Mapua tower Will Gozum completes rise with MVP award

Mapua tower Will Gozum completes rise with MVP award

Will Gozum was given another chance by Mapua University.

After helping the Red Robins win a title a year ago, Gozum has again returned their trust in him by being recognized as the Most Valuable Player in the NCAA 93 Juniors Basketball Tournament.

With per game counts of 13.8 points in 49 percent shooting on top of 9.9 rebounds, 2.6 blocks, and 1.3 assists, the six-foot-six big man was the standout in a Mapua squad that went 13-5 in the eliminations and then quickly dispatched Colegio de San Juan de Letran in the Final Four.

This was a much welcome development for the Red Robins who welcomed him with open arms after he found himself out of University of the Philippines Integrated School.

Gozum was once part of a promising core for the Junior Maroons with Gomez de Liano brothers Javi and Juan. Even more, he wore the flag as a member of Batang Gilas.

After that national team stint, however, he was cut from the Diliman-based squad for reasons he opted not to disclose.

Fortunately for the 18-year-old and for Mapua, he landed on his feet with a program that is getting known for polishing unfinished products.

Now, he is only the second Red Robin to win the award, following in the footsteps of teammate Mike Enriquez.

However, Gozum said that back-to-back championships remain his and his team’s ultimate dream. “Masaya ako, pero ‘di pa kuntente kasi gusto ko, masaya buong community. Ibig sabihin, we still have work to do para mag-back-to-back,” he said.

Intramuros also has another reason to celebrate as do-it-all swingman Clint Escamis was the league’s Most Improved Player along with Neil Villapando.

Meanwhile, Inand Fornilos just proved that he is indeed the game-changer for College of St. Benilde-La Salle Greenhills after winning Rookie of the Year.


Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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