Tankoua on playing out NCAA 95: 'If the family needs you, you stay'

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Jul 07, 2019 07:30 PM
Tankoua on NCAA 95: 'If the family needs you, you stay''
Donald Tankoua chose to stay in San Beda instead of accepting offers to play abroad.

San Beda University's title defense in the NCAA 95 Men's Basketball Tournament got off on the right foot with a rout of Arellano University, Sunday at MOA Arena.

"Bandana Bros." James Canlas and Evan Nelle continued to impress, but atop the scoring column for the Red Lions was actually Cameroonian powerhouse Donald Tankoua who had a 13-point, 12-rebound double-double.

Of course, Tankoua's presence was nothing but a welcome development in Mendiola as after they won their third consecutive championship, there was a question of whether or not he was playing out his fifth and final season.

"I'm keeping my fingers crossed that he will be back for next year," head coach Boyet Fernandez said then. "Hopefully, we can change his mind."

Fortunately for San Beda, the 6-foot-6 big man indeed chose to come back.

This, in the face of offers to play abroad.

The reason? "It was hard, but San Beda is family and if the family needs you, you stay. It's the last year for (foreign student-athletes) in the NCAA so I stayed," he said.

Along with that, Tankoua wanted nothing more than to complete his academics. "My future, it's really big. I'm really happy to stay because it's a dream for all the parents see their child having a diploma," he said.

For that, Coach Boyet is only thankful. "Donald is determined to finish his college career with a championship. He's our best player in the post and he showed it today," he said.

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