PBA rookie Louie Sangalang living the dream, embracing challenge

PBA rookie Louie Sangalang living the dream and embracing the challenge

/ 05:06 PM January 13, 2024

Terrafirma Dyip rookie Louie Sangalang in the PBA Commissioner's Cup.

Terrafirma Dyip rookie Louie Sangalang in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup. –MARLO CUETO/INQUIRER.net

MANILA, Philippines—The term “living the dream” may sound rosy but it’s another thing to actually live it right.

That has been the case for Terrafirma rookie Louie Sangalang.

When Sangalang realized his dream a few months ago in the 2023 PBA Draft, the Letran product recalled being so nervous that he didn’t even know where to walk when his name was called.


“It was the most nervous moment of my career because this is the dream league for players like us,” recalled Sangalang in Filipino after Dyip’s 109-102 loss to Meralco in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup. He scored five points and two rebounds in the defeat.

READ: NCAA: Louie Sangalang working to change slowly but surely for Letran’s benefit

“It’s like the moment didn’t even come to me at first. I didn’t even know where to walk, I was so overwhelmed but I composed myself because it was embarrassing. It’s hard to explain it much but it feels really good.”

Rest is for the weary and Sangalang knew that to be true. After rustling and bustling at Market! Market! that night, waiting for his name to be called, the NCAA champion had just a few hours to soak in the moment.

He took his partner and his kid out to eat and celebrate, slept and when he woke up in the morning, the 6’2 swingman immediately hit the court to train with the Pampanga Lanterns for the MPBL.


Whether it be in the NCAA or the MPBL, the same results showed up for Sangalang as he was part of the Giant Lanterns’ championship run.

Soon after his coronation as MPBL king, Sangalang was finally activated by Dyip.


Undersized four

Terrafirma Dyip rookie Louie Sangalang in the PBA Commissioner's Cup.

Letran standout Louie Sangalang during the PBA Rookie Draft. –MARLO CUETO/INQUIRER.net

Despite being undersized in the forward position, expectations were still high for Sangalang. After all, the bruiser was part of the Knight’s historic three-peat in the NCAA.

With high expectations come tough challenges and Sangalang more than aware of that fact.

“It’s really a challenge. Especially, since sometimes I have to guard imports. When you’re undersized like me you have to double, or even triple your efforts, just to match up with them.”

Sangalang is willing to take on the challenges, though. Diving headfirst into the face of adversity gave the high-intensity players some moments he would never forget.

One of which is being welcomed to the PBA by his longtime idol Ian Sangalang.

“I got to guard Kuya Ian. As for Calvin (Abueva) and June Mar (Fajardo) they didn’t play when we faced Magnolia and San Miguel but Ian was there. He told me, ‘welcome to the PBA. Keep on improving.’ It’s just nice.”

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“Little by little, I’m being inspired to improve so I can be put on the same level.”

TAGS: Letran Knights, Louie Sangalang, Terrafirma Dyip

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