Kaye Pingol hopes to inspire other Filipina hoopers after Finals win in Red Bull Nationals

Rom Anzures, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 08 2023 02:35 PM

Uratex Dream triumphed in the Red Bull Half Court National Finals. Handout photo.
Uratex Dream triumphed in the Red Bull Half Court National Finals. Handout photo.

MANILA -- After Uratex Dream’s successful run in the Red Bull Half Court National Finals, Kaye Pingol is hoping that their win can also push other aspiring Filipina hoopers to reach for their basketball dreams. 

“Sobrang proud ako sa mga teammates ko na they really played their best nung tournamen, kaya I hope na we inspired a lot of people and more lalo na sa Women’s community,” she said. 

The 5-foot-6 standout knows that winning the tournament is a huge opportunity, as they will now be representing the country on the world stage. This is one reason that they went all out in their training for the event.

“Yung thought palang na pag nanalo kami this National Finals eh we have this opportunity na ma-represent yung country sa World Finals is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity na eh, kaya sa training we really pushed each other,” Pingol said.

And it resulted in a seamless entry to the team for their newest teammates in Mikka Cacho and Blance Bahuyan. 

“Knowing din na yung dalawa kong teammates na si Cacho and Bahuyan is bago lang sa team, pero ang bilis lang din naming mag-gel sa isat isa. Dagdag na rin yung will nila na makapasok sa sistema ng Dream.”

“Hindi rin madali kasi nga may dalawa kaming bago. Yung chemistry namin [before], ‘di ganon ka-solid. Kaya thankful kami sa mga nag-help samin sa trainings. Sa mga nakaka tuneup games namin, sa CCF boys and Swishfit tea, I think we couldn’t done it without their help,” she added. 

And as they head into Belgrade, Serbia, Pingol maintains her stance that even with the Finals win, they will use the coming months to gel and improve more as they face the world’s top 3x3 women’s teams. 

“We will play more games with other teams din kasi kailangan pa namin malaman yung laro at galaw ng isat isa. Yung chemistry namin, at we will polish pa siguro yung defense and offense lalo na yung in-game situational adjustments,” she said. 

“Sa World Finals, syempre it’s a higher level of competition. It's a good opportunity for us to represent not just the Uratex Dream team, but also the Philippines, and gagawin namin lahat ng makakaya namin. Papakita namin how beautiful basketball is in a way na makakapag inspire kami lalo na sa women's basketball community here in the Philippines.”