Racela crowns speedy Gonzales as FEU’s 'present and future'
MANILA, Philippines – The FEU Tamaraws got off to a losing start in the new UAAP Season 82, but it was a defeat they gladly took.
Up against the star-studded UP Fighting Maroons, the rebuilding Tamaraws made sure their foes earned their 61-55 win last Wednesday, September 4.
Not a single FEU player breached double-digit scoring in the close loss, but that was mainly due to a balanced attack and a healthy rotation.
Among the Tamaraws’ few bright spots that day was speedy sophomore L-Jay Gonzales, who finished with an all-around line of 8 points, 7 rebounds and 6 assists.
Despite shooting 3-of-14 from the field, this performance was enough to earn high praise from head coach and legendary point guard Olsen Racela.
“I don’t really look at the scoring,” he said after the game. “L-Jay is an all-around player, [he delivered a stat line of] 8, 7 and 6. That’s not even counting his pressure defense. Again, we’re investing on the youth.”
“L-Jay is our present and future,” he declared.
In response, the 20-year-old guard acknowledged the challenge to deliver.
“Pressure para sa akin pero nag-eenjoy lang ako,” Gonzales said. “Ine-enjoy ko lang kung ano yung mga sinasabi ng tao para sa akin.”
(It’s pressure for me but I’m just enjoying it. I’m just enjoying what people say about me.)
“Para sa akin sobrang saya kasi binigyan ako ng minuto ni coach Olsen,” he continued. “Hinding-hindi ko sasayangin yung minutong binigay niya.”
(I’m very happy that coach Olsen is giving me minutes. I really won’t waste the minutes he has given.)
At the same time, however, Gonzales also accepts that he has a long way to go.
“Siguro para sa akin ‘yung mga ‘di ko na-shoot, nagpraktis naman ako araw-araw pero siguro mintis lang yun,” he said of his shooting woes. “Kaya kailangan ko pang iimprove yung laro ko sa loob ng court pag naglalaro kami.”
(For the shots I didn’t make, I practice those every day so maybe they just missed today. This is why I need to improve my game on the court whenever we play.)
“Gusto kong i-share lahat kung anong meron ako,” he concluded. “Gusto kong ipakita sa kanila na kung anong meron ako para mapasaya ko yung team ko.”
(I just want to share everything I have. I want to show them what I have so I can make my teammates happy.) – Rappler.com