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Korea-bound Belangel elated for Baldwin, Ateneo after winning championship in Japan

Luisa Morales - Philstar.com
Korea-bound Belangel elated for Baldwin, Ateneo after winning championship in Japan
The Ateneo Blue Eagles won the inaugural World University Basketball Series in Japan on Thursday
Facebook / Smart Sports

MANILA, Philippines — Even if he has left the nest of the Ateneo Blue Eagles, SJ Belangel remains connected to his roots before he leaves for Korea to make his professional hoops debut in the KBL.

Belangel on Thursday raved about his former team, which had just clinched the championship in the first-ever World University Basketball Series in Japan.

After missing out on the crown in UAAP Season 84, Belangel said he was beyond happy for his teammates for having tasted victory anew.

"I think for me right now, sobrang saya ko. Kanina actually, noong papunta ko pa lang dito, nanonood ako ng game nila, which is why it proves na the system is always there. Whether or not the players are out, good players are out, madaming bago, pero the system remains," Belangel told the media on Thursday during the JG4 Manila Tour at Ayala Malls Manila Bay.

"That means na 'yung binuild naming system ni Coach Tab is — whether or not you like it or not — andoon pa rin. Magcha-champion pa rin kahit anong mangyari, basta sumunod ka lang," he added.

With Ateneo, Belangel won two championships and a runner-up finish to the UP Fighting Maroons in what would be his last UAAP stint with the Katipunan-based squad.

Though having two years of eligibility left, Belangel opted to sign with Daegu KOGAS Pegasus. He is set to fly to Korea Friday.

Now on the outside looking in with the Blue Eagles, the 23-year-old swelled with pride.

"I'm just proud while watching kanina. Papauwi pa lang naman sila ngayon, so tatawagan ko sila mamaya. Masayang-masaya ako para sa kanila, especially for Coach Tab," he said.

Belangel played all his years in Ateneo under Baldwin and also suited up for Gilas Pilipinas while the tactician was still at the helm.

Belangel is set to be joined by the likes of RJ Abarrientos, Will Navarro, Ethan Alvano and Justin Gutang as Filipino imports in the league.

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