AFTER getting little lift from a veteran crew, University of the Philippines is hoping to get a boost from a bunch of rookies next season in the UAAP cage wars.
UP head coach Ricky Dandan said they are actively pursuing a few top prospects out of high school after eight players from last year's team, including scorer Mike Silungan, played out their UAAP eligibility last season.
The Maroons are looking to win a few more recruits after successfully luring Philippine Youth team standout Kyle Suarez, who played for the Ateneo Blue Eaglets in high school.
Also in UP’s pool are Jason Ligad from St. Jude, transferee Agu Amar from West Negros University, Fil-American Andrew Harris, and Kim Cinco from UPIS.
“We are still going after three more recruits,” said Dandan, without mentioning names.
One player the Maroons are reportedly eyeing is Dawn Ochea, a top prospect from Sacred Heart-Ateneo de Cebu who emerged as the juniors MVP of the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi).
Five-time defending champion Ateneo has also expressed interest in Ochea in hopes of filling the gap left by Greg Slaughter and Nico Salva.
“We lost eight players from last season so we are on a major rebuilding. We will most likely be the youngest team in the UAAP next season,” said Dandan, whose team is coming off a 1-13 (win-loss) season.