Bisdak Fighters clinch third Filipino basketball league title
Taipei, May 3 (CNA) The Bisdak Fighters basketball team clinched their third championship title Sunday after a nail-biting final game of the winter basketball league for Filipino migrant workers held in Taipei by a Philippine organization that helps compatriots in different countries.
The dominant team in recent years, the Fighters also won the championship at the 2019 CIASI Taiwan Summer Basketball League in August that year, and the 2018 Phil. New Taipei Basketball League in April 2019.
The Bisdak Fighters, named after an expression that refers to a native of the Cebuano-speaking areas of the Visayas and Mindanao in the Philippines, defeated the Wuku Hollywood Sports Bar team 114-101 in a game that was tied in the fourth quarter.
Both teams moved the ball with lightening fast plays that saw the scores hike as players landed buckets from inside and beyond the arc. Hollywood led at halftime 80-76, but the Fighters bounced back to an 86-point tie with just under seven minutes left in the game.
Stepping up their speed with fast breaks and accurate shooting, the Fighters found their mark and edged ahead to win the game and claim the title.
Fighters power forward Louie Mark Anthony Bayeta led all scores with 23 points and was named MVP.
Bayeta, who hails from the province of Agusan del Norte in the Philippines and now works in Taichung, said the Fighters beat Hollywood because they made use of their speed and defended well.
"Our opponents are bigger than us, so the key to win was speed and putting trust into each teammate," Bayeta told CNA.
The CIASI Taipei Winter Basketball League 2020, which featured 16 men's teams that played on Sundays from Nov. 15, 2020 to May 2 on the outdoor basketball courts behind Taipei's Minglun High School, was organized by the Taiwan chapter of the Confederation of Ilocano Association, Inc., Samahang Ilocano (CIASI).
Rheden Delumen, national chairman of CIASI's Taiwan chapter, which has 14 sub-chapters with over 1,200 members in the country, said the basketball teams are made up of members of Taiwan's Filipino migrant worker community and seek to promote unity, sportsmanship and respect.
Meanwhile, Arnold Kanoy, leader of the CIASI in Taiwan Disciplinary Action Committee and commissioner of the basketball tournament, said in addition to helping Filipino migrant workers fight homesickness, the event also raised funds which were donated to people in need in the Philippines.
"Working abroad and being away from our families will make you feel homesick, that's why I'm encouraging to participate in this kind of event but not only in basketball but also in other sports. It will not only entertain you, remove stress and homesickness, but you are also playing for a cause," Kanoy said.
CIASI Taiwan raised over NT$28,000 (US$1,000) to buy relief goods for people affected by Typhoon Vamco, known in the Philippines as Ulysses, in November last year, as torrential rain pounded Cagayan and Isabela provinces.
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