|Jun-Jun Bonsubre tries to block Vergel Zulueta's layup.|
MANILA--Following a commotion between then San Beda men's basketball coach Frankie Lim and San Sebastian women's volleyball coach Roger Gorayeb before Christmas of 2011, the NCAA ordered a suspension on Lim and majority of the Red Lions for its 2012 season opener against the Arellano Chiefs.
That left only six players, namely Yvan Ludovice, Arth Dela Cruz, Ritchie Villaruz, Francis Abarcar, Dave Moralde, and Jun-Jun Bonsubre for Coach Ronnie Magsanoc, who would replace Lim as San Beda coach during the preseason, to utilize for the showdown against the full strength Arellano squad.
Despite being the defending champions then, the Red Lions were too much of a pre-game underdog that One Sports, then known as Sports 5, actually opted not to put their game against the Chiefs on national television.
"Kahit yung ibang team, sinasabi na wag nang i-live yung laro kasi nga anim lang kami," Bonsubre recalled the said match in the Sports on Air podcast on Wednesday night.
However, according to the six-foot-five bruiser, they just disregarded the odds.
"In-enjoy lang namin yung game namin. Binigay namin lahat. Andoon naman yung coaches namin para i-guide kami," Bonsubre further said.
And then, the unthinkable happened.
With no legitimate main man and the team having to play without a substitute the rest of the way due to Bonsubre fouling out, San Beda shocked Arellano, 81-71, on that fateful day of June 23, 2012 at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan City.
As fate would have it, the Red Lions would go on to win it all for the third straight time, beating archrivals Letran Knights in the finals.
But the road to the three-peat was made sweeter by the gallant effort of the so-called "Super 6".
"Proud ang buong San Beda community sa amin," Bonsubre further said. "Historic yun."
Dela Cruz eventually made it big time, becoming one of the Red Lions' main players, a PBA first round pick, a Gilas Pilipinas Men pool member, and now a two-time pro basketball champion with Ginebra.
Bonsubre looks to follow in Dela Cruz's footsteps as he declared for this year's PBA Draft.
Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno