Costa Rica´s premier basketball league tipped off Tuesday night, as all eight national teams were in action for the first round of the Torneo de Copa, the league´s annual tournament. The first national basketball league was created in 1975; the Superior Basketball League (LBS), which began its fifth season Tuesday, was created in 2005.
Over the course of the next five weeks, the eight teams in the LBS will compete to be the tournament´s champion, to be crowned the first week of April.
The teams competing for the Cup are:
- The Ferretería Brenes Barva – The Heredia-based favorite to win the tournament and league
- Kolbi Liceo of Costa Rica – Considered a top challenger for the title
- University of Costa Rica (UCR)
- Ferretería Boston – from the southern zone city of Pérez Zeledón
- San Luis Gonzaga – Cartago based squad
- USJ ARBA – Second year team based in San Ramón, Alajuela
- Cartago – first year in top division
In the first round of games Tuesday, Barva, the favorite to win the tournament, trounced UCR 83-57 at the UCR gym in San Pedro. In other action, ARBA crushed San Luis Gonzaga 94 to 52 and Cartago eked past Boston Pérez Zeledon 60-59. Escazú and Kolbi Liceo will play their first round game on March 21.
The eight teams in the tournament are grouped into two divisions of four teams each. In the first round, teams in each division play each other twice for a total of six games. At the completion of the first round, the top two teams from each division advanced to the semifinals, where they will play a best-of-three series. The winners of the two semifinal series will play a best-of-three series in the finals of the competition. The finals are scheduled to begin the week of April 5.
The second round of games is scheduled for Friday night.