Wednesday, September 12, 2012

The Little Engine That Could

The first time I saw Emman Monfort playing for the Ateneo Blue Eagles was during his freshman year (2007-2008). I thought then that he wouldn't be getting a lot of playing time because of his height. He was assigned to Team B the following year and I maybe expected not to see him again.
Fate conspired to bring him again into action for Team A in UAAP Season 71 and he never looked back. Emman stands 5'6" but I soon realized that this was 5 feet 6 inches of pure sinew and muscle. This guy is strong, fast, fearless and plays every game like he has something to prove. He also has a quiet intelligence and wit that serves him well.
A steady all around player, he was a major cog in 3 of the 4 straight championships of the Eagles. A lot of people mention his ability to play the point and distribute the ball or make the crucial shot when he needed to but not many people saw his ablility to defend against the better guards of the league.

Here he goes up against Cris Tolomia of FEU...

Jeric Fortuna of UST...
LA Revilla of DLSU...

and of course his many match ups against RR Garcia of FEU.
He was a great team mate who encouraged everyone... 

and he knew how to give credit to others and not gloat after a win.

When I was young I remember reading a popular children's bedtime book with the title "The Little Engine That Could". It tells the story of a little locomotive that tried to prove himself and accepted a job that the bigger trains refused because of the perceived perils. So he pulled a bigger train over a mountain and succeeded where others feared to try. Now when I see Emman, I remember the Little Engine That Could.

Sometimes it's not all about height, it's all about heart.

Defensive specialist. Offensive threat. Heart of a Champion.

Added note:

Add polite to the list...I got a message from Emman after I messaged him about this piece. Such a credit to his family and the Ateneo.


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