Clint Escamis will rise where Mapua's twin towers once stood
Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Apr 07, 2018 07:19 PM
Without a doubt, Mapua is now Clint Escamis' team
Mapua High School looks like it will be rebuilding for the looming 94th Season of the NCAA Juniors Basketball Tournament.
Having lost its pillars to graduation, the Red Robins will be a brand new team.
Twin towers Season MVP Will Gozum and Mythical selection Warren Bonifacio as well as former MVP Mike Enriquez have moved on, leaving head coach Randy Alcantara to go out and discover even more diamonds in the rough.
Fortunately for Intramuros, they may very well already have those diamonds in the rough. “Marami po kaming bagong players na magaling galing probinsya,” Clint Escamis shared.
In the eyes of Escamis, the team’s new skipper, there is no doubt that Mapua will remain in contention – even as about three quarters of its lineup will be rookies.
All of it starts with Alcantara who is an esteemed coach who built the Red Robins’ program from the ground up. That has led to one championship and one runner-up finish in the last two years. “Siyempre, dahil kay coach Randy, may chance pa rin. Dahil magaling siyang mag-coach, sure akong mag-iimprove yung mga bago namin,” Escamis said.
Of course, the esteemed coach will need some help to make that happen – and the good news is he already has one in Escamis who served as the facilitator in anything and everything they did in their Finals run a season ago.
Now he’s the undisputed leader of the team, the senior guard is nothing but prepared to take on more responsibility.
Whether that be on the court where he will lead the Red Robins into battle up against defending champion College of St. Benilde-La Salle Greenhills, also-reloading San Beda High School, and resurgent Colegio de San Juan de Letran and San Sebastian College-Recoletos. “Magiging mas court general po ako. I have to make my team better,” he said.
He then continued, “Yung teammates ko, wala pa masyadong experience. Nandun pa rin yung shots ko, pero I’m gonna pass the ball more often na.”
Or off the court where he will have to guide their new players in their first year in the big leagues. “Sabi ni coach Randy talaga sa akin, bawal nang maging quiet. Ginawa na niya akong team captain so kailangan ko nang mag-lead talaga,” he said.
In the end, nobody should expect Mapua to fall of the map – even after losing a Season MVP and a Mythical selection.
After all, they still have the do-it-all guard who can only improve on his per game counts of 14.2 points, 6.5 rebouds, 3.8 assists, and 1.7 steals last year.
Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.