The Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi) may have been the first school-based sports league to cancel out its season due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but it sees a silver lining in the second semester.
Unknown to many, aside from sports events in the first semester, Cesafi also regularly holds academic and cultural contests in the second semester, to highlight the academic strengths of the members schools which are among Cebu’s top universities and colleges.
“Most likely, the academics and cultural events won’t be affected because these start in January, 2021,” long-time Cesafi commissioner Felix Tiukinhoy told CebuSports.Net.
Tiukinhoy announced the cancellation of the basketball and the rest of the sports activities on April 30, six days before the Department of Education cancelled its sports and other crowd-drawing activities citing the danger Covid-19 poses to students.
However, Tiukinhoy sees this also as a chance to highlight the academic contests, which also supports the view of Cesafi president Engr. Bernard Nicolas Villamor of the Cebu Institute of Technology-University (CIT-U), since he has long put more importance on the academic achievements of the student athletes.
“Basta Cesafi, estyudante,” Villamor said during last year’s opening ceremony, a mantra he keeps on repeating in every Cesafi activity.
“Let us focus on academics this time,” said Tiukinhoy.
Among the second semester activities for Cesafi are math, science and computer quizes, oration, spelling and declamation contests, dance contests. It also holds cooking contests, an essay writing contest and Cebuano/Visayan Rap contest.
As for its basketball and other crowd-drawing events, Tiukinhoy said it won’t necessarily be a no-vaccine, no-play affair for the league.
“Not necessary (that we will require a vaccine). It depends on IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases) protocol on basketball. Hopefully, things might flatten out but new normal on basketball stays,” he said.
Southwestern University-Phinma won the 2019 basketball title over perennial favorite University of the Visayas for just its second collegiate title in the 19-year-old league. It won its first in 2013. On the other hand, the Sacred Heart School-Ateneo de Cebu won its fourth title in six years in the high school division.