When Chico Manabat entered the Paco Arena on Thursday, he had one goal — to end his stint with Centro Escolar University on a golden note.
Yes, it was the youthful head coach’s last dance with the Scorpions.
Though he did not divulge the reason why this stint ended abruptly, Manabat stressed that he was able to fulfill his promise of giving the school its first UCBL championship since 2016.
“I fulfilled all my promises to CEU and siguro, it’s time for me to rest muna and focus sa family ko,” shared the husband of Akari blocker Dindin Santiago-Manabat to Tiebreaker Times.
It was just three years ago when Manabat took over the CEU basketball program after Jeff Napa was named head coach of National University.
In his only season with the Scorpions, he made sure that his team dominated.
CEU romped the competition, winning all 14 of its games by a wide margin of 31.07 points per game which was capped by a 92-82 Game Two win over Olivarez College.
“Of course, I’m still grateful to CEU for giving me this opportunity to show what I can do as a head coach. Siguro, our goals don’t align lang siguro but at least I was able to give the championship to CEU,” the product of NU expressed.
“Kahit ganun yung katapusan, napakita ko ang kakayahan ko at napatunayan ko sa sarili ko yung totoong capabilities ko.”
Manabat does not know what lies ahead.
Still, he remains grateful to CEU for giving him the break he wanted.
“Thank you to CEU, the management, the staff, and the players,” he said.
“I love you all!”