Tigers find treasure from scrap heap of other squads

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Sep 05, 2017 08:03 PM
Tigers find treasure from scrap heap of other squads
FINDERS KEEPERS. UST is hoping its players from anywhere and everywhere can help the school return to relevance.

Transferees have been showing Lyceum of the Philippines University the way to the league lead in the NCAA.

From former San Sebastian and Ateneo stud CJ Perez to former Adamson talents Jaycee and Jayvee Marcelino, players who have been discarded by their former teams are now starring for the Pirates.

And if LPU has used that formula for success all the way to the top of the NCAA standings, what’s stopping another team from replicating it in another league.

That’s what University of Sto. Tomas is hoping to do in the UAAP.

Parading four newcomers who have transferred from other schools, the boys from Espana are confident they have completely compensated for missing out on blue-chip recruits.

“Sakin, mas importante yung experience kaysa kilalang-kilalang rookie. Mas importante saking may experience sila kasi kung kilalang-kilalang rookie, mape-pressure pa yun e,” team captain Marvin Lee said, himself once a transferee from Far Eastern University-Diliman High School.

Steve Akomo, who played for University of Visayas; Carlo Escalambre, who played for UP and Adamson; Christian Garcia, who played for Adamson; and Jordan Sta. Ana, who played for UE, are now Growling Tigers.

(EDITOR’S NOTE: Last Monday, Akomo was recommended for ineligibility by the UAAP Board of Managing Directors. The final say, however, lies with the Board of Trustees which will convene within the week.)

Lee is nothing but appreciative of what all of them bring to the table. “Alam na alam nila yung role nila. Kung anong ipagawa sa kanila, ginagawa lang nila,” he said.

And all of them are nothing but appreciative that they are home. As Escalambre put it, “After high school, dapat dito talaga ako e. Sobrang pangarap kong school ‘to kaya ito yung napili kong last school ko.”

Garcia could only agree. “Dito ko lang talaga nakuha yung kumpyansa ko sa paglalaro,” he said.

And Sta. Ana had the same sentiments. “Sa tingin ko po, mas fit ako sa team na ‘to, sa teammates ko rito. Dito ko nakita yung sarili ko,” he said.

Now with UST, the four will play key parts with Escalambre and Sta. Ana backstopping Lee and Oliver De Guzman. Akomo and Garcia then bolster a frontline that has Regie Boy Basibas and Jeepy Faundo.

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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