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32nd SEA Games

Jerom Lastimosa grateful to be part of Gilas’ ‘redeem team’

In a triumphant homecoming, Jerom Lastimosa returned to the Philippines as a champion after Gilas Pilipinas Men clinched the gold medal in the 32nd Southeast Asian Games men’s basketball tournament held in Cambodia.

For Lastimosa, this achievement marked the pinnacle of his career, allowing him to bring pride to the nation and make Filipinos across the globe proud. Expressing his gratitude, he acknowledged God for the opportunity to represent the country in the SEA Games and extended his thanks to the unwavering support of Filipino fans.

“Well, first of all, papasalamat ako kay God na binigay niya ‘tong opportunity na ‘to which is makalaro ako sa SEA Games, and second I just want to thank to all the Filipino fans na nandiyan lagi na naka-supporta sa amin,” said the 24-year-old floor general out of Dumaguete City.

“So I think this is my biggest achievement sa buhay ko. And super blessed kasi part ako sa Gilas family, and ‘yun nga first time kong nagka-gold, so it was an honor para sa akin na maka-gold ako kahit bago pa ako sa Gilas.

“So thankful and sobrang saya kasi nabigyan namin ng gold ‘yung bansa natin,” he added.

Lastimosa’s journey to the SEA Games was not without its twists.

Initially not invited to practice with Gilas despite being part of the 28-man pool, Lastimosa received a call from the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas on April 26, as some players became unavailable for the tournament. This turn of events surprised not only Lastimosa but also his coach at Adamson University, Nash Racela, who expressed his astonishment and joy at the achievements of his player.FIBAWC-LASTIMOSA-JEROM-WINSTON-SCHONNY-4236 Jerom Lastimosa grateful to be part of Gilas' 'redeem team' 32nd SEA Games AdU Basketball Gilas Pilipinas News  - philippine sports news

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“Of course, I know Adamson as a community is very, very happy, and very, very proud of Jerom’s achievement. Ako naman as a coach, I’m really surprised that initially, they did not invite him to practice with Gilas, despite being part of the pool. Nakakatuwa lang na somehow because they were forced to – they invited him,” shared Racela.

“And nakakatuwa because si Jerom was able to prove himself. And, yeah, we’re very proud of how he played against ‘yung international competition, those are really elite players that he played against, so diba nakakatuwa, so he somehow, he represented the Adamson community well.”

Throughout the tournament, Lastimosa showcased his skills, contributing an average of 7.4 points, 3.6 rebounds, 0.8 assists, 0.4 blocks, and 0.2 steals per game. His standout performance came against Singapore, where he tallied 12 points, five rebounds, and an assist.

Reflecting on his experience, Lastimosa emphasized that he learned valuable lessons, even from the smallest details that played crucial roles in the matches. He highlighted the final game against Cambodia for the gold medal as particularly impactful, where he made a significant defensive contribution alongside his four points, four rebounds, an assist, a steal, and a block.

“Even the little things matter, like sprinting to the corner during our transition offense. Especially in our last game, when Coach Chot Reyes assigned me to guard one of the opposing team’s best players. Those little things can help the team win,” Lastimosa explained.

The SEA Games proved to be a significant learning experience for Lastimosa, providing him with valuable insights into his first-ever participation in the tournament. He commended the guidance and mentorship of coaches Chot Reyes and Tim Cone, as well as the presence of seasoned professionals in the team, which contributed to his growth as a player and prepared him for the upcoming UAAP Season 86.

32nd-SEA-Games-Basketball-Gilas-Men Jerom Lastimosa grateful to be part of Gilas' 'redeem team' 32nd SEA Games AdU Basketball Gilas Pilipinas News  - philippine sports news

(C) PSC-POC Media Group

“Yes of course, ang dami kong natutunan, and maganda experience para sa akin,” Lastimosa affirmed. “Kasi ‘yun nga kasama ko mga pros, lalong lalo na sa mga coaches namin which is sila Coach Chot, sila Coach Tim Cone.

“And for sure madadala ko ‘to UAAP, ia-apply ko ‘yun lahat ng mga na-experience ko dun sa SEA Games Cambodia, for sure mai-apply ko ‘yun sa this coming season namin sa UAAP.”

Written By

College student in San Beda University, part of the San Beda Red Sea Lions Swim Team, and likes watching anime

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