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Friday, May 31, 2024

Coach Joe Lipa Special: CJL and ward Alfrancis Chua

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(9TH OF 10 parts)

During his UST Glowing Goldie days in the mid-80s, before being rebranded as the Growling Tigers, Coach Alfrancis Chua was already a tactician in training.

While playing for Coach Joe Lipa with the PABL Maharlika Cup champions, Philips Sardines, as a defensive combo guard in Lipa’s regular rotation. Beginning to be known for not conforming with the non-conformist, by going against the offensive and defensive concepts of the game changer from Diliman, being implemented as their system, of course, all in a healthy exchange of ideas.

Little did the pony-tailed coach know, he was being prepared to concurrent coaching jobs with a pair of his alma mater he attended, Grace Christian HS, and UST High while playing college and amateur ‘ball!

His day would start with morning practices with Philips, then he’d drive to UST for his classes, afternoons up to early evenings are spent with back-to-back sessions with the Tomasino Real squad and shuttling to Grace Christian, daily.

Just keying in that last sentence to describe Coach Al’s schedule from back in the day, got me exhausted mentally!

He shared with BB IQ, about the work ethic and values he developed under Coach Joe, which to this day he remembers and applies. Considered in basketball circles as the luckiest man in the country, he shot back, it’s all about the hard work, never asking what he’ll get in return, like his long-time mentor.

The SMC Board Governor to the PBA came up with a quote in the vernacular shared with him by Coach Joe, which in a nutshell describes his playing/coaching journey and up to where he is situated right now, it reads.

“Ang mga masusuerte, ay kapatid ng mga magagaling…! In English, that’s what I’m talkin’ about! Then I realized, kaya pala tinamaan ng magaling si Coach Al.

(Sonny “Peter” Regalado Lopez, is currently a player development coach, marketing communications consultant, and book author. He collaborated with coach Joe Lipa in publishing Basketball 101, a book that aims to coach the coaches and provide reference material for Physical Education teachers in the K to 12 curricula. The 53-year-old Lopez is a San Beda College, Manila, BSC Marketing Management graduate, who currently is working on publishing the memoirs of great coaches Joe Lipa, SJLC’s Larry Albano, and San Beda’s, late Edmundo ‘Ato’ Badolato, all in coffee table book format.)

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