UAAP Season 76: Adamson ready to soar with Cruz
Projected First 5
G Ryan Monteclaro
G Jericho Cruz
F Jansen Rios
F Rodney Brondial
C Ingrid Sewa
Key additions: Ingrid Sewa, Axel Inigo
Key subtractions: Alex Nuyles, Eric Camson
Looking back: Adamson University’s UAAP Season 75 campaign screeched to a halt after losing wing man Alex Nuyles to a shoulder injury a few games into the first round. With Nuyles out of the picture, it was big man Eric Camson who stepped up to the plate and almost single-handedly salvaged a 6th place finish for the Falcons.
Backcourt: All eyes shall be on spitfire Jericho Cruz, who will stand at the forefront of the Falcons' offense. Coach Leo Austria will heavily rely on Cruz’s exploits as he is a do-it-all type wing man who can score from virtually anywhere and has the swagger to take over games.
Point guard Ryan Monteclaro will be the key facilitator, but two seasons in, questions still abound whether he could be a Lester Alvarez or Jerick Canada-type of playmaker for Adamson. Axel Inigo will be coming off the bench not just to give Monteclaro some rest but also to dictate while on the floor.
Frontcourt: Ingrid Sewa hopes he could assert his might and fill the void left by Camson and even Austin Manyara in the past seasons. With his arrival, Brondial will slide to the 4, a position he is much accustomed to. Brondial is tasked to crash the boards and get easy baskets inside. Taking care of the wings are Jansen Rios, Harry Petilos and streak-shooter Roider Cabrera, who would have to be more consistent this time to make an impact.
Coaching: Trying to revive Adamson’s winning ways, newly-minted ABL Coach of the Year Austria will be calling the shots anew for the Falcons. He is a respected tactician who definitely knows his Xs and Os and has championship pedigree after leading the San Miguel Beermen to the ABL trophy this year.
X-Factor: A player noted for his sweet stroke from long range, Cabrera has been maddeningly inconsistent throughout his collegiate career. Now is his last chance to prove his worth, especially as the Falcons do not really have that spark plug who can catalyze runs when their starters are on the bench.
Looking forward: Losing two players who were focal points of their attack last year would be felt in San Marcelino. But if Cruz will have an MVP-type season as many have projected and Sewa and Brondial do their job in the paint, Adamson would be in the mix for Final Four contention.
The biggest question, though, remains their suspect bench and it will be up to Austria to utilize his reserves well as they aim to return to glory as season hosts. - Rappler.com