NCAA 95: Young Nelle growing under watchful eye of coach Boyet

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Aug 10, 2019 07:31 PM
Young Nelle growing under watchful eye of coach Boyet
Coach Boyet Fernandez sees nothing but a bright future for sophomore playmaker Evan Nelle (Photo by Josh Albelda)

Evan Nelle was having a standout showing in San Beda University's rivalry game opposite Colegio de San Juan de Letran, Saturday at Cuneta Astrodome.

That was until the last two minutes when he muffed on 3-of-4 shots from the free throw line while also committing a couple of turnovers as the Red Lions witnessed their archrival Squires threaten to as near as four.

"Sa totoo lang, I give credit to Letran's defense. Bakit? Binwisit nila si Evan e so nabwisit si Evan," head coach Boyet Fernandez said as they pulled off a 70-66 win. "I just told him, other teams will do that to you so you just have to focus on the game. We know that they will press Evan and he knows what he has to do."

Indeed, the Walls of Intramuros looked like they were caving in on the defending champions' sophomore playmaker in the endgame - and he had his mentor on his case all throughout.

Asked what he was telling Nelle then and there, coach Boyet answered, "Just stay calm. He's one of the best players of San Beda and if he gets pissed off, then we have a problem so he just has to play his game, he just has to be mature about it."

Wasting no time in showing maturity, the 21-year-old took responsibility of his shortcomings late in the game. As he put it, "I got frustrated, nawala ako sa momentum so I have to work on it. Sabi nga ni coach, he trusts me, especially in the endgame. I have to make those."

Of course, being under the wing of one of the best point guards in the history of the PBA is nothing but an honor for Nelle. "Nakakakilig," he expressed.

Still, that is also a big responsibility. "I have to repay his trust. Kailangan mag-mature ako for the team for the sake na makuha namin yung championship," he said.

The good news for the young talent is that he has the full faith of his mentor - from then until now. "First and foremost, I won't get him if he has no future. I saw the future with Evan and he's now one of the best point guards in college," coach Boyet said.

He then continued, "If he develops the way he develops right now, ang bilis e. Hopefully, he can sustain it."

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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