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Young Amos carves niche

Mason Amos has yet to play his first official game in the University Athletic Association of the Philippines, but his young brother — CJ — is already making heads turn with his impressive performance for the Gilas Pilipinas squad that will compete in the Southeast Asia Basketball Association U16 tournament.

Veteran mentor Louie Alas had seen the young Amos up close and personal during Gilas training, where his youngest son, Kieffer, is also participating.

“He is a shooter and plays the shooting guard spot,” said Alas, whose last stint was with Phoenix Super LPG in the Philippine Basketball Association.

Another former professional cager in Adonis Sta. Maria agreed with Alas’ observation, saying that CJ Amos’ skillset is very similar to his elder brother, who is set to debut for Ateneo de Manila University in the coming Season 86 of the UAAP.

“Mason is a big shooter while CJ is smaller. But just like his brother, he is also a shooter. CJ plays the big guard or small forward spot,” said Sta. Maria, who also has a son in the Gilas U16 pool.

Mason Amos made waves when he powered the Gilas Pilipinas U18 squad in the FIBA Asia Championship with glowing averages of 21.2 points and 5.8 rebounds per game.

His impressive performance served as his ticket to land a spot in the men’s team, making him the youngest member of the squad composed mostly of professional players from the PBA and Japan B. League.

His brightest moment came when he nailed 13 points on a flawless 3-of-3 shooting from the three-point area to help Gilas book a 107-96 win over Lebanon in the sixth window of the FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers at the Philippine Arena last February.

Then, the elder Amos joined the national squad in its quest for glory in the 32nd Southeast Asian Games.

Now it is his younger brother’s turn to prove his worth following a strong season for Queensland South in the Australian Junior Championship.

Aside from Amos, Alas and Sta. Maria, also part of the Gila U16 pool were Kurt Velasquez and Joaquin Ludovice of University of Santo Tomas, and Bryan Hachuela and Gian Gomez from La Salle Green Hills.

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