Naga title victory a morale booster for USC Warriors
Cebu City, Philippines — The University of San Carlos (USC) may have ushered in the dawn of a new era for their collegiate basketball team after a Warriors squad composed mainly of rookies and neophytes topped the Naga City Inter-Collegiate Basketball League.
The Warriors bagged the Naga City hoops title with a resounding 76-67 win over the University of Southern Philippines Foundation (USPF) Panthers last Sunday, March 17, 2019.
With veterans Lucky Ecarma, Gio Laguyo, Malcolm Tan and John Reel Saycon no longer with the team, the Warriors leaned on prolific guards Kurt Trangia, Froilan Mangubat and Roosvelt Jelianggao, who all scored in double-figures to help the Warriors capture the trophy and the P100,000 cash prize. Trangia was eventually named as the tournament MVP.
Mangubat gave plenty of credit to his teammates, who, he said, were able to grasp the intricacies of their system and do their part in the pocket tournament.
“It is a good start for my team even though most of my teammates are new but we as a team always cooperate during every practice, and by the grace of God, naka adapt ra dayon akoa new teammates,” said Mangubat, who peppered USPF’s defense with four three-pointers on his way to scoring 18 points.
Jelianggao, a former University of the Visayas Baby Lancer who is coming off his rookie season, said the title win was a definite morale-booster.
“That was an important win in order to prove our worth in the league. Bisan wala na ang mga veterans like Saycon, Laguyo and Ecarma, ni step up gihapon ang tanan,” said the high-leaping two-guard who put up 16 markers in the title-clinching game.
The young man also added that even though they went unbeaten in the said competition, they never let it get to their heads, which was a crucial part in them getting the victory over USPF.
“Since day one, we treated ourselves as underdogs but we just played our hearts out and fortunately got the win,” Jelianggao shared. /bmjo
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