He was taken in 18th round of PBA D-League draft at No. 76 overall, but Dahrrel Caranguian is no pushover
Cagayan native Dahrrel Caranguian was the last player picked in the PBA D-League draft at No. 76 overall.

HIS was the last name called during the PBA D-League draft on Tuesday - the lone man taken in the 18th round at No. 76 overall.

But this guy is definitely not a nuisance draft hopeful.

In fact, Dahrrel Caranguian has only recently set the single-game scoring record in the Naascu (National Athletic Association of Schools, Colleges and Universities) by scoring 46 for De Ocampo Memorial College in a game against Philippine Christian University last season.

The 5-foot-8 shooting guard ended up as the last to be picked from among 108 hopefuls in the D-League draft at the PBA Cafe in Pasig City. He was among six players picked up one after the other by Batangas from the 13th round on before the rookie team finally passed to end the proceedings.

Still, he was thankful to get a chance to play in the developmental league, vowing to repay the faith of the team that drafted him.

“Sobra akong thankful sa Batangas team at dinraft nila ako,” said Caranguian. “Kung magagamit man ako sa team nila, ipapakita ko sa kanila na hindi sila nagkamali sa pag-draft sa akin.” 

[See full PBA D-League draft list]

The 22-year-old said he actually had no idea that the D-League draft took place on Tuesday. He was in his hometown of Enrile, Cagayan when the draft was being held, having thought all along that the proceedings were already held December 12.

He thought all along that no team had drafted him - and only learned about Batangas' decision to draft him when a teammate tagged him on a Facebook post.

“Akala ko hindi na ako na-draft kasi sabi nung una, (ang sabi) sa December 12 ang drafting. Tapos nabigla na lng po ako [na na-draft ako],” Caranguian said in an interview with SPIN.ph, hours after being drafted by Batangas.

Caranguian is no longer new to amateur commercial leagues, having played for Cagayan Valley in the PCBL.

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Back in 2012, while in a training camp in Tuguegarao with his teammates in the Cagayan team to the Palarong Pambansa, Caranguian was spotted by then-Cagayan Valley assistant coach Toto Dojilio, also the head coach of De Ocampo Memorial College in the Naascu.

“Nung fourth year high scool ko kasi, nag-training kami sa Tuguegarao para sa Palarong Pambansa. Sakto dun din nag-training ‘yung unang pasok ng D-League ‘yung Cagayan. Nakita siguro ako ni coach Toto tapos ininvite ako sa De Ocampo,” Caranguian related.

[See Incomplete documents blamed for Brickman slide from top pick to fourth-round draftee]

With a stint in the PBA D-League one of the requirements for players wanting to turn pro, Caranguian decided to apply for the draft.

Now he wants to seize the opportunity at Batangas - and hopefully move a step closer to his lifelong dream.

“Dream ko po talaga na makalaro sa PBA,” said Caranguian.

Follow the writer on Twitter: @reubensports