Letran will be without starter Jerrick Balanza for the rest of Season 94 of the NCAA after he was diagnosed with a tumor in his temporal lobe of the brain.
Fr. Vic Calvo, OP, Letran’s representative to the NCAA Management Committee, bared the bad news yesterday after the diagnosis from neuro-surgeon Dr. Manuel Mariano came out, asking Balanza to undergo an operation to remove the said tumor.
And if the operation is successful, Balanza should be back by November the fastest.
The 21-year-old Balanza, who has normed 7.4 points, 2.6 rebounds and 2.2 assists in the first round, however, will miss the rest of the season and will be replaced by reserve Gaylord Pambid if approved by the Mancom chair Frank Gusi of host Perpetual Help.
“Yes, we need him (Balanza), but his health is our primary concern,” said Calvo.
Balanza, however, will need money as the operation will cost him a minimum of P500,000.
“Initially, P800,000 was the cost given to us but since the neuro-surgeon, Dr. Manuel Mariano, is from Letran and was recently awarded as an outstanding alumnus, it was cut to P500,000. Peter Cayco is helping because he knows people from the hospital,” said Calvo.