The winner-take-all match between University of the East and University of Santo Tomas in the UAAP Season 48 Finals will always be remembered for the classic shootout between Allan Caidic and Pido Jarencio.
Thirty-six long years have already passed, but Caidic hasn’t forgotten anything from his duel for the ages with Jarencio, which took place inside a packed Araneta Coliseum.
“Nakakatuwa nga kasi Pido is one of my closest friends ever since,” Caidic said in his Hoop Coaches International session by Flying V and Blackwater.
“Halos sabay kami niyan. Mag-kumpare kami.”
Caidic and Jarencio were pitted against each other since they were two of the best collegiate hoopers of their time.
Few, however, know they have a deep friendship — formed through their tour of duty for flag and country.
The two were members of the famed Northern Consolidated Cement-backed national team program. And, in fact, they were staying in one place — the quarters provided by the NCC — back then.
So, there was plenty of ribbing and teasing while in the midst of that title bout, recalled Caidic with a smile.
“Nung time na ‘yun, nasa quarters kami nag-stay ni Pido ng NCC. Talagang kantiyawan kami before the game,” he said. “Pagdating ng game, laban talaga.
“After the game ulit, magkikita kami.”
Indeed, they fought as hard as they could in that rubber match where NCC head coach Ron Jacobs and former UE chief think-tank Pilo Pumaren were part of the crowd that witnessed history unfold.
Jarencio came out on top of Caidic in the head-to-head battle, exploding for 48 points. Caidic, meanwhile, had 46.
But unfortunately for the “Fireman” and the Glowing Goldies, the “Triggerman” and the Red Warriors reigned victorious, 114-99, giving the Recto-based university its 17th UAAP championship.
“Medyo sinwerte kami,” said Caidic, who won the second of his three UAAP MVP awards in 1984.
For Caidic, what made the difference in the clincher was that the Red Warriors had more support than the Glowing Goldies. Back then, UE had the likes of Jerry Codiñera and Boycie Zamar then.
“During my time, maraming tumulong sa akin, marami rin akong mga kasamang nag-deliver,” said the 56-year-old Caidic, who helped the Road Warriors capture three UAAP championships.
His side may have won that match, but the PBA Hall of Famer has nothing but high regard to his good pal.
“Si Pido, talagang one-man wrecking crew ‘yun. Mabigat din talaga ang scoring ni Pido eh. Mahirap i-stop.”