MANILA – Kazaam reigned supreme in the inaugural women's division of the Next5Hoops tournament after beating Tattoo, 79-73, in the finals last July 7 at the Makati Coliseum.
Joan Jessica Diego had a double-double of 20 points and 17 rebounds for Kazaam, which out-rebounded Tattoo 27-38.
Kazaam also drew solid performances from Dian Michel Casalme, who had 16 points on 4-of-17 three-point shooting, and Loreznvi Tan and Bettina Magsanoc, who combined for 20 points.
Rica Francisco and Mel Mandap scored 19 and 14 points, respectively, in a losing effort for Tattoo.
Kazaam had also beaten Tattoo, 59-49, in their lone elimination round game. The champions had to overcome Rogue, their lone tormentor in the single-round robin eliminations, in the one-off semi-finals, while Tattoo ousted UP Bolera.
Six teams, which also included Swoosh and EGS, kicked off the opening year of the women's division set up by One Unite Sports, marking the growing success of women's basketball in the country.
Organizers are confident that more teams will be added in the near future, making the tournament even more competitive.