Perpetual's Earl Thompson (R) goes to the basket against San Sebastian's Justine Mercado. Photo by Mark Cristino for ABS-CBNnews.com
MANILA, Philippines – Reigning NCAA Most Valuable Player Earl Scottie Thompson earned ACCEL Quantm/3XVI NCAA Press Corps Player of the Week honors after putting up huge numbers in the Season 91 men's basketball tournament last week.
Thompson submitted sensational performances against Mapua Institute of Technology and San Sebastian College, even notching a triple-double against the Golden Stags.
He finished with 21 points, 15 rebounds, and 14 assists against San Sebastian for his second triple-double of the season and fifth in his career. Against the Cardinals, he was just a point short of a triple-double with nine points, 12 rebounds, and 10 assists.
In total, Thompson is averaging 14 points, 12.2 boards, and 9.5 assists per game while also leading the University of Perpetual Help Altas to a 4-0 record so far in the tournament.
Despite his gaudy numbers, Thompson remains humble and says he is inspired by his teammates.
"Alam ko naman kung gaano sila magpakahirap sa practice, kaya talagang hinahanap ko sila," said Thompson. "Kung sino 'yung bakante talaga, lagi kong sinasabi sa kanila na ready to shoot lang sila."
Perpetual Help head coach Aric del Rosario is relieved to see that his top player's feet remain firmly on the ground despite all that he has achieved in the sport – including being a member of the gold medal winning team in the 28th Southeast Asian Games.
"Sa status ni Scott, pwede na siya magbuwaya eh," he pointed out. "Pero mahal niya ang mga kasama niya, kaya talagang pag may opportunity na ibigay sa mga kakampi niya, pinapasa niya."
"Talagang kahit anong narating niya, team player pa rin siya," Del Rosario added. "'Yun talaga ang kagandahan sa kanya."
Thompson becomes the second player from Perpetual Help to win the Player of the Week award, following Nigerian center Bright Akhuetie.
Thompson edged out fellow Gilas Cadet member Jiovani Jalalon of the Arellano University Chiefs for the weekly award.