Pontejos on playing through grief: ‘Para sayo, papa’

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Oct 17, 2015 01:50 AM
Pontejos on playing through grief: ‘Para sayo, papa’
FOR PAPA. Paolo Pontejos put on a show of strength for his late father.

Mapua Institute of Technology and Jose Rizal University tussled for the third-seed last Friday at the MOA Arena.

The matchup had much significance for both teams, but it took on a personal meaning for two of the players involved. While CJ Isit dedicated the Cardinals’ 81-76 win to his late lola, Paolo Pontejos just went out and played for the Heavy Bombers to show strength in light of his papa’s passing.

For sure, the player who took the floor wasn’t the same one who caught fire in the second round of the tournament. Two free throws were the only attempts the fourth-year guard converted in only 11 minutes of action.

Asked about his performance, Pontejos told ABS-CBN Sports, “Wala talaga ako sa kundisyon kasi ‘di naman ako nakapag-practice simula nung namatay yung papa ko.”

Joey Pontejos, Paolo’s father, died a week ago due to a heart attack. He was 47

Still, Paolo said he needed to be on the floor to prove to his papa that he will be all right. Much like what was printed on the shirt he wore, he said, “I just wanted to play for him to show him that I’m okay.”

The elder Pontejos watched more than a few JRU contests during the season and last Friday, the younger Pontejos shared he knew he was still there. “Naramdaman kong nandun pa rin siya kasi nandun yung buong family ko. Alam kong gina-guide pa rin niya ako,” he said.


Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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