MANILA – One of the greatest Filipino basketball players of all time, Carlos “Caloy” Loyzaga, passed away on Wednesday morning, January 27, at Cardinal Santos Medical Center at the age of 85.
Caloy Loyzaga had his health failure after a massive stroke struck him in 2011, which made him settled in the Philippines in 2013 and it became the cause of his death.
During his playing years, the dominance of the Philippine team in Asian basketball and bagging the 7th place in the 1956 Melbourne Olympics has made him called as ‘The Big Difference.’
The 6-feet-4 Loyzaga was the dominant center during his time, making the Philippines led to a third place in the 1954 World Basketball Championship where he became part of the tournament’s All-Star team.
The Philippine team was the first and only time that an Asian country garnered a medal in a prestigious event.
Carlos Loyzaga was also a recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award given by the Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA) in 2013.
He also played for San Beda Red Lions which was his stepping stone in his basketball career in MICAA and became part of YCO Painters.
At the time of Loyzaga’s playing, the Philippines won four titles in Asian Basketball Games, but lost it in 1966. In the Asian Basketball Confederation, now known as FIBA Asia, the Philippines won in 1960 and 1963 and played with an injury against Taiwan.
Loyzaga reached the milestone of his basketball career and coached the national team. He was nicknamed as The Dirty Dozen, the team regained its ABC title in 1967.
He also became a councilor in Manila, and was a coach in PBA for Tanduay.