San Beda University is in a must-win situation heading into Game 2 of the Finals in the NCAA 95 Men's Basketball Tournament.
This, after completing a clean sweep of the elimination round and automatically advancing into the championship round.
That, though, is actually a good thing - if one chooses to look at it glass half-full.
That is what head coach Boyet Fernandez has decided to do. "The pressure is off our backs right now. Having a (perfect record) takes its toll on the players and the community," he said.
Several streaks of the Red Lions came to a close when they dropped Game 1 of the best-of-three Finals to archrival Colegio de San Juan de Letran last Tuesday.
San Beda had been on a 32-game win run - until that loss to Letran.
San Beda has been undefeated this season - until that loss to Letran.
San Beda has had its archrivals' number for four years - until that loss to Letran.
And so, the Knights have turned the tides.
That means it's about time for Mendiola's young guns to prove themselves worthy of the legacy of the likes of Sam Ekwe, Borgie Hermida, and Robert Bolick. "It will be tough because we only lost once this season. We don't know how we will come back, but I told them that the test of our character is how we will come back from a loss," Coach Boyet said.
He then continued, "This is a big test for the maturity of our boys. If they step up, then I will say that they made it to where we want them to be."
Only time will tell if ready reserve turned Season MVP Calvin Oftana and second-year studs James Canlas and Evan Nelle will answer their mentor's call.
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