FEU set to regroup after embarrassing 39-point outing
MANILA, Philippines – FEU coach Olsen Racela did not even waste time trying to come up with an explanation after his Tamaraws tallied a humiliating 39-point total in their last game in the UAAP Season 82 men’s basketball tournament.
“Bottomline is my team didn't show up. That’s what it is,” said Racela after the Tamaraws got ripped by the NU Bulldogs, 39-61.
“If I give a reason, that’s an excuse. Bottomline is they did not show up and that's what's gonna happen if you do not show up in games this season.”
The Tamaraws’ cold streak got so bad that their 11 turnovers by intermission almost matched their forgettable 13-point first half.
“Whether you play NU or the strongest team, if you don’t show up, we will get blown up,” Racela continued.
“I always say that the teams are very balanced this season, so that’s what will happen. Every game, you have to bring your A-game. If you don't do that, that’s what will happen.”
Only big man Barkley Ebona fit the criteria of “showing up” that day as he led his team with 17 points, 12 rebounds and 3 blocks on a 7-of-11 shooting. However, the team veteran admitted he’d rather have nothing on the stat sheet if it meant getting the win.
“Sayang kasi binigay ko lahat pero mas pipiliin ko pa yung 0-0 ako sa game or 5-5 ako sa game basta manalo lang kami,” he said. “Lahat ng shooters namin, mga offensive players namin, walang nagawa eh. I’d rather choose na single digit lang ako as long as we get the win.”
(It’s unfortunate because I gave my all but I’d rather have a 0-0 or 5-5 game as long as we win. All our shooters didn't contribute. I’d rather finish in single digit as long as we get the win.)
Discounting Ebona’s performance, the rest of the team combined for a frigid 8-of-68 (11%) clip with top scorers Wendell Comboy, Pat Tchuente and Xyrus Torres firing 0-of-21.
The Tamaraws – tied at 5th with a similarly struggling La Salle at 2-4 – hope to rediscover their sharp form when they play the Adamson Falcons on Saturday, September 28, at the Mall of Asia Arena.
“Pag-aaralan namin kung saan kami nagkamali. Saan kami may lapses,” Ebona continued. “Try namin mag-bounce back ulit. Two straight na kaming talo kaya di na kami pwedeng matalo pa sa pangatlo kung gusto naming makapasok sa Final Four. Crucial tong last game sa first round. Dapat ipanalo namin 'to. Dapat magtulungan kami.”
(We’ll study where we went wrong, where we had lapses. We’ll try to bounce back. We’ve lost two straight so we can’t lose the third one if we want to get to the Final Four. This last game in the first round is crucial. We have to win. We have to help one another.) – Rappler.com