SAN BEDA COL­LEGE RED LIONS

“IT CAN’T BE ANY BET­TER.” THIS WAS HOW A TRI­UMPHANT FRANKIE LIM BE­GAN DE­SCRIB­ING HOW HE WAS FEEL­ING RIGHT AF­TER HE LED SAN BEDA COL­LEGE TO ITS 15TH MEN’S BAS­KET­BALL CHAM­PI­ONSHIP IN THE 86TH SEA­SON OF THE NCAA LAST YEAR. IN HIS FOURTH SEA­SON AS THE RED L

Rebound Magazine - - NCAA PREVIEW - by An­ton Roxas

There are only two play­ers in the en­tire league who have ex­pe­ri­enced win­ning three NCAA cham­pi­onships. One of them is Dave Marcelo, who was also the only player on last year’s team that started all 18 games. The other player is Garvo Lanete, who will have an ex­panded role this up­com­ing sea­son. Not only will he re­main the squad’s lead­ing scorer (14.4 PPG), he also has to be their leader. It was a heart­warm­ing feel­ing for all Bedan fans to see last year’s “King Lion”, Borgie Her­mida, cel­e­brate with a vic­tory lap af­ter spend­ing 16 long years in­side the Men­di­ola cam­pus. At the con­clu­sion of the 87th Sea­son of the NCAA, Marcelo and Lanete would like to grad­u­ate on top as well.

Her­mida’s re­place­ment is a tal­ented young kid who hails from Davao City named Baser Amer. In his two sea­sons with the Red Cubs, he helped the team win the NCAA Ju­niors crown both times (for leg­endary coach Ato Badolato in 2009 and Brit Reroma in 2010.). He’s a two-time Myth­i­cal Five mem­ber and a two-time Fi­nals Most Valu­able Player. Also in­cluded in his im­pres­sive ré­sumé is an MVP award for NCAA Sea­son 86 where he av­er­aged 15.3 PPG, 8.3 RPG, 11.7 APG and 2.4 SPG.

Rome De La Rosa re­sumes his role as the team’s pri­mary de­fen­sive stop­per on the perime­ter while 6’5” Kyle Pas­cual looks to im­prove on last year’s num­bers (3.0 PPG and 2.3 RPG) in his sec­ond sea­son with the Red Lions.

Bench

The San Beda bench is the envy of all op­pos­ing teams in the NCAA. Al­though many of these play­ers are very much ca­pa­ble of

be­com­ing starters on this team, Coach Lim prefers to have them come off the bench to give op­po­nents no respite at all.

Vet­eran Power For­ward Jake Pas­cual (6’3”) will come in to main­tain the first group’s phys­i­cal­ity with an anx­ious David Se­merad (6’5”) right af­ter him, wait­ing for his turn to grab re­bounds and bang bod­ies in the paint. David’s twin brother, An­thony (6’4”) had an im­pres­sive rookie sea­son (10.0 PPG in the NCAA fi­nals) and will look to pro­vide even more points off the bench this year.

When these tall men haul in the re­bounds, an op­por­tu­nity to ig­nite a fast­break is al­ways an op­tion. Point guards Anjo Caram and Paolo Pon­te­jos will be ready to push the ball up the floor and make op­pos­ing teams sprint back on de­fense. Af­ter tak­ing only 12 at­tempts from the three-point area last sea­son, Mar Vil­la­her­mosa has put in the work to im­prove his longdis­tance game. Ex­pect him to be Lanete’s pri­mary back-up at the shoot­ing guard po­si­tion. But, the big sur­prise this year for San Beda fans might just be Melo Lim.

Coach­ing

Frankie Lim is a proven win­ner. He al­ready has three NCAA cham­pi­onships un­der his belt. His over­all NCAA ca­reer win­ning per­cent­age is ex­cel­lent (86.5% = 64 wins, 10 losses). How­ever, the most im­pres­sive thing about him is his abil­ity to make his­play­ers fol­low his in­struc­tions. Af­ter an ex­tremely phys­i­cal Game 1 in last year’s NCAA Fi­nals against San Se­bas­tian Col­lege-Reco­le­tos, Lim told his play­ers, “Max­i­mum tol­er­ance. Let’s be big­ger than them.”

In­tan­gi­bles

In Sea­son 86, Su­dan Daniel proved to ev­ery­one that noth­ing could stop him from de­liv­er­ing an NCAA Cham­pi­onship to San Beda Col­lege. How­ever, in a very un­for­tu­nate in­ci­dent dur­ing the sum­mer, the reign­ing league MVP suf­fered a torn an­te­rior cru­ci­ate lig­a­ment (ACL) and has elected to have surgery to re­pair the in­jury. Sud­denly, a new chal­lenge has pre­sented it­self to the Red Lions. Can they win with­out “Su­per­man?”

Crit­ics have said that San Beda’s ac­com­plish­ment of win­ning 4 NCAA cham­pi­onships in the past decade was pri­mar­ily due to the pres­ence of hav­ing a for­eign player on their team (Nige­rian Sam Ekwe from Sea­son 82-84 and Amer­i­can Su­dan Daniel in Sea­son 86.). This year, the Red Lions will pa­rade an “Al­lFilipino” lineup with an op­por­tu­nity to si­lence those crit­ics once and for all.

Out­look

The in­clu­sion of the Lyceum of the Philip­pines-Manila as a guest team in NCAA Sea­son 87 will once again make the league a 10-team tour­na­ment. There­fore, a po­ten­tial 20-0 sweep is a new record wait­ing to be ac­com­plished.

If Su­dan was healthy, San Beda would be very ca­pa­ble of mak­ing his­tory again. How­ever, Su­dan is out for the sea­son. There­fore, San Beda’s chances of ac­com­plish­ing this feat have dropped.

Nev­er­the­less, the Red Lions are still a very pow­er­ful team. The NCAA ti­tle is still theirs to de­fend.

C PF SF SG

PG Dave Marcelo

Kyle Pas­cual Rome De La Rosa Garvo Lanete

Baser Amer

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Philippines

© PressReader. All rights reserved.