Larry Ayuso’s Number 10 Retired by Arecibo Capitanes

Arecibo. The name and number Elías “Larry” Ayuso was forever captured in the history of the Captains of Arecibo.

And the Capitanes retired Ayuso’s number 10 on Saturday before the game against Atlético de San Germán. The iconic three-pointer became the eighth basket player whose number is immortalized by the franchise. Prior to Ayuso, the Arecibe management had retired the numbers of Víctor “Vitito” Cuevas (6), Jaime Frontera (11), William “Bill” McCadney (4), David Cortés (18), Rafael “Pachy” Cruz (13) , Moisés Navedo (18) and Manuel “Petaca” Iguina (5).

Larry Ayuso’s number 10 now hangs in the Manuel “Petaca” Iguina Coliseum, in Arecibo. (Nahira Montcourt)

“Here I lived special moments that I will never forget. This fan base has always supported basketball in Arecibo. It is a town of champions and I am super grateful for the love they gave me,” said Ayuso after seeing his number in the rafters of the Capitanes home.

“What a coincidence that there is also the San Germán team, which was a team that saw me grow. I always have affection for the San Germán fans, but it was here that Larry Ayuso became a man… They are super special in my life and, as I said in 2015, yellow and black runs through my veins,” he added.

Ayuso played five seasons with Arecibo (2005, 2006, 2010, 2011 and 2012). Those five campaigns were enough for him to win three National Superior Basketball (BSN) championships with the captain ship in 2005, 2010 and 2011. However, he captured another title in 2007 with the Cangrejeros de Santurce. In addition to that, he is the leader in triples in BSN history with 1,725.

Despite all the feats he achieved in his career of more than 20 years, he admitted that he never imagined one day seeing his number 10 perpetuated in the “Petaca” Iguina.

“The best years of my career were here… While playing with the Capitanes I never thought this would happen, but I have always received love every time I step on this field,” he commented.

Larry Ayuso smiles as he looks at the pennant of his number 10 at the Manuel “Petaca” Iguina Coliseum, in Arecibo. (Nahira Montcourt)

On the other hand, the former National Team player also confessed that, upon entering the coliseum that he once called home, he began to itch to direct again at the BSN. Ayuso debuted in 2020 as the Atlético’s strategist in the league that saw him grow. In fact, he was chosen two years later as Manager of the Year while he was pilot of the Quebradillas Pirates.

“Every time I enter this field it is a special feeling… God willing (I return to the BSN as a leader). I will always be available when the opportunity arises,” he stated.

After being named Manager of the Year, the Pirates decided not to repeat Ayuso and he was considered by the Captains themselves as coach of the Arecibean squad after the departure of “Pachy” Cruz.

2024-04-13 22:41:00
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