Robert Bolick ended his collegiate career just the way he wanted: By beating the best.
Back in Game One of the NCAA Season 94 Seniors Basketball Finals, the reigning Collegiate Player of the Year felt empty. In a perfect world, Bolick had wanted to play one more series against CJ Perez – his perfect foil for the last two years.
“Siyempre gusto ko yung best niya, gusto ko yung pinaka-best niya para makapag-compete.”
After all, every hero needs his villain.
If Batman had the Joker, Larry Bird had Magic Johnson, and Manny Pacquiao had Juan Manuel Marquez, Bolick had Perez. And for the last two years, Bolick has played some of his finest all-around games against Perez.
Monday afternoon proved to be their final encounter, with Bolick coming out on top to give San Beda their 22nd overall Seniors Basketball crown.
And the 23-year-old could not help but throw a jab at the critics who have been saying that they only beat Lyceum in Game One because Perez was not there.
“Fifty-six nga lang sila ngayon eh. Mas maganda nga yung laro nila nung Game One eh.
“Siguro naging advantage lang namin kasi masyado nilang hinahanap si CJ, so naisipan namin na baka maging stagnant yung offense nila so ginawa naming advantage yun. Medyo nahirapan sila,” Bolick pointed out.
But Bolick gave credit where credit was due. And he could not help but be grateful to Boyet Fernandez for helping him become the best.
“Credit na lang kay coach Boyet and sa coaching staff namin and yung scouting team din namin, maganda yung pinapakita nila so naging prepared talaga kami,” expressed the projected top three pick in the 2018 Rookie Draft.
“Hindi lang physically, mentally din.”