By: Jonas N. Panerio December 20,2016 - 10:09 PM

Letran’s Jomari Sollano in action during a NCAA game earlier this year. Sollano, a former USPF center, was picked by Tanduay in the first round. (FILE PHOTO)

Letran’s Jomari Sollano in action during a NCAA game earlier this year. Sollano, a former USPF center, was picked by Tanduay in the first round. (FILE PHOTO)

Cesafi standouts near pro ranks after being selected in PBA D-League Draft

Several standouts of the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi) got the chance to take a step closer to their dreams of playing in the professional ranks as they got selected by different teams in the PBA D-League Draft on Tuesday at PBA Cafe in Metrowalk, Pasig City.

Former University of Southern Philippines Foundation (USPF) center Jomari Sollano was picked second by Tanduay and was joined shortly on the same squad by former Southwestern University (SWU)-Phinma Cobra Monbert Arong.

When informed of the development, the 6-foot-5 center now of Letran said he was surprised that he went so high, as he was just expecting to get picked in the third round.

“I’m surprised to get picked this high but this happened so I am thankful for the blessing,” said Sollano, the hero of Letran’s 2015 NCAA title run.

“I’m ready to play at this level but I am not letting my guard down. I’m constantly preparing since the players here in the D-League are already veterans while I am just a rookie here. I realize that I still have a lot to learn but I’m confident that my teammates will help me along the process,” he added.

Arong, the pride of Olango Island, said that while he is happy to get picked by the team of flamboyant head coach Lawrence Chiongson, he is entirely focused on adapting to his new team after relishing the role of being King Tamaraw for FEU this past UAAP season.

Two-time Cesafi MVP Macmac Tallo, also of SWU-Phinma, was selected in the third round by Racal Motors and was immediately followed by ex-University of the Visayas Baby Lancer Orlan Wamar, who was picked by Café France.

Tallo shared that he’s returning to the Manila scene as a whole different person than the one that first went to Ateneo and then bolted for La Salle, several years ago.

“Back then, I was under a lot of pressure from my father to dominate right away. This time around, I am going to take my time to just feel my way around my team and get to know the system and the players. Maybe when my time comes, I’ll do well but now, I just want to fit in since I’ll be out of my comfort zone,” Tallo said.

The fifth round saw another former ace of USPF, JB Bahio, get selected by Cignal-San Beda while SWU-Phinma’s Ian Ortega was tapped to play for Café France.

“It’s just another step in chasing a dream, so yes I think so,” answered Ortega when asked if he was ready to play in the much-tougher D-League.

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TAGS: Cebu, cebu schools athletic foundation inc., Cesafi, Pasig City, Southwestern University, University of Southern Philippines Foundation

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