Jhonard “Demonkite” Caranto and coach Karl “Giee” Barrientos hoisted another trophy together on Sunday night.
“Sobrang special neto kasi ito yung achievement namin na dalawa bukod sa MPL Season Nine saka sa amateurs e,” Demonkite shared to Tiebreaker Times after RSG PH’s 4-0 win over RRQ Hoshi in the 2022 Mobile Legends: Bang Bang Southeast Asia Cup grand finals, Sunday.
Unknown to many, Demonkite and coach Giee dominated the amateur scene together when they led JNA Esports to multiple titles such as the Tambay League Invitational, Just ML Cup: Challengers Edition, and the Juicy Legends 2021 Q2 tournament, to name a few, last year.
This eventually became their ticket to the professional scene as they were both scouted by RSG PH head coach Brian “Panda” Lim to join the organization in its debut season in the MPL Philippines Season Eight.
“From amateurs, magkasama kami ni Kite. JNA [Esports] days pa yun. Doon kami sa amateurs hanggang sa na-discover kami [ni Demonkite], tinawagan kami tapos ni-recruit kami ni coach Panda,” Giee told Tiebreaker Times in a separate interview.
Transitioning to the pros has been a rough ride for both coach Giee and Demonkite.
And it definitely showed as RSG PH, despite showing glimpses of their potential throughout Season Eight, capped off the season at 5th-6th place after getting booted out by Nexplay EVOS via sweep in the first round of the playoffs.
“Season Eight nag-struggle kami, maraming ups and downs. Then Season Nine, we prepared and the unexpected happened – nag-champion kami,” said Giee.
“Yung naging journey namin ni coach Giee throughout my whole career is yung tiwala namin sa isa’t isa grabe talaga.
“Yung bonding din namin, talagang kapag nada-down ako chini-cheer up ako ni coach Giee. Kunwari si coach Giee naman yung nada-down, chini-cheer up ko naman siya. Lagi kaming mag-kasama sa mga pinagdadaanan namin,” narrated Demonkite.
Now, after a stellar campaign in the amateurs followed by a roller coaster transition to the pros, Demonkite and coach Giee are champions once again – and they could not thank JNA Esports enough for helping them get to this point.
“Nagpapasalamat ako doon sa mga taong bumubuo ng JNA sila Boss Jacob, yung mga teammates ni Kite noon na grabe yung sipag at tiyaga na mag-champion kami sa amateurs,” said Giee.