Youth on the march for still hopeful Adamson

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Aug 30, 2015 07:47 PM
Youth on the march for still hopeful Adamson
LEARNING TO FLY. A solid haul of recruits fronted by Juniors mythical selection Jaydee Tungcab will be at the forefront of the Adamson attack.

Following a one-win season, expectations are far from sky high for Adamson University in the 78th Season of the UAAP Men's Basketball Tournament.

Even more so after the Soaring Falcons let go of legendary alumnus Kenneth Duremdes in the offseason and promising forward Matthew Aquino followed him out the door.

The good news for the Ermita-based school is that Duremdes deputy Mike Fermin is set to continue what was already started. Going with him in their trek back towards contention is a solid haul of recruits fronted by former Juniors Mythical selection Jaydee Tungcab.

“Siya yung makikita mong exceptional ang skill level. Bata pa, pero malaki ang puso. Iba siya,” Fermin told ABS-CBN Sports.

Tungcab is only the tip of the iceberg of a promising future for Adamson that also includes Nico Capote and Gerald Fernandez. “Andami naming mga rookie ulit, pero ang maganda, lumalaban yung mga bata,” the Adamson coach said.

While the Falcons have riches in terms of promise, they lack valuable veteran leadership with only team captain Dawn Ochea having already logged more than two seasons. However, that only means that the challenge is there for guys like sophomores Joseph Nalos and Ivan Villanueva to quickly mature.

In particular, Villanueva was off to a great start in his rookie season last year before tailing off. As the Falcons’ mentor put it, “Lalo na ngayong wala na si Matthew and our import will also be on his first year, the pressure is on guys like Ivan and Dawn to step up to be the leader kasi sila na yung beterano.”

The youth is also very much evident on the bench as Fermin is a first-time head coach who will be assisted by Vince Hizon who is a PBA veteran, but doesn’t have much in terms of coaching experience as well.

Expectations are indeed low for Adamson, but its star-in-the-making already knows something about smashing through glass ceilings. In his last season in the Juniors, Tungcab spearheaded a Baby Falcon squad short on talent all the way to the Final Four.

“Kami, we’ll take it one game at a time. Pero malay natin diba,” Fermin mused.

Adamson’s season tips off on Saturday at the Araneta Coliseum against University of Sto. Tomas. The game will be broadcast LIVE on ABS-CBN Sports+Action Channel 23 at 4:00 PM and will also be streamed LIVE on sports.abs-cbn.com.

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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