UST back in final-four after four-year drought

The Growling Tigers roared to their loudest this season 82 (KC Cruz/ESPN 5)

By: Leobert Julian A. de la Peña

After four long years, UST is back in the final four.

A series of heartbreaks and unfortunate events led them to where they are right now, and the addition of veteran and prized coach Aldin Ayo proved to be the missing piece to the puzzle.

A team composed of star rookies, coach Ayo was the pivotal voice who created the cohesiveness among the different personalities the team was built around.

The role coach Ayo took was very crucial to the team, as he was able to find a common ground with the team despite the different backgrounds of his players, creating a culture wherein there’s no discrimination whether you are from the Metro or province, they are all the same.

The team was led by CJ Cansino, a sophomore player named team captain who did not play most of last year’s season due to a knee injury, and is on his personal road to redemption this UAAP season 82.

The deadly combo of “The Probinsyanos” in Rhenz Abando and former Hua Siong College of Iloilo superstar Mark Nonoy took the league by storm with their speed, athleticism, and defensive prowess.

Veterans Rhenz Subido and Zach Huang served as the team’s stabilizers who are always there to deliver when the team needed a boost.

Last but not least, center Soulemane Chabi Yo is a force to be reckoned with underneath, with his versatile skill-set and his perimeter shooting.

This season 82, the UST “mayhem” offense has reached the final four, and everybody is all eyes on this young and talented team if they can answer the call and deliver under the bright lights.