FOR his role in Lyceum’s great escape against Arellano that kept the Pirates’ record unblemished, MJ Ayaay has been picked Chooks to Go NCAA Press Corps Player of the Week by scribes covering the beat.
With the Pirates trailing by 13 late in the game, Ayaay conspired with Perez and JC Marcelino to lead a stunning comeback and set-up a thrilling finish.
And with Perez fouling out with two minutes left, the Ayaay stepped up, scoring five straight points, including the go-ahead basket with 7.3 seconds left as the Pirates remained unbeaten after 12 games.
“Gusto lang talaga namin manalo. Tambak kami, we just stayed positive pa rin,” said Ayaay.
“Kahit natatambakan kami lagi ko lang sila minomotivate. Di kami nawawalan ng pag-asa naniniwala kami na sa atin to, kaya natin to,” he added.
It was a welcome development for coach Topex Robinson as it validated his previous statements that there’s more to this squad than the highly-touted Perez.
“As much as we love having CJ around, this team is more than just a CJ Perez squad,” said Robinson.
“Of course CJ is a very big part of our team, but even he knows that he’s just a part of the team and that we can without him,” he added.
He was picked by writers over Lyceum’s JC Marcelino, San Beda’s JV Mocon, College of St. Benilde’s Edward Dixon and JRU’s Tey Teodoro.