JLC and Bullpups eyeing redemption in NBTC All-Star
Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Mar 13, 2017 04:26 PM
ONE LAST RIDE. Denied back-to-back championships yet again, John Lloyd Clemente and two teammates are nothing but determined to leave an NU-sized mark in the NBTC All-Star Game.
No, Nazareth School of National University will not be competing in the 2017 National Basketball Training Center League National Finals.
The UAAP’s representative will be Far Eastern University-Diliman – the team that dismantled the Bullpups in the recently-concluded Juniors Finals.
And so, NU, the first-ever kings of NBTC Division 1, won’t even be there to defend their crown this time around.
In the end, the Baby Tamaraws took away from the Bullpups not only their UAAP championship, but their NBTC championship as well.
Still, NU remains a powerhouse in high school basketball. And with three representatives in the NBTC All-Star Game, that cannot be taken away from them.
For now, at the very least, that’s where the boys from Sampaloc want to make their mark anew. “Basta magfo-focus kami lalo sa mga susunod para makabawi,” forward Rhayyan Amsali expressed.
He then continued, “Bawi na lang talaga. Kahit dito (NBTC) lang muna.”
That is even truer for the 15-year-old as he has been selected to be among the best of the best for the second year in a row. “Nakaka-proud po sa sarili kasi nung nasa Zamboanga pa ako, hindi ko naman in-expect na magganito. Ang pangarap ko lang naman dati, maging successful lang sa normal na basketball,” he said.
Fellow NBTC All-Star repeater John Lloyd Clemente was of the same mind.
“Blessing po ‘to sa akin kasi pangalawang beses ko na. Sa dami-daming pwedeng makuha, ako ang napili,” the Bullpups captain said. “Masaya po akong nag-pay off yung hardwork kasi nung simula pa lang naman, lahat ginagawa ko para mag-improve.”
For his part, Karl Penano – an NU stalwart, but a first-timer as NBTC All-Star – said that he will take the opportunity to surprise even more people. Talking about his underrated reliability, he said, “Gusto ko pong madala rito yung technique ko na trabaho lang. Kung ganun kasi, parang mag-rerelax yung kalaban tapos kaya ko nang manggulat.”
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