By NIKOLE JAVIER
The massive recruitment of the University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons produced another positive result as three standouts from La Salle Green Hills have confirmed their commitment to the UAAP Season 84 men’s basketball champion.
The trio of Josh Coronel, Seven Gagate and Luis Pablo were welcomed to the team in Nowhere to go but UP’s Facebook page on Friday afternoon, March 17.
The highly sought players just recently competed in the recently concluded NCAA juniors basketball where LSGH lost to Letran in a sweep of their best-of-three finals series.
“Their accomplishments on the court are well documented, but what has really impressed us is their character and maturity,” said UPMBT director for operations Bo Perasol.
“We feel extremely blessed to have Luis, Josh, and Seven on our team.”
Not only the three players made name for themselves in the juniors, with Pablo being hailed as the NCAA juniors MVP and Gagate being included in the Mythical Five, but all three have been members of the Gilas U-18.
Coronel, for his part, had to sit out last season’s action due to an ACL injury.
The Fighting Maroons are still reeling from the departure of big man Carl Tamayo, who has struck a two-year deal in Japan B.League with the Ryukyu Golden Kings.
The Maroons have reached the finals of the premier collegiate league the last three editions.
Earlier this year though, UP has also announced the commitment of Francis “LeBron” Lopez to the team to further bolster their lineup in Season 86 later this year for a redemption campaign.
UP head tactician Goldwin Monteverde said the three rookies “have the potential to contribute to the team’s efforts to remain competitive next season.”
“It all boils down to hard work. If all of our rookies take their cue from the veterans and work hard, our team will do well,” said Monteverde.