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Bolick headlines Lions’ NCAA bid

By: - Reporter / @cedelfptINQ
/ 05:36 AM July 08, 2017

It’s been quite awhile since a local player has created this much buzz heading into the NCAA season.

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With foreign players making their mark in the country’s oldest collegiate league in the past two seasons, the emergence of San Beda guard Robert Bolick as a big-game performer couldn’t have come at a better time.

Not since former NCAA standouts and now PBA stars Calvin Abueva of San Sebastian and Scottie Thompson of Perpetual Help has a player been getting much attention the way Bolick has before the start of the tournament.

A strong finish to last season particularly in the finals against Arellano and a stellar start to 2017 where he captured MVP honors with Cignal in the PBA D-League has put a target on the do-it-all guard’s back going into Season 93.

Bolick wouldn’t want it any other way as the Red Lions begin their title defense against host San Sebastian on Saturday at Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.

“It’s been a challenge for me heading into the season,” said Bolick. “It has made me work harder on my game. I love the pressure that comes with being a favorite.”

Buoyed by Bolick’s constantly improving game, the Lions are still heavy picks even as they face a stern test early against the Stags, who are coming off a strong showing in the pre-season.

For all their experience and firepower, San Beda, which has starters Jayvee Mocon and Davon Potts and foreign players Arnauld Noah and Donald Tankhoua back for this season, is still expected to have its hands full against a San Sebastian team that has developed well under second year coach Egay Macaraya.

“With what I’m seeing, the character of the boys and the character of the team is already there,” said Macaraya, whose team actually posted a 7-2 record in the second round of last season. Their willingness to win is evident.”

Meanwhile a weakened Mapua squad takes on Arellano in the second game at 4 p.m. The Cardinals begin life without former two-time MVP Allwell Oraeme, who has decided to skip Season 93, along with point guard Darrel Menina. Leo Gabo is returning for the Cardinals, who only have 10 players in the lineup.

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For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity.

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TAGS: NCAA, robert bolick, San Beda
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