TEAMMATES in the Philippine 3x3 team to the world championship, Thirdy Ravena and Arvin Tolentino are excited to bring their act to the Ateneo Blue Eagles squad in the UAAP.
Ravena and Tolentino were part of the national squad that won the Fiba-Asia Under-18 3x3 Championship last year in Bangkok, earning them the right to play against the world’s best in the world championship of the same age-group tournament in Jakarta.
Both players now represent the future of the rebuilding Blue Eagles, who are counting on the dynamic duo to eventually inherit the mantle from Thirdy's older brother Kiefer Ravena.
While the two players suited up for different schools during their high school years, Ravena and Tolentino said being teammates in the national team will greatly help in their first season with the Blue Eagles.
“It’s a good feeling to have a teammate na kilala ko,” Ravena said. “Both of us are new (with the team) pero since naging teammates na kami, magkakilala na kami. Alam na namin ang laro ng isa’t isa. Hindi na kami magkakapaan."
Tolentino, the former star of San Beda's multi-titled Red Cubs, shares the same sentiment as he looks forward to teaming up with Ravena in the years to come.
“Siyempre masaya kasi kami na ang magkasama sa next five years. Alam na namin ‘yung kaya naming gawin. Sana malaki ang maitulong namin sa team,” said Tolentino.
Ravena and Tolentino have already accomplished a lot in their young career.
Ravena did what his younger brother of Ateneo star Kiefer Ravena failed to do in his high school career when he won the Most Valuable Player award in UAAP Season 76.
Meanwhile, Tolentino led the Red Cubs to their fifth straight NCAA championship after a sweep of Season 89.
When asked what Tolentino can bring to the team, Ravena said the recruiting of the Red Cub big man will only make the team stronger.
Ravena said the 6-5 Tolentino is versatile for his size - an opinion echoed by Ateneo coach Bo Perasol who said the former Red Cubs star is capable of playing all positions on the floor.
“Arvin is an asset to the team. The team needs a big man. Arvin is a versatile big man, he can play the four, sometimes two pa nga. He will bring a big contribution to the team,” Ravena said.
For his part, Tolentino said Ravena will make Ateneo a title contender again as he joins forces with Kiefer.
“Siyempre, sobrang lakas. Siyempre Thirdy Ravena siya eh, dalawang Ravena,” said Tolentino.