Gilas Pilipinas and Alaska Aces star Calvin Abueva receives Spin.ph Sportsman of the Year award
The brightest sports stars of 2015 led by Calvin Abueva share centerstage. Jaime Campos

CALVIN Abueva was awarded the Sportsman of the Year award and the other big stars who made their mark on and off the competition arena were feted by Spin.ph on Saturday at the Ceremonial Hall of Marriott Hotel Manila.

Abueva is the third recipient of the Sportsman of the Year award, joining former Gilas Pilipinas coach Chot Reyes and national team skipper Jimmy Alapag in the elite list.

“Nagpapasalamat ako at ako ang napili ng Spin, salamat sa mga coaches ko at sa lahat ng sumusuporta (sa akin),” said Abueva, who was joined on stage by Alaska coach Alex Compton, deputy mentor Louie Alas, and team governor and manager Dickie Bachmann.

The face of the renaissance of volleyball in the country, Ateneo spiker Alyssa Valdez was given the award for Sportsmen Who Change the Game, while Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) president Manny V. Pangilinan won the award for the category Sportsmen Who Make It Happen for his role not only as the country's top basketball supporter but of other sports as well.

Gilas coach Tab Baldwin was given the Sportsmen Who Take The Lead award after steering the national squad to a second straight runner up finish in the FIBA Asia Men's Championship, while rising star Kobe Paras was given the award in the category Sportsmen Who Inspire Hope.

Asean Para games gold medalist Ernie Gawilan was given the award for the category Sportsmen Who Defy the Odds, while NCAA champions Letran Knights were picked the team of the year and handed the award for Sportsmen Who Succeed As One.

The UP Maroons were given the award for the category Sportsmen Who Care for their work with children of the Lumads, while Donnie Nietes, who has maintained his spot as boxing world champion for eight straight years, was given the award Sportsmen Who Embody The Filipino Fighting Spirit.

UP honor student-player JR Gallarza is Spin.ph’s awardee for Sportsmen Who Excel In Academics.

Follow the writer on Twitter: @spinph