UAAP 80 Men's Football: Late father helped push Conrado Dimacali III and UST past heartbreak and into the Finals

Santino Honasan on Apr 30, 2018 12:48 PM
Late father helped push Dimacali and UST into the Finals
"Talagang nag-dasal talaga ako, humingi ako sa Dad ko ng tulong, na sabi ko, gabayan niya ako kahit hindi ko siya nakikita, nag-dasal ako na gabayan mo ako, bigyan mo ako ng lakas, bigyan mo ako ng isang goal lang, and aabot kami ng championship game."

After a five-season drought, the University of Santo Tomas Growling Tigers are back in the UAAP Men's Football Finals, and they have Conrado Dimacali III to thank for that. 

During Thursday's UAAP Season 80 Men's Football Semifinals matchup against defending champions Ateneo de Manila University, Dimacali scored a header in extra time that proved to be the difference in a dramatic 120-minute contest. 

It ended Ateneo's quest for back-to-back championships, but more importantly it also ended UST's string of Final Four appearances without making it to the season finale. 

For the last three seasons, the Growling Tigers have clinched a semifinals berth, but it has never translated to a Finals berth, that is, until this year. 

"Ilang beses naming pinangarap na maka-laro kami ng Finals, since first year naka-abot na kami ng [Final Four] hanggang ngayon, sobrang blessed talaga na makapasok kami ng Finals." Dimacali said following UST's semis win. "Panay lang kami sa Final Four, ngayon naka-Finals na kami. Sobang blessed sa amin yun, talagang pinanalangin talaga namin na makuha yun."

It was also quite fitting that Dimacali be the one the put an end to UST's semifinals heartaches, being that days prior to the semis, the third-year forward and his family went through unimaginable heartache of their own. 

Monday last week, Dimacali's father Conrado Jr. passed away due to a heart attack from complications after a battle with kidney issues. 

UST Head Coach Marjo Allado the passing of Dimacali's father proved to be an extra motivator, and true enough it paid off in the most important match of the season so far. for the Tigers.

According to Dimacali, he asked his dad for just one goal. It was all that he needed.

"Talagang nag-dasal talaga ako, humingi ako sa Dad ko ng tulong, na sabi ko, gabayan niya ako kahit hindi ko siya nakikita, nag-dasal ako na gabayan mo ako, bigyan mo ako ng lakas, bigyan mo ako ng isang goal lang, and aabot kami ng championship game."

"Yun nga, binigay niya yung goal ko and umabot kami ng Finals."

And while Dimacali and the rest of the UST community can savor the moment of once again making it to the season's final dance, there's still work to do. 

On May 3rd, UST sets their sights on a third men's football championship. 

It won't come easy though as they'll be taking on unbeaten University of the Philippines, who are gunning for their second title in three years. 

 

You can catch the UAAP Season 80 Men's Football Finals between UST and UP on Thursday, May 3rd at 3:00 PM LIVE on ABS-CBN S+A channel 23, S+A HD channel 166, LIGA channel 86, LIGA HD 183, and on LIVESTREAMING

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