'No sure shot,’ says Pumaren as Falcons target semis bonus
MANILA, Philippines – For the third straight season under Franz Pumaren, the once pushover Adamson Soaring Falcons are back in the UAAP Final Four.
And now, they’re hungry for more than just a playoff appearance.
So it's no surprise that the Falcons aren't taking their remaining games lightly as they try to stay in the top two, which comes with a twice-to-beat semifinal advantage.
“There’s still no sure shot, but if you’re gonna say it based on the team standings, it’s supposed to be. But we won’t be complacent, that’s what's important,” said Pumaren as the Falcons close out their elimination campaign against University of the East on Saturday, November 10, and Far Eastern University on November 18.
The Falcons hold the solo 2nd spot at 9-3, just behind the 10-2 record of defending champion Ateneo. But a surging La Salle squad, running a close 3rd at 8-4, still remains in the running for the Final Four bonus.
“We’re almost there to get that particular incentive and we’re aiming for that," said Pumaren. "I’d be a hypocrite if I tell you that we’re already happy entering the Final Four. We want to get that particular incentive.”
In the last two seasons, Adamson got booted out by La Salle in heated Final Four matchups.
That's why more than any team, the Falcons would know the value of the coveted twice-to-beat advantage that could help them finally get over the hump.
So even for the Adamson players like team captain Sean Manganti, the target remains clear.
“It feels good [to be in the Final Four], but we’ve done it already twice,” said Manganti. “That’s not our goal. We’ve got a higher goal.” – Rappler.com