BE like Kevin.
NCAA high school basketball star Rey Nambatac made the first step in his collegiate career by officially committing to stay at Letran and treading the same path as fellow combo guard and former Knights star Kevin Alas.
But the Squires standout is the first to admit that he still has a long way to go before he can fill the big shoes of Alas, who recently declared he is skipping his final year of eligibility with the Knights.
“Yun ang sinasabi ng karamihan na ngayong nawala si Kevin, ako daw yung papalit sa position niya. Pero bago ko makuha `yung role niya, kailangan may mapatunayan muna ako tapos kailangan muna mag-strive hard talaga,” Nambatac told Spin.ph before the start of a recent Letran afternoon practice.
“Hindi ako nagpapadala sa mga ganung usapan kasi ayaw ko naman maging too confident,” added the 18-year-old Cagayan de Oro native, who had 20 points, six rebounds, six assists, and five steals before being named MVP in Team Light’s 92-78 win over Dark in the NBTC High School All-Star Game two weeks ago.
For now, the former NCAA juniors' Rookie of the Year and MVP is just relieved that months of uncertainty over his college of choice are now over after being heavily recruited by most schools both in the UAAP and the NCAA.
“Bawas na sa problema,” said Nambatac, who is planning to take up either finance management or business management in college. “Ang mind set ko na talaga ngayon ay mag-focus sa seniors kasi hindi na biro maglaro dito eh.”
“Sabi nga ng dad ko, back to zero na naman. Kung ano man yung (stature) ko dati sa juniors, wala na yun kasi ibang level na ‘to. Kailangan talaga mag-work hard,” he added.
Like Alas, the 6-foot lefty can play either guard spots, although he expects to spend more time at the `2’ spot in his freshman year, with Mark Cruz still fixed as the starting point guard of the Knights.
Nambatac said he has had a harmonious relationship so far with new mentor Caloy Garcia.
“Okay naman pag-welcome niya sa akin. Binibigyan naman niya ako ng break. Kung ano kulang ko, sinasabihan naman ako,” he said.