LETRAN Knights guard Bonbon Batiller had an NCAA Season 95 debut to forget.
Playing in just his first two games this year due to a lengthy recovery from shoulder surgery, the graduating guard was a lineup afterthought, averaging 2.0 points and 3.0 turnovers in just 8.4 minutes a game.
That changed the very next week as Batiller led the Knights with 14 points in a 55-43 win against JRU.
He proved that was no fluke as he dropped 22 markers three days later in a thrilling 82-80 overtime win against a Perpetual Help squad led by former UE backcourt partner Edgar Charcos.
Letran rose to a 3-1 win-loss slate, good for fourth in the league standings behind undefeated squads San Beda, St. Benilde and San Sebastian.
Because of his resurgence, Batiller earned the season’s second Chooks-to-Go Collegiate Press Corps NCAA Player of the Week award.
The 25-year-old from General Santos City won the vote over Letran teammate Ato Ular, San Sebastian’s RK Ilagan and Allyn Bulanadi, Lyceum’s Jayson David, San Beda’s James Canlas and JRU’s Agem Miranda for the weekly award handed out by scribes from print and online outlets covering the league.
Even before the season started, Letran head coach Bonnie Tan had always been looking for Batiller’s missing spark. Safe to say, his veteran ward has responded well to the challenge.
“Para sa akin, si coach Bonnie, talagang yung mga leaders, china-challenge niya. Talagang kailangan naming mag-step up,” he said.
“Kaya para sakin, gagawin ko ang lahat para maabot ko yung expectation niya rin sa akin para makatulong ako sa team as a leader at senior.”