AFTER four decades, Jong Uichico and Junel Baculi, former teammates with La Salle high school men’s basketball team, found themselves reunited.
Baculi will help out Uichico, the recently appointed head coach, on the bench. Together, their veteran presence and deep knowledge of the game will be a big boost for the Risers.
The appointment of Baculi was confirmed to FOX Sports Philippines by team manager Borgie Hermida.
“Junel Baculi joins Risers head coach Jong Uichico as first assistant,” wrote Hermida in an online message.
Baculi has been away from coaching for the past few years. He last coached in the PBA in 2013 for the GlobalPort Batang Pier, then assumed the post as athletic director of National University.
But Baculi is a proven winner, claiming championships when he was still coach of the Lamoiyan-owned franchise Dazz and Hapee Toothpaste and the Welcoat Paintmasters.
As a player, he was part of the troika composed of Leo Isaac and Bong Ramos, now head coach of the Pampanga Dong Lanterns, as they powered the Mapua Cardinals to the NCAA title in 1981.
Also included in the team is Woody Co, who previously worked as an assistant coach of Mac Tan in Batangas City. He is now the squad’s new team manager.
Photo from Bataan Risers Facebook