WHEN former coach Ato Agustin steered San Sebastian College to a stunning victory over San Beda College in last year's NCAA championship, many could not believe that the former PBA Most Valuable Player (MVP) winner has what it takes to become one fine bench strategist.
Since retiring from the PBA, little has been heard from this humble “Capampangan” who rose to national prominence when he won the coveted MVP plum in 1992 while playing for the mighty San Miguel Beer squad.
But all the doubts regarding Agustin's capability vanished into thin air on the night the world celebrated Earth Day when he piloted Excelroof to a masterful win over Pharex B-Complex in the 2010 PBL PG Flex Erase Placenta Cup at The Arena in San Juan.
And what a way it was to win his first PBL title.
Their 97-92 victory last Saturday enabled Excelroof to complete its Cinderella tale, becoming the first team since 1995 to win the PBL championship on its rookie year.
Their victory was doubly sweet as they completed a two-game sweep of Pharex B-Complex in their best-of-three championship. They took Game 1 in overtime, 97-87.
"That's make this victory doubly meaningful for us," Agustin said.
Excelroof's PBL victory is also a testament that Agustin's NCAA championship is no fluke.
"This is indeed a big break for me and I have to thank the owners of Excelroof, led by Edwin C. Chua, team manager Oliver Gianan and the rest of our supporters, including my province-mates who came here to provide morale support to the team," Agustin said.