The Benny’s Belize Hurricanes are the 2023 Belize Elite Basketball League (BEBL) champions. The Hurricanes sealed their championship with a 79 to 73 victory over the San Pedro Tigersharks on Friday July 7. CEO of the Hurricanes Gilbert Gordon stopped by Love studios today to speak about the emotional victory and what it meant to the organization. Having lost to the Tigersharks in 2019 and lost a key member of the organization Ian Mariano Senior who passed away back in 2020, Gordon said that the team had special motivations pushing them to win. He also spoke about the special dedication made at Mariano’s gave following their victory. 

Gilbert Gordon, CEO, Benny’s Belize Hurricanes: “Well, when we started off the 2023 season, one of our main goal was to become the 2023 BEBL champion. And we set that goal and we knew that we had a team that would be able to reckon with and be able to win that championship. And so when it all came together on July 7th, that Friday night at about 11:30 you know it felt as though that we accomplished our goal of what we set forth. And what it meant for the organization is that we looked at it as, we set a goal as it to ensure that Ian Mariano was also being lifted up because he was an integral part of our organization. You know he started out in 2015 with the organization and so when I met with the players in January I said to them in order for us to win this championship we’re going to do it for Ian Mariano. And so when that happened, it meant so much for the organization. Ian, like what I said earlier, was very instrumental played an integral part of the organization especially in the marketing segment. And so when Ian passed away during the COVID session in 2020 when the season was ended abruptly that really hit the organization because we knew that we had lost someone great and hand that passion for basketball and so his role and what he have played for the organization and his legacy within the organization will always going to be uplifted and so like what I said I spoke to the team about playing this 2023 season for Ian and so two weeks before that a video that nobody have really looked at I went there and I said to him that we won the first game and we lost the second game and we are two wins away from winning the championship And I made a promise to him at his grave that we’re going to return here the following day when we win the championship with all the trophies that you have been responsible for and that’s what we did the Saturday after the championship.”

Gordon went on to say that, since the players worked hard to secure their third BEBL championship, the celebrations will match their efforts. He told us what events are planned to mark their achievement.

We’ll hear more from Gordon when he appears on our morning show later this week.

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