- May 30, 2023 16:29
By Aimerose C. Atienza
Far Eastern University (FEU) Tamaraws clinched their first win against the San Sebastian College - Recoletos (SSC-R) Golden Stags, 60-55, despite missing second half action of gunner Bryan Sajonia due to a muscle fatigue injury in the 2022 Filoil EcoOil Preseason Cup earlier today, July 27, at the Filoil EcoOil Centre in San Juan City.
After producing a 17-point lead at the end of the first half courtesy of Sajonia’s six points, the green-and-gold squad struggled to generate runs on both offensive and defensive ends that cut their lead down by six with five minutes left in the match, 51-45.
Sophomore Patrick Sleat stepped up and made 13 points, four boards, and three dimes to lead the team without the presence of Sajonia and team captain LJay Gonzales who was fouled out in the last frame.
“Kailangan talaga magstep up kasi nawala ‘yung one of our main guys tapos na-injury pa si Bryan, so kailangan talaga [na] kahit sino ipasok sa amin, magstep up… Kailangan lang namin gampanan ‘yung mga roles na ibibigay sa amin at magfocus kami sa depensa (We really need to step up because we lost one of our main guys and then Bryan got injured, so it's really necessary [for] all of us to step up... We just need to play the roles that are given to us and focus on defense),” Sleat said.
Interim head coach Eric Gonzales also mentioned that the Morayta dribblers just had to be reminded of the fundamentals of the sport to avoid losing momentum of the game.
“We just had to remind them [about] the fundamentals. Our team, especially the guards, likes to gamble, so the [fundamentals are] discipline, one-on-one defense, and control [of] the rebounds,” Coach Gonzales stated.
The Tamaraws will try to get back-to-back wins as they take on the San Beda University Red Lions on August 3 at the same venue.
(Photo by Alyssa Andrea Quiogue/FEU Advocate)