|Nonoy Chuatico got a chance to be mentored by no less than Sonny Jaworski during his three-season stint with Ginebra.|
MANILA--A sad news struck Philippine basketball right at the opening weekend of 2021 upon learning about the passing of former college basketball star Nonoy Chuatico.
Chuatico, who starred for Ateneo during the late 80's, died after a long battle against cancer at the age of 55 in Atlanta right on New Year's Day there.
The six-foot guard became well known for captaining the Blue Eagles to their first UAAP title in 1987, sinking the eventual go ahead free throw with 16 seconds left to preserve a comeback from 20 points down to beat a loaded UE Red Warriors lineup led by Jerry Codinera, Boycie Zamar, and Vilmer Banares at the Rizal Memorial Coliseum.
Chuatico stayed in the amateur ranks even after graduation and eventually led the Philippine team to the gold medal in the 1991 Southeast Asian Games at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City.
He finally declared for the PBA Draft the following year with Ginebra selecting him as the last pick in the first round--eighth overall.
Chuatico played for three seasons with the Barangay before being traded to the Purefoods franchise for fellow Ateneo alumnus Vince Hizon after the 1994 season.
Chuatico only played for the Hotshots during the 1995 season before taking an early PBA retirement.
Chuatico still got to return to pro basketball in 1998, joining the Manila Metrostars in the inaugural MBA season before finally retiring for good.
He would still join Louie Alas' coaching staff with Manila in the 1999 season, witnessing the team's dominant run to the championship highlighted by a 22-game winning streak, which remains as the longest in Philippine basketball to this day.
Chuatico was inducted to the Ateneo Sports Hall of Fame in 2007.
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