'Milo season' in Cebu City starts with Little Olympics
Cebu braces itself for the start of the "Milo season" as three events are lined up in the next three months here in Cebu City.
First off will be the 18th Milo Little Olympics Regional Finals-Visayas starting today at the Cebu City Sports Center (CCSC).
Next in line will be the 37th Milo Marathon Cebu Leg that will be held Sept. 22 while the last will be Cebu City's second hosting of the National Milo Little Olympics on Oct. 25 to 27 at the CCSC.
The University of Cebu will once again be defending its title in the secondary division of the Visayas regional finals.
The Webmasters retained their title for the 17th time last year but not after getting a scare from the University of San Carlos-Basic Education Department (USC-BED). UC narrowly escaped USC-BED, 176.25-161.5.
USC-BED, meanwhile, looks to continue dominating the elementary division. They are defending champions for three straight years now.
tough task for UC
UC already admitted that it will be tough task to keep USC-BED at bay this year, especially since the latter is expected to compete in the 14 sporting events, which now includes basketball.
Basketball elementary division tournament manager Rico Navarro said the inclusion of the sport to the original 13 events will be a big boost to the Team Bs of participating schools since this will be their chance to compete in a high-level competition tournament that will be held at the Cebu Coliseum.
Navarro said most of the schools will be deploying their second teams in the Milo competition since their Team As are currently competing in the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc (Cesafi) tournament.
The opening ceremonies of the regional finals will start at 1 p.m. today. Winners here will earn slots to the Visayas lineup that will compete in the National Finals.
Team Visayas is busy strengthening its lineup for October's National Finals, especially after being dethroned by the National Capital Region (NCR) last year.
Strong visayas team
Visayas delegation head Ricky Ballesteros said he expects a stronger Visayas team this year, especially with the participation once more of athletes from Western Visayas, who contributed huge points and helped Visayas clinch the Perpetual Trophy last 2011 in Linggayen, Pangasinan.
"We will make sure that we will form a formidable team Visayas out of the best schools and teams of the region," said Ballesteros during yesterday's official launching of the Regional Finals at the Sarrosa International Hotel.
Last year, Team Visayas bowed to NCR after finishing with 575 points against the latter's 614. Mindanao finished third with 383.5 while Luzon placed last with 357.5.
Meanwhile, Milo Executive Robbie de Vera said Milo and Nestle Philippines are doing their best to put up a well-organized national tournament in Cebu.
"We are focusing on the smallest detail to make sure that the event will run smoothly, this event is not just about the rivalry between delegations but also the discovery of talents who can be the future of Philippine sports," De Vera said.
De Vera was impressed by how Ballesteros and his group hosted the first National Finals and said he is optimistic that they can do it again.
"He (Ricky) changes the concept of the event every year and has enough tricks to amaze us. I'm looking forward to see Cebu's second hosting of the National Finals," De Vera said.