WORDS and INTERVIEW: BA Borleo, Jasmine W. Payo and Sid Ventura of Ubelt.com
PHOTOGRAPHY: Alfredo Mendoza
Before our basketball legends reached the pro’s, most of them experienced a bloody war first, in the name of their beloved alma mater. Competing against their rival schools to take home the sought after college crown. We have gathered the most exciting and memorable moments in college hoops, the finest in its class.
San Sebastian King Stag Rommel Adducul on SSC’s five-year NCAA rampage
“I was a new recruit in 1994. I had the height and was very aggressive. Galing kasi ako sa hirap, kaya naroon yung desire to achieve. College ball was all about pride. Sobra rin ang excitement. We capped the longest championship streak in NCAA history with a 14-0 sweep in 1997. We only lost once the year before. Malakas lang talaga kami. We had players like Brix Encarnacion, Banjo Calpito, Topex Robinson. All of us went pro. At kapag kay Coach Turo Valenzona ka galing, huhusay ka talaga."
UP Maroon Ronnie Magsanoc on the most special basketball moment of his career
“It’s only now that I understand how important our 1986 championship was. When Eric Altamirano and I came to UP, all we wanted to do was win. Nasanay kasi kami sa San Beda, which has a winning Juniors basketball tradition. Hindi nga namin alam na 44 years na palang di nanalo [ang UP]. Actually it stretched to 47 years pa, until we added Benjie Paras to the team. It was so special because we united the whole UP community for that single season through sports. I always rank it on top of the PBA championships and gold medals in national competitions that I’ve won. I still hope and pray that UP will get another championship, para rin magkaroon na ng closure and move on to another glorious chapter.”