MANILA, Philippines – Kiefer Ravena claimed his second straight UAAP Most Valuable Player trophy Saturday, November 28 right before Game 2 of the UAAP Season 78 Finals at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
But in an unconventional move, Ravena, 22, did not raise his trophy alone.
The Ateneo Blue Eagles star thought it was best to share his award with friend and MVP runner-up Kevin Ferrer of the UST Growling Tigers.
"With Kevin, we're already one-all when it comes to the MVP," Ravena said chuckling in a mix of Filipino and English after accepting his award. "He beat me when I was in my fourth year in high school and I was able to go ahead of him now in our 5th year."
"But doing that is just more than the award, it's the companionship and friendship we shared all throughout being great competitors and just wanted to help our schools win. I shared it with him because he deserves it too," he added.
Ravena and Ferrer have long been rivals since their high school days but also became teammates during their time with the national team Sinag Pilipinas. Both players won the gold medal in the 2015 SEA Games.
Ravena barely edged his friend in the MVP race with 69.5 statistical points. Ferrer had 67.36.
Ravena, however, failed to make it to the finals in his last year after Ateneo got booted out by FEU in the Final Four.
Ferrer and UST look to extend the UAAP Finals to a winner-take-all game with a win over FEU in Game 2 Saturday.
"It's more than the statistics, it's how he represented his school very well this year," Ravena further praised Ferrer. "And I'm really proud of Kevin. Growing up watching his style of play, he really evolved into a leader."
Wishing my boi @Kevferrer goodluck! Enjoy it! pic.twitter.com/ToTX308PIQ — Kiefer Ravena (@kieferravena) November 28, 2015 – Rappler.com