Ronmey Paciente may have only played one season for Far Eastern University-Diliman but he cemented his legacy by scoring twice against the De La Salle Zobel to win the Baby Tamaraws the UAAP Season 85 High School Boys’ Football Championship — their 11th consecutive crown in the competition.
The former Ateneo de Davao standout put the ball at the back of the net dramatically in the 90+8 and 128 minutes to break the hearts of the Junior Archers and their fans in the UP Diliman Football Field after Umi Abelarde’s early goal threatened to end the Baby Tamaraws’ championship streak.
“Well, overall, as time passed by, naging okay lang naman ang performance sa second half. Hindi kami nag give up kahit down one goal kami,” said Paciente, who came on for teammate Christian Lajot in the 81st minute.
“Hindi ko inakala na ipapasok ako nang maaga kase usually sa last games, hindi ako nakakapasok nang more than 20 minutes and of course, kaba ang naramdaman ko while naglalaro.”
For both goals, Paciente was at the right place at the right time to score them for the Baby Tamaraws. He took advantage of the Junior Archers being exhausted after the latter desperately tried to defend their narrow one-goal lead for most of the regulation time.
Despite being the hero of the match for FEU, the 18-year-old standout felt that the team and its rich history were more important than his goals.
“Hindi ko naman iniisip na ako dapat yung mag-go-goal. Ang iniisip ko nun ay ano yung ma-co-contribute ko sa team. Okay lang naman hindi ako maka-goal as long as maka-contribute ako, maka-assist,” he said.
“Pang 11-peat na yun tapos kung matalo kami nun, sayang yung efforts ng mga nakaraan na seniors namin.”
Now that his career at the high school level is over, Paciente now looks forward to proving himself at the collegiate level.
Since he only committed to the FEU program in the juniors division, he is open to joining other schools who can give him the platform he needs to reach his ultimate goal.
“One year lang yung contract ko here sa FEU,” explained Paciente. “Actually, stepping stone lang ito for me kasi matagal ko ng iniisip na gusto kong sumali sa pro if may chance in God’s will.
“It depends kase gusto ko pong mag tryout sa iba kasi, as I said, one year lang yung contract ko dito sa FEU. Hindi ako guaranteed na next school year dito pa rin ako sa FEU.”