerald Flores for Team Latte Built, fifth pick was Greg Sablan for Team Aqua Resort Club, and sixth pick was Shane De Leon Guerrero for Team Atkins Kroll.

The basketball tourney will be held during the whole month of November and games will be held at the Agape Christian School gym every Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays from 7pm and 8:30pm each day. Each team will be guaranteed to play a total of three games in the tournament.

The coach for La Mesa Kusina is John Saludez, with assistant coach Jun Hernandez; the coach for Eats Easy is Clint Albert, with assistant coach Jave Sablan; the coach for Aqua Resort Club is Hank Sablan, with assistant coach Arvin Daluyen; the coach for Atkins Kroll is Dennis Guidotti; the coach for Latte Built is Matt Iguel; and the coach for IT&E is Preston Basa, with assistant coach Zack Diaz.

The rosters for each team are as follows: La Mesa Kusina’s team includes ​​Coby Santos, Mac Mintac, Djaymarch Ong, Jeffrey Che, Brian Natividad Jr. Galang, Aga Sapo, Yugie Cruz, Jerome Reyes, Gabby Camacho, Rayan Hipolito, Ace Doca, and Joel Saplan; Eats Easy’s team consists of ​​Jeffrey Castro, Jaymark De Guzman, Joseph Sablan, Gregory Deleon Guerrero, Clint Albert, Arfin Chua, JC Ferrari, Kerwin Dayao, John Hu, Daniel Li, Jay Macaraig, Sam Darag, and Jaime Antonio; Aqua Resort Club’s team is Greg Sablan, Jack Aranda, Glen Aquino, Bradley Palacios, Michael Ma, Keith Santos, Terence Leung, Caleb Cui, Stephen Chen, Arvin Daluyen, Jayson Glean, and Jacky Liu; Atkins Kroll’s team is Shane De Leon Guerrero, Juan Camacho, Frank Ferrer, Joel Javier, Jetsen Jandoc, Webster Taracatac,  Chris Lilles, Raymond Velasco, Mark Jerome Directo, Bryan Rejano, Mario Rutab, and Joseph Ellazar; Latte Built’s team is Gerald Flores, Elijah Aughenbaugh, Donovan Brennan, Francisco Mizutani, Mariano Junior Aguon, Tom Pangelinan, Katsutoshi Pangelinan, Athan Taisague, Matt Zhang, Junie Camacho, Juke Chen, Russell Hocog, and Kevin Leomo; and IT&E’s team is Airson Atan, Ed Diaz, Kelvin Fitial, Jesse Santos, Preston Basa, Rodel Pastrana, Jacob Wang, Bill Li, Meljune Capalad, Ronald Esmores, David Ji, Carson Sumor, and Albert Agustin.

The Top 4 teams will go to battle in the playoffs to determine the best two teams for the championship game.

There will be medals awarded to the champions, an MVP award, and a Mythical 5 award.

The MIBL Tournament organizers thanked their “MVP sponsor IT&E and Team Managers [for] AK Toyota, La Mesa Kusina, Eats Easy, Aqua Resort Club, and Latte Built. And thank you also to Hot Deals for giving some prizes and Agape School for hosting the tournament.”

Leigh Gases
Leigh Gases is the youngest reporter of Saipan Tribune and primarily covers community related news, but she also handles the utilities, education, municipal, and veterans beats. Contact Leigh at leigh_gases@saipantribune.com.

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