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Two Cebuano FEU cagers return to Cebu to play for different Cesafi teams
Two up-and-coming Cebuano cagers who have spent time playing for the Far Eastern University (FEU) Tamaraws will be making their way back home to join separate squads in time for the opening of the new Cesafi season next month.
Former Philippine national youth team standout Arnie Christian Padilla and big man Reeve Ugsang will try to restart their stalled collegiate careers when they play for the University of San Jose-Recoletos (USJ-R) and the University of San Carlos (USC), respectively.
Both players have already asked permission from FEU and were given the green light to transfer by head coach Nash Racela and athletic director Mark Molina.
“Arnie (Padilla) and his family asked permission just this week. It was a decision they felt was best for Arnie’s career and we support them in their move. We hope Arnie the best in his new school,” said Racela in a brief talk with Cebu Daily News.
Ugsang, a 6-foot-5 big man from the University of the Visayas (UV) Baby Lancers, suited up for the Tamaraws back in 2014 and posted meager numbers in his three minutes of playing time in the eight games that he took part in.
Padilla, on the other hand, was recruited from the Sacred Heart School-Ateneo de Cebu, and had toiled in FEU’s Team B for two years.
Padilla’s move to the Jaguars’ camp will add more firepower to a team already loaded with athletic wingmen and forwards. Padilla, the son of former PBA player Onie Padilla, said he chose USJ-R because of the system being employed by veteran head coach Jun Noel.
“Me and my family decided to go to USJ-R because we know the team needs me. They have had a strong interest in me since last year. And I really want to play and show my talent with them,” said Padilla.
“I chose USJ-R because they have a good system, a good veteran coach and their education is good also. I have a future in that school,” he added.
Ugsang, who will be arriving today, will join a USC squad that is scrambling to get their team in shape. They were recently ousted from the Cesafi’s preseason tournament, the Partner’s Cup, after winning just two of their six games.
Several Cesafi schools, notably Southwestern University and USJ-R, had hotly pursued Ugsang but USC eventually won, mainly because of his relationship with newly installed head coach Rommel Rasmo and the team’s chief medical officer and conditioning expert, Dr. Rhoel Dejano.
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