by Gumamela Celes Bejarin
At 3:30 pm today, the Timugan Basketball Court echoed of good humored laughter and screams as the crowd cheered for the basketball players in pink and white.
The Gay Basketball was organized by the Los Baños Group (LBG) and the BIG Basketball as a pre-fiesta event for Barangays Bambang, Baybayin, Lalakay, and Timugan.
“Ginawa ito para sa kasiyahan ng mga tao,” said Randolph Tolentino, LBG CEO and Vice President. Although this is their first time to organize the event, Tolentino said they may organize it yearly because of its success.
“We consider them as part of our community dahil tao din naman sila na nakakapagbigay ng saya sa lipunan,” Tolentino said when asked why they considered gays as the participants. “We respect their personality,” he added.
According to Mark Joseph Marti, one of the audience, he wanted to watch the event because it is not usual for gays to play basketball. He said that he enjoyed watching the game.
“I joined the game just for fun,” said Mike Nico Paner a player of Brgy. Timugan. He also said that the game was both tiring and fun.
Em-Em Mendoza, a player of Brgy. Lalakay said, “Masaya kami dahil as a gay, di namin naeexperience magbasketball talaga. Napatunayan namin na hindi lang mga lalaki ang nakakapagbasketball.”
For today’s game, Brgy. Lalakay won against Brgy. Timugan with the score of 16-12.
Tomorrow at 3:30 pm, gays from Brgy. Bambang and Brgy. Baybayin will also play at the Timugan Basketball Court.
According to Tolentino, the championship game for the gay basketball is not yet scheduled.