TEARS began to fall for Glenn Khobuntin the moment he completed a three-point play that all but sealed National University’s title-clinching win over Far Eastern University on Wednesday at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
Part of it had something to do with the Bulldogs finally ending 60 years of futility and being crowned UAAP champions again. But most of all, it was tears of joy after being reunited with parents Dante and Jocelyn in this most important moment of his college career.
“Doon ko lang nalaman na nandoon sila,” said Khobuntin of that poignant moment.
Khobuntin admitted he rarely sees his parents, even during holidays, so much so that it came as a big surprise for him to see them watching the game at ringside of the Big Dome.
“Nagta-trabaho kasi sila sa probinsya. Minsan nga hindi ko na sila nakikita (kapag Pasko) dahil may D-League. Kaya masaya ako,” he said.
“Si Sir Hans (Sy) ata ‘yung nagdala sa kanila para makanood sila,” he disclosed.
Khobuntin scored 10 points in the 75-58 win. But more importantly though, the former Letran Squire played tough defense on Far Eastern University star Mac Belo.
Incidentally, Khobuntin is the lone NU player who was already around during the lean years of the team after coming on board in 2010, during which the Bulldogs finished in fifth place.
“Sobrang hirap kasi lahat ng tao, ‘yun ang sasabihin sayo. Pero nagtitiwala naman ako sa coach. Nasa higher level sila dati kaya alam namin kung saan kami makakarating,” said Khobuntin in recalling his first year with the team.
And that’s the reason why he was mighty glad he was able to go through seeing the team rising from the bottom to the top in his final season with the Bulldogs.
“May makukuwento ka kung saan ka nagsimula,” said Khobuntin. “Hindi ko naman naisip na mag-give up kasi nandyan naman sila coach, kung ano ‘yung sinasabi niya, doon lang ako. Nagbunga naman ang paghihirap.”