De La Salle University will sit four of its freshmen for the UAAP Season 84 Men’s Basketball Tournament.
The Green Archers have placed Raven Cortez, Penny Estacio, Aaron Buensalida, and JC Macalalag as their COVID replacements, team officials have confirmed to Tiebreaker Times.
Cortez, a 6-foot-7 big man out of De La Salle-Zobel, was not able to play his senior year in high school due to knee issues.
Estacio is a 5-foot-11 guard out of Far Eastern University-Diliman.
Buensalida is a 6-foot-5 forward from Nazareth School of National University, who is just 19 years old, while Macalalag is a 6-foot-2 swingman from La Salle Green Hills.
La Salle can only activate Cortez, Estacio, Buensalida, or Macalalag if one student-athlete tests positive for COVID-19. If the reserve plays in more than three games, it will count as one playing year.
Leading the Green Archers this season is two-time Mythical Team member Justine Baltazar. Baltazar will be an elder statesman in the league as he is 25 years old.
Serving as team captain will be Kurt Lojera.
Forming La Salle’s backcourt are Evan Nelle, Mark Nonoy, and Deschon Winston. Holdovers from the Season 82 team are Joaqui Manuel, Francis Escandor, Ralph Cu, and Donn Lim.
Rookies for the team are Michael and Benjamin Phillips, CJ Austria, Emman Galman, Paul Turco, and Bright Nwanko.
La Salle’s first assignment will be University of the East on Saturday at 7:00 PM.