Robert Bolick and San Beda College are two games away from their ninth championship in the last 11 years.
While the accomplishment would reinforce the Red Lions’ status as a modern-day dynasty, there is also something at stake that is more personal to the Ormoc, Leyte native. Having already won a UAAP championship, he has a golden opportunity for a rare feat by coupling it with an NCAA title.
The most recent player to have fulfilled the rare feat was Art Dela Cruz who won with Ateneo de Manila University before winning another with San Beda. Don’t think, however, that just because it had been done in recent times, it comes all that often.
Asked about his golden opportunity, Bolick beamed while answering, “Masaya siyempre kasi lahat ng teams (na naglaro ako), winning teams.”
The NCAA rookie played for De La Salle University for two years before becoming a Red Lion. He was part of the championship team that ruled the UAAP three years ago.
And as such, he was nothing but willing to acknowledge the added pressure in already being a champion and having to lead a relatively young San Beda side. As he put it, “Malaki ang expectations lalo (sa akin kahit na) bench player lang ako sa La Salle.”
Bolick then went on to say that although he didn’t see much action in that championship round in the UAAP, he still gained wisdom from watching the Green Archers wrap up a three-game series. “Hindi ko masabi na may championship experience ako kasi hindi naman ako naglaro, pero okay lang,” he said.
He then continued, “At least, na-experience ko sa mga teammates ko kung ano talaga ang kailangan gawin.”
Now a key cog for the Lions, it’s highly unlikely that the 20-year-old won’t see much action this time around. And so, he didn’t hide his excitement for Game 1 in saying, “I’m looking forward sa Thursday. Yung pinakamagaling na point guard (Jiovani Jalalon), tuwang-tuwa ako na mababantayan ko siya ulit,” he said.
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