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Enrique "Coco" Vicéns

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Enrique "Coco" Vicéns
Personal information
Born(1926-09-03)3 September 1926
Ciales, Puerto Rico
Died6 March 2015(2015-03-06) (aged 88)
Ponce, Puerto Rico
NationalityPuerto Rican
Career information
CollegeUniversity of Puerto Rico
Playing career1946–1962
PositionPoint guard
Career history
Leones de Ponce
Enrique A. ("Coco") Vicéns
Member of the Puerto Rico Senate
from the At-large district
In office
Personal details
Born3 September 1926
Ciales, Puerto Rico
Died6 March 2015
Ponce, Puerto Rico
Alma materUniversity of Puerto Rico
Military service
AllegianceUnited States United States of America
Emblem of the United States Department of the Army.svg
United States Army
US-O3 insignia.svg

Enrique "Coco" Alberto Vicéns Sastre (3 September 1926 – 6 March 2015) was a Puerto Rican professional basketball player that also served as senator-at-large in the Puerto Rico State Legislature from 1973 until 1978.[3] He played for the Leones de Ponce basketball team[4] and was also a volleyball player and track and field athlete. His brother was basketball star Juan "Pachín" Vicéns.

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Early years

Enrique "Coco" Alberto Vicéns Sastre was born September 3, 1926, in Ciales, Puerto Rico.[5] He was one of 13 siblings.[6] He attended high school at Escuela Superior José de Diego in Manati from 1939 to 1943, graduating that year. Starting in 1943 he attended the University of Puerto Rico.[5] He graduated as a medical doctor with a specialty in otorhinolaryngology (ENT).[7]

Sports career

From 1943 through 1946, Vicéns played in the Baloncesto Superior Nacional league, winning the national championship in the 1944-45 season. In 1944, and again in 1946, he formed part of Puerto Rico's National Basketball Team competing in Cuba. In 1945, he formed part of the first Puerto Rican college basketball team to play in the United States at Madison Square Garden, Buffalo Memorial Auditorium and Philadelphia Palestra, playing against Valparaiso University, Bowling Green State University and Loyola University.[8] In 1946, Vicéns was also champion in the 800 meter intercollegiate games. He also competed in the 400m and the 4 × 400 m races. He competed in track and field, basketball, and volleyball.[8]

In 1946, Vicéns moved to Ponce where he would have his final home base and residence. By then he had been nicknamed "El Hombre de Goma’’ (the man of rubber) for his performance on the basketball court.[8] In that same year he became a basketball player for the Leones de Ponce, playing until 1951, and again in 1953.

Vicéns Sastre entered the U.S. Army and by 1952 he was an Army captain at the barracks in Fort Buchanan in the 296th Regiment. He received a Bronze Star Medal for his actions in the Korean War.[9] As a physician, he was part of the medical staff that accompanied the Puerto Rico Delegation to the 1970 Central American and Caribbean Games.[10]

In 1957, he returned to the Leones de Ponce basketball team for the 1957-58 season. From 1959 to 1962 he owned the Ponce Leones team, seeing them into two national victories during in the 1960 and 1961 seasons. During 1960, Vicéns was also responsible for the establishment of the first volleyball franchise in Ponce.[8] From 1964 to 1968 he again owned the Leones de Ponce team, seeing them once again into three national victories in 1964, 1965, and 1966. In 1967, the Leones fought for the winner's crown but was ultimately defeated while vying for the top position.[11]

Political career

In 1972, Vicéns Sastre ran for electoral office winning a seat in the Puerto Rico State Legislature as senator-at-large from 1973 until 1978.[3] There he served as president of the Senate’s Comision de Juventud y Deportes (Commission on the Youth and Sports) from 1972 to 1976.[8] Projects developed or completed under Vicens Sastre's watch included Guayama’s indoor basketball court, Manati’s Baseball stadium, and basketball courts in Canovanas and Fajardo.[8] Vicéns served as a Municipal Legislator in Ponce during 2004-2008.[12]

"Coco" Vicens was a member of the Popular Democratic Party of Puerto Rico,[13] which opposes Puerto Rican statehood and favors a commonwealth status relationship with the United States.

