WITH a promising college career to look forward to, Kyles Lao is preparing himself physically after crowning his high school career with an MVP season in the Metro Manila Tiong Lian Basketball Association (MMTLBA).
The Xavier School star said he has yet to make a commitment to any school, but bared that five-time UAAP men’s basketball champion Ateneo, De La Salle, and University of the Philippines are among those which have expressed interest in recruiting him.
The great interest in recruiting the former PH Youth team stalwart has compelled the left-handed Golden Stallion scorer to polish his game and build up his lean frame for the constant banging he is bound to encounter in the college ranks.
“Right now, I’m going to start with my skills training, tapos gym para makapag-build-up ako,” the 6-foot Lao told Spin.ph. “Kasi iba na ‘yung game ng college.”
Lao said he he has yet to make up his mind on which school he'll go to in college, but admits academics and playing time will weigh heavily in his decision.
“Important ‘yung exposure sa akin at saka ‘yung academics,” he said.
Lao’s scoring prowess and his exposure with the national youth team have made him one of the top high school prospects in the country today.
He said his stint with the youth team gave him the much-needed experience and confidence boost.
“Sobrang nagbigay talaga sa akin ng confidence ‘yun dahil talagang cream of the crop ‘yun. Iba ang exposure internationally. Talagang nag-ready sa akin ‘yun in terms of skills and readiness sa ibang level,” Lao said.
That same confidence led him to win the season’s MVP plum, although he came up short in steering Xavier School to the MMTLBA title as the Golden Stallions lost to Hope Christian High School in their best-of-three championship series.
“Siyempre, parang proud rin ako sa ginawa ko, pero sayang rin na mas maganda na makuha ko rin ‘yung championship. Pero at least nakuha ko yung MVP. Honor din para sa akin ‘yun,” said Lao.
As he looks forward at playing a new phase in his young basketball career, Lao thanked the Xavier community for its all-out support during his entire stay with the school.
“Sobrang thankful ako sa 13 years na nasa Xavier ako. From Grade 4 to high school, pinu-push talaga nila ang mga athletes nila,” said Lao.