A few years ago, there was a boy from Masbate who dreamed of representing his country as a member of its national men’s football team – the Azkals. Fortunately, University of the Philippines was able to help with a step closer to that dream after taking the now teen-aged boy to its folds. That boy is named Rogie Maglinas.
UP is considered one of the best football programs in the UAAP right now having won five of its 16 championships in the last decade. The Fighting Maroons have dropped out of the top three just once in that same span. And in his two-year stint with the Maroons, Maglinas may have not won a title yet, but he was a vital cog in UP’s run in those seasons.
According to fellow UP Maroons winger and batchmate, Lou Rafanan, Maglinas has the potential to make it big. Rafanan believes that Maglinas is the “most skilled player in the team.” On the pitch, you can rely on Rogie to save the day for you as a teammate. Lou said, “As a teammate, gagawin niya lahat para saluhin niya mga mali mo.” Rafanan ended, “Siya yung pinaka-nage-extra sa ‘min … almost every day.”
However, the dream suddenly took a back seat a few months ago. Rogie started to develop a lump on his neck, which was recently confirmed to be a form of rhabdomyosarcoma. Rhabdomyosarcoma or RMS is a rare cancer, specifically a sarcoma (connective tissue cancer), which is thought to arise from skeletal muscle progenitors. Nevertheless, Rogie is blessed to have a family in the UP football teams that are determined to help him get through with this adversity.
In the recently-concluded Philippine University Games, his teammates dedicated their campaign to Maglinas, bringing birth to the hashtag #ForRogie. With thoughts of having their brother fighting a tougher challenge, the Fighting Maroons turned a first-game setback against National University to a revenge win in the Final and took their first-ever UniGames plum.
With this initiative, the UP men’s and women’s football teams, with the cooperation of the UP College of Human Kinetics Student Council and Walking for Fitness PE Classes staged a benefit walk from the campus to Marikina Riverbanks, last Sunday, November 8. The said football teams, with the support of The Corporate Football League, will alson be hosting a 7-a-side Open Play Football on Sunday, November 15, for the same cause.
You can donate any amount; just contact any member of the Fighting Maroons football teams. All proceeds will go to the treatment and medical expenses of Rogie.
**Photo provided by Bob Guerrero
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