THE Diamond Season of the UAAP unfolds on Saturday at the SM Mall of Asia (MOA) Arena.
The MOA Arena will be the UAAP’s home at least for this season with most of the league’s games to be held there. This season’s host is National University, which is owned by the same Sy clan that owns SM chain of malls and the MOA Arena.
But while the MOA Arena will be home to the UAAP for the next couple of months, the PBA jumped the gun on the college league by having the inaugural game at the venue last July 7 with the B-Meg-Talk ‘N Text semifinal game in the PBA Governors Cup.
Since the MOA Arena figures to be a significant battle field for Philippine sports in the years to come, it's worth recording the many firsts in the grand stadium for posterity.
The Llamados earned the distinction of being the first team to win an official game there while head coach Tim Cone gets the credit for first winning head coach, which coincidentally also gave him his 700th career win in the PBA.
Here are the other official “firsts” at the MOA Arena from that game:
Field goal made (overall) Paul Harris, Talk ‘N Text
Field goal made (local) Josh Urbiztondo, B-Meg
Field goal miss James Yap, B-Meg
3-point field goal made Jimmy Alapag, Talk ‘N Text
3-point play (overall) Paul Harris, Talk ‘N Text
3-point play (local) Japeth Aguilar, Talk ‘N Text
3-point miss Jimmy Alapag, Talk ‘N Text
Dunk (Overall) Marqus Blakely, B-Meg
Defensive rebound Kelly Williams, Talk ‘N Text
Offensive rebound (overall) Marqus Blakely, B-Meg
Offensive rebound (local) Josh Urbiztondo, B-Meg
Free throw made PJ Simon, B-Meg
Free throw miss Marc Pingris, B-Meg
Assist Jimmy Alapag, Talk ‘N Text
Steal Marc Pingris, B-Meg
Shotblock (overall) Marqus Blakely, B-Meg
Shotblock (local) Ranidel de Ocampo, Talk ‘N Text
Turnover (overall) Paul Harris, Talk ‘N Text
Turnover (local) James Yap, B-Meg
Personal foul Ryan Reyes, Talk ‘N Text
Offensive foul Marc Pingris, B-Meg
Technical foul Chot Reyes, Talk ‘N Text
Still up for grabs for UAAP players and/or coaches are the following:
Dunk (local) ________________________
4-point play ________________________
Good luck UAAP players/coaches!