Last years and death

Vicéns Sastre died on March 6, 2015. He was 88 years old.[6]


In 1966 he was selected to the Puerto Rico Basketball Hall of Fame and in 1993 he was included in the Ciales Sports Hall of Fame.[9] His entry into the Ponce Sports Hall of Fame took place in 1983.[8] In the 1990s the "Centro Recreativo y Cultural Enrique Vicéns" was established at the Complejo Recreativo y Cultural La Guancha by the Ponce municipal government under the administration of Ponce Mayor Rafael Cordero Santiago.[14][15] He was a member of Phi Sigma Alpha fraternity.[16]

See also


  1. ^ Dr. Enrique A. "Coco" Vicéns. La Perla del Sur. 11 March 2015. p. 39. Retrieved 11 March 2015.
  2. ^ Duelo por la muerte de "Coco" Vicéns. Junior Lugo Marrero. La Perla del Sur. Ponce, Puerto Rico. Page 45. Year 33. Issue 1632. 11 March 2015. Retrieved 11 March 2015.
  3. ^ a b "Ciales". Encyclopedia of Puerto Rico. Retrieved 10 July 2010.
  4. ^ "Historia" (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 13 July 2011. Retrieved 17 August 2010.
  5. ^ a b Duelo por la muerte de “Coco” Vicéns. Junior Lugo Marrero. La Perla del Sur. Ponce, Puerto Rico. Page 45. Year 33. Issue 1632. 11 March 2015. Retrieved 11 March 2015.
  6. ^ a b Muere leyenda del baloncesto: Coco Vicens, uno de los hermanos del también legendario Pachín Vicens, falleció hoy a los 88 años. El Nuevo Dia. Guaynabo, Puerto Rico. 6 March 2015.
  7. ^ Fallece Enrique “Coco” Vicens. Raúl Álzaga. Primera Hora. 7 March 2015. Accessed 6 June 2016.
  8. ^ a b c d e f g ‘’Duelo por la muerte de "Coco" Vicéns .’’ Junior Lugo Marrero. La Perla del Sur. Ponce, Puerto Rico. Page 45. Year 33. Issue 1632. 11 March 2015. Retrieved 11 March 2015.
  9. ^ a b Martínez Rosario, Leonardo, ALREDEDOR DE TRES RECUERDOS
  10. ^ Uriarte, Carlos. "1970: Puerto Rico en los Juegos" (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 8 July 2011. Retrieved 17 August 2010.
  11. ^ ‘’Duelo por la muerte de "Coco" Vicéns.’’ Junior Lugo Marrero. La Perla del Sur. Ponce, Puerto Rico. Year 33. Issue 1632. 11 March 2015. Page 45. Retrieved 11 March 2015.
  12. ^ "Ordenanza Numero 21" (PDF). Legislatura Municipal de Ponce. Archived from the original (PDF) on 17 July 2011.
  13. ^ "Fallece Enrique "Coco" Vicens". Primera Hora. 7 March 2015.
  14. ^ "Resolucion Numero 189" (PDF) (in Spanish). Archived from the original (PDF) on 26 July 2011. Retrieved 17 August 2010.
  15. ^ Díaz, Arlyn. "Meca sureña del sabor y esparcimiento". La Perla del Sur (in Spanish). Ponce, Puerto Rico. Retrieved 17 August 2010.
  16. ^ Hernández, Rosario (20 July 1993), R. de la C. 1310 (PDF) (in Spanish), House of Representatives of Puerto Rico, p. 2, archived from the original (PDF) on 27 September 2011, retrieved 1 September 2010
This page was last edited on 19 September 2019, at 22:22
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