BEING in a family of golfers has not stopped Anton Asistio from pursuing his passion for basketball.
The 21-year-old Ateneo guard said basketball has always been his favorite sport, which is quite odd for a member of a golf-playing clan that includes former pro Tony Boy 'Tonton' Asistio and former national player Tonlits Asistio.
“I tried to play golf before for fun but it didn’t catch my interest because when I was a kid, basketball na talaga ‘yung sport ko,” said Asistio, who learned basketball when he was in Grade 3.
The 5-8 Blue Eagles point guard said his dad never forced him to play golf, and instead encouraged him to pursue whatever sport he wants.
“Siguro ‘yung dad ko, pinapabayaan niya ako. I’m sure he is going to support me sa sport that I wanted to play. Basketball talaga ‘yung first love ko,” Asistio said.
There has been no regrets so far for the spunky playmaker, who has improved by leaps and bounds after spending one season with the reserves.
With a team-best 10.8-point average per game, Asistio has become an integral part of young Ateneo squad that is on rebuilding mode following the graduation of longtime star Kiefer Ravena.
Asistio was at his best on Saturday, scoring a season-high 21 points in leading the Blue Eagles to an 84-69 victory over University of the East.
But Asistio said scoring is the farthest in his mind.
“I’m not really thinking of scoring,” said Asistio. “I just want to be aggressive, try to run the system, and find the open guy.”
Asistio’s improved play came as no surprise for Ateneo head coach Sandy Arespacochaga.
“Anton has really worked hard on his game. He bulked up and he has worked really hard. We are not really surprised with Anton’s performance,” said Arespacochaga, who is glad to see the Ateneo bench step up after Aaron Black was sidelined by a foot injury.
“It’s a credit not just to Anton but the other guys. We lost Aaron, one of our dependable guys, and Anton stepped up. Other guys have stepped up. That’s what we are looking for," he added.
"We are a young team and we want to see guys improving."