By Maxine Louise Lagman
Two additional players, Mark Nonoy and Deo Cuajao leave University of Santo Tomas (UST), making them the latest players to leave the Growling Tigers after the team reportedly held a training camp in Sorsogon.
Nonoy, who was UAAP Season 82’s Rookie of the Year, confirmed his departure from UST in a farewell post on his Instagram account on Monday morning.
“Sa buong UST community na walang katulad sa pagcheer niyo po sa amin na nagbibigay lakas at inspirasyon sa akin sa bawat laro, hinding-hindi ko po kayo malilimutan,” Nonoy said. “Maraming salamat UST!”
The 5-foot-8 guard also mentioned his former coach Aldin Ayo, noting that he will forever be indebted to him. “I’m very thankful sa lahat ng coaching staff lalong-lalo na po kay coach Aldin Ayo na nagtiwalang kumuha sakin mula sa province to Manila at nagbigay sakin ng kumpiyansa pagdating sa cout at sa pag guide niya sa akin kahit off the court upang maging mabuting tao.”
On the other hand, Cuajao who tallied 13 points and 12 rebounds during his rookie season and showed promise during the 2020 PBA D-League, also posted a lengthy message to the UST community in his Instagram.
“Gusto ko pong magpasalamat sa buong UST community, sa buong coaching staff at managers, and most specially kay coach Aldin Ayo na nagsilbing aking pangalawang ama,” Cuajao said.
The two will serve residency next season and will be allowed to play in UAAP Season 84. They will have three more playing years in La Salle.
Nonoy and Cuajao’s decision follows the recent departure of former Growling Tigers teammates Rhenz Abando, Ira Bataller, Brent Paraiso, who transferred to Letran, Jun Asuncion to Mapua, and Cj Cansino to University of the Philippines after weeks of investigation amid “Sorsogon bubble” organized by now resigned coach Aldin Ayo.
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