Heroes from the past NCAA and UAAP seasons were honored in the 2019 Chooks-to-Go Collegiate Press Corps Awards last Monday at the Amelie Hotel Manila.
The preeminent student-athletes who showcased their talent and workmanship at the highest level of collegiate sports were gathered in the annual event held by the the Collegiate Press Corps, made up of print and online reporters covering the beat.
Ateneo’s Thirdy Ravena was hailed as Basketball Player of the Year after leading the Blue Eagles to their second straight UAAP title.
“It’s a great feeling to be recognized, especially for an award like this. Lahat ng mga pinaghirapan ko, finally nagpay-off,” said Ravena. “But in all honesty, I owe this all to my teammates. Of course, also the hardworking coaching staff of our team. We’ve come this far because of them.”
Ravena joins the elite company of Mac Belo, Jeron Teng, Ben Mbala, Robert Bolick, and brother Kiefer as players who have received the coveted award.
“I also dedicate this award to my family, my friends, and those who have supported us in this journey. Honestly, I’m so surprised. I’m still in shock,” said the second-generation star.
The King Eagle was also named part of the All-Collegiate Team together with San Beda’s Robert Bolick, Perpetual’s Prince Eze, and the UP pair of Bright Akhuetie and Paul Desiderio.
It was also an historic night for volleyball as the sport’s best individual performers were recognized for the very first time.
UST’s Sisi Rondina and Arellano’s Regine Arocha became the first recipients of the SportsVision Volleyball Player of the Year award.
Rondina capped off her stellar UAAP career by winning MVP in both beach and indoor volleyball in the same season, all while carrying the Golden Tigresses to their first Finals in eight years. Arocha, meanwhile, took the spotlight in the NCAA after helping the Lady Chiefs capture a three-peat while also winning the Finals MVP award.
The Award of Excellence was then handed out to the National U Lady Bulldogs for their rare five-peat, including a record 80 wins in a row. UP, meanwhile, earned a Special Citation for their inspiring Cinderella run as they ended the school’s 32-year Finals drought.
Coaches Boyet Fernandez of San Beda and Tab Baldwin of Ateneo were deemed top tacticians in the NCAA and UAAP, respectively, after leading their respective squads to championships.
Other awardees were Pivotal Players Angelo Kouame of Ateneo and Javee Mocon of San Beda as well as Impact Players CJ Perez of Lyceum and Sean Manganti of Adamson.