Who’s who in Philippine basketball history (part 12)

By Henry Liao June 29,2020
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Who’s who in Philippine basketball history (part 12)

By Henry Liao June 29,2020
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Our historic look at some of the best roundballers or historic moments in Philippine basketball during the Swinging Seventies continues. Forget them not.

THE QUIZ (part 12)

111 – Long before there was the PBA in 1975, there was the country’s premier commercial league, the MICAA (Manila Industrial and Commercial Athletic Association), which was established in 1938. The MICAA lasted until August 1981 – or six years after the birth of the PBA – with the APCOR Financiers capturing their second straight championship.

Two years before that, in 1979, the Yco Painters won all the commercial leagues they competed in. They were the MICAA competitions, National Seniors tournament, Singapore’s 3rd Phey Yew Kok Cup, and Challenge-to-Champions Cup. Given the choice by Yco owner Don Manolo Elizalde to continue playing for the company-owned Tanduay unit in the PBA after three seasons (1976-78) or start a coaching career with the Painters in the MICAA, all-time Yco great and 1972 Munich Olympian Freddie Webb chose the latter. And what a year it was for Webb in his coaching debut in 1979.

Yco won the MICAA crown that year behind team captain Gregorio Gozum, Elieazer Capacio, Nathaniel Castillo, Joseph Herrera, and ex-Manilabank center Bonifacio de Jesus – all members of the RP Youth Team – and veterans Alberto (Totoy) Gagan, James Payne, Alex Tan (the Grace Christian High School product), Ramoncito (Chito) Bugia, Romulo Gille, Rolando Pineda (a recruit from Frigidaire) and rookies Jose Yango, Joaquin (Chito) Loyzaga, Alexander (Alex) Marquez, Raymundo (Chuck) Barreiro and Roy Conolly.

In the best-of-three finals against Frigidaire, Yco grabbed the series opener, 90-87; lost in the second game, 104-92; and won the winner-take-all third contest, 110-107, at the Rizal Memorial Coliseum on March 17, 1979 to regain the title it had last won in 1975. It was the first of four titles that Yco snared under Webb that year.

Individually, four Painters were cited for their MICAA performances. Yango was named Discovery of the Year and voted to the league’s 12-man Mythical Team along with Pineda, Herrera and Tan. Conolly was given the Sportsmanship Award.

In the photo (the Yco team that sought to retain the title in 1980 but dropped a 2-1 decision to APCOR in the finals), this curly-haired 1975 NCAA MVP from De La Salle wore jersey No. 5 for the Painters. The speedy 5-9 guard known for his twisting, unorthodox lane drives subsequently spent three seasons (1981-83) with Yco Tanduay/Tanduay Rhum in the PBA. What is his name? His initials are AM.

112 – Still on the traditional-steeped MICAA competitions of yesteryears. It was from one season to another with contrasting results. The Yco Painters subdued the Manilabank Goldenbankers in the 1975 finals to snare the MICAA crown.

In 1976, or on Saturday April 10 to be exact, the two clubs met again in the finals at the Rizal Memorial Coliseum. This time around, it was Manilabank, under the guidance of head coach Honesto Mayoralgo for a second consecutive year, which emerged victorious with an 89-82 decision.

Despite enjoying a twice-to-beat advantage, the Bankers made quick work of Yco. Four Bankers made it to the tournament’s 14-man Mythical team: Rudolf (Rudy) Hines (the 1975 MICAA MVP), Fernando (Jojo) De Guzman, Emmanuel Chan and Jaime (Jimmy) Taguines, who netted a team-high 20 points in the finals.Four Painters got in, too: Roberto (Bert) Dela Rosa, Gregorio Gozum, Eleazer (Ely) Capacio and Miguel (Mike) Bilbao.

Emerito Legaspi of Crown Motors was named the league MVP. In the photo, dusky Rudy Hines get a lift from this mammoth 6-8 center of his for the traditional post-title net-ripping. This man-mountain once made a comedic movie entitled “Mong” but he was unable to see action in the PBA.

What is his name? His initials are BDJ.

113 – There were a number of PBA players from the Swinging Seventies that played just one season.

Take this 5-8 guard from Cebu City who played in 1979 with Royal Tru-Orange. He lasted only four games.

He had an elder brother who was a pioneer PBA player from 1975-78 with the same franchise. What is his name?

114 – This 6-3 forward played just two seasons (1979 and 1980) with Royal Tru-Orange in the PBA. Before that, he suited up in the old MICAA with ITM, Villar Records and San Miguel. He was even named to the MICAA Mythical team in 1976.

What is his name? His initials are TG.

115 – He was a San Beda College alum whose loyalty was unquestioned.

This 5-8 guard from Larap, Camarines Norte joined Mariwasa in the old MICAA in 1974 and went on to spend his entire five-year PBA tenure (1975-79) with the franchise, from Mariwasa to Noritake to Honda.

In the photo, he looks like a young Victor Wood, but what is his real identity? His initials are MA.

116 – A product of the University of the East, this 5-11 guard played just 17 games and one season in the PBA. He was with Gilbey’s Gin in 1979.

What is his name?

117 – Bondying, bakit ka nakangiti? This 6-2 guard-forward out of Jose Rizal College played in the PBA in its inaugural presentation in 1975.

What is the name of this Pateros, Rizal native? His initials are JS.

118 – Mukhang artista o artista nga ba? It’s true that he came from a famous movie clan, but he opted to make a living out of basketball playing.

This 5-10.5 forward out of Philippine College of Business and Science was a pioneer player in the PBA in 1975.

What is his name? His initials are RS.

119– Dusky guard Johnny Revilla of the N-Rich Coffee Creamers challenges Quasar’s Israel (Cisco) Oliver for the rebound in Season 2 PBA action in 1976.

In the photo is the bystanding teammate of Revilla who wore jersey No. 17. A native of Batac, Ilocos Norte, this 6-2 guard-center out of Jose Rizal College played in the first three seasons (1975-77) of the PBA with CFC Presto/N-Rich/Great Taste.

What is his name? His initials are OT

120 – This 6-foot forward for Royal Tru-Orange was a pioneer PBA player in 1975. A native of Dumaguete City and a product of Silliman University, he was brought into the Big City by San Miguel for the old MICAA and suited up for three seasons (1975-77) with the San Miguel brand, RTO.

What is his name? His initials are WC.

* * * * *

THE ANSWERS: 111 – Alexander (Alex) Marquez; 112 – Bonifacio (Bonnie) De Jesus; 113 – Paulino (Paul) Velasco; 114 – Teodulfo Gregorio; 115 – Mark Arriola; 116 – Ricafort Mallari; 117 – Jaime (Jimmy) Santos; 118 – Roberto (Jumbo) Salvador; 119 – Oscar (Oca) Tuazon; and 120 – Worley Cuevas.

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