UAAP 81 Season MVP Kai Sotto found his match in Finals MVP Carl Tamayo
Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Feb 22, 2019 08:40 PM
Carl Tamayo was part of a well-oiled NU machine that not even Kai Sotto can stop
A year ago, Kai Sotto dominated the likes of Pao Javillonar, Michael Malonzo, and Robert Minerva – all undersized – in the Finals as Ateneo de Manila High School claimed the championship.
No such thing was happening again this season as Nazareth School of National University now had Carl Tamayo and Kevin Quiambao to stand toe-to-toe with Sotto.
In particular, it was Tamayo who gave the 7-foot-1, 16-year-old all he can handle as the former made the latter work on both offense and defense.
In the end, it was the Bullpups and their own towering teen who got the better of the Blue Eaglets, winning all four of their meetings and winning the championship.
And in the end, even Sotto had to acknowledge Tamayo’s efforts. “Talagang magaling na players sina Carl at Quiambao. Gusto ko pa ulit sila makalaro, pero kakampi naman,” he joshed with reporters.
Of course, the NU big man’s efforts were too tough not to acknowledge as he posted per game counts of 14 points, 11 rebounds, and 1.5 blocks in the Finals en route to being the Finals MVP.
This, after averaging 11.5 points, 8.6 rebounds, and 1.2 blocks in the elimination round as he battled through a right ankle sprain. “Siyempre, perseverance lang. Sobrang hirap nung pinagdaanan ko na ‘di ko makuha yung kundisyon ko kasi panay injury,” he shared.
He then continued, “Pero ‘di ako tumigil hanggang ‘di namin nakuha yung goal namin. ‘Di ko naman inisip na makukuha ko yung Finals MVP kasi ang improtante sa akin, yung championship.”
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