Coach Frankie says Perpetual overachieved in NCAA 94

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Oct 31, 2018 02:55 PM
Coach Frankie says Perpetual overachieved in NCAA 94
Prince Eze and Perpetual surprised just about everybody by being in the Final Four of the NCAA 94

Upstart University of Perpetual Help bowed to defending champion San Beda University in their Final Four match-up in the NCAA 94 Men’s Basketball Tournament.

That means that the Altas’ title hopes in MVP frontrunner Prince Eze’s last year in wine and gold have been dashed.

Still, head coach Frankie Lim was the first to say that not many expected them to be even here at all. “Obviously, my players, the whole team overachieved this season,” he told reporters after they lost to the Red Lions last Friday.

He then continued, “We have 11 new players. Kung kasama namin kayo nung January at nakita ninyo yung team, sabi ko noon, swerte na ito makatatlong panalo. Talagang walang materyales e.”

Coach Frankie, who won five championships as shot-caller for San Beda University, was tasked in January to uplift a once rising program that had just gone 3-15.

Even then, he acknowledged that was easier said than done as, aside from Eze and AJ Coronel, the cupboard in terms of talent was bare.

Still, the multi-titled mentor went to work with his new team. “We explained the system, what we want to do, what we want to happen, and nakisama naman sila. After a while, nakita naming unti-unti nang naggo-grow yung team when we played in the D-League,” he shared, referring to their PBA D-League campaign where they went 3-8.

He then continued, “After that, sabi ko, baka may chance kasi kahit paano, we can pull off some wins.”

Perps did just that – and more – as the emergence of Edgar Charcos and Jielo Razon granted them the perimeter firepower to complement Eze’s interior dominance.

Sprinkle in the versatility of Coronel and Kim Aurin as well as a stout defense, and they marched to an 11-7 campaign – kicking pre-season favorites such as College of St. Benilde and San Sebastian College-Recoletos out of the playoff picture in the process.

While they fell short of getting even one from the twice-to-beat Red Lions, Coach Frankie still called their season a success. “It’s an achievement, yes, but we could have gone and become better. We’re like two wins away from the Finals, pero malakas talaga yung San Beda eh,” he said.

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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