Yesterday, the San Beda Red Lions roared in what may have been their loudest and played as if there’s no tomorrow, beating the defending champion Letran Knights in a 57-49 hell of a thriller game, in the jampacked Rizal Memorial Coliseum, sharing the lead with the latter in the first round of this season’s NCAA.
In what seem to be a preview of the finals, the game confirmed the Red Lions’ strong campaign to regain the championship crown which was last won by San Beda in 1978! (Trivia: some players of San Beda of the 1979 NCAA Games gave a prep talk to the present cagers before the game and reminded them of the heartbreaking loss to Letran which could have given them a threepeat!) I was one of thousands of the Red Lions’ supporters cheering “umpa umpa umpa… beda beda beda fight fight fight…mey-u-kim kum kawa! I had to content myself with watching the game on TV because tickets have been sold out days before the scheduled game. Even then, watching it on TV was just as exciting as live, which brought back good memories of the NCAA Games. San Beda never won a championship during my time and everytime our team was losing, our cheers turned to “Pataasan nalang ng tuition fee!” No need for that now especially that the Red Lions are doing perfectly well under coach Koy Banal who also handed FEU Tamaraws one of their championship crowns against La Salle at the UAAP Games three seasons ago.
Could Samuel Ekwe, the 6-foot-8 exchange student from Nigeria who used to play soccer and the frontrunner in the MVP race be the “king lion” that San Beda have been waiting for 28 years?
Go San Beda Fight, 3X!!!
Postcript: Logo courtesy of http://www.redlionsden1.tripod.com