Wala kaming pinagsisisihan -- CJ Perez
Masaya kami kasi at least, binigay namin ‘yung best namin, wala kaming pinagsisisihan. Kahit natalo kami, at least, ‘yung buo namin, binigay namin -- CJ Perez
Still a good season.
Despite ending their dream season with a dud, 93rd NCAA seniors basketball Most Valuable Player CJ Perez still left the Big Dome Thursday with his head held up high moments after Lyceum of the Philippines University surrendered to back-to-back champions San Beda Red Lions.
The Pirates owned the elimination round, winning all of their 18 matches and wrote history by making it to the Finals for the first time since joining the league in 2011.
But the best-of-three championship round belonged to the Red Lions as they swept the Perez and LPU, sealing the deal with 92-82 win in Game 2.
“It’s a good experience pa rin para sa amin,” said Perez, who tried to carry the Pirates with 22 points.
“‘Di kami mag-excuse na first time namin, pero at least, binigay namin ‘yung best namin sa game na to,” added the Pangasinan native, who fouled out with 36 seconds left in the match and the game already slipping away from LPU.
Just like in their series opener, LPU came out with all guns blazing and even built an 11-point gap in the third.
But the experienced Red Lions caught up, with Robert Bolick, who killed the Pirates in the closing stretch of Game 1, again burying the dagger from the outside in the last two minutes as the Pirates’ dream season crumbled.
In just two games, LPU’s 18-game winning streak was overshadowed by a more dramatic championship run by SBC, which came in the Finals as underdogs for the first time since 2006.
“Pero para sa amin, magandang season pa rin ‘to para sa amin,” said Perez, who averaged 23.5 points, five rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.5 steals in the Finals.
“Masaya kami kasi at least, binigay namin ‘yung best namin, wala kaming pinagsisisihan. Kahit natalo kami, at least, ‘yung buo namin, binigay namin,” he added. “’Yun nga, nabitin, pero magandang experience para sa amin.”
For now, all Perez and LPU could only do is lick their wounds.
But the journey is just beginning for the boys from Intramuros.
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