Sablan uses odd move to showcase UST's future

Paul Lintag on Nov 10, 2016 07:56 AM
Sablan uses odd move to showcase UST's future
Part of the Growling Tigers' future, Zachary Huang started for UST against Adamson.

UST head coach Boy Sablan took did something unconventional out his book of secrets Wednesday as he benched four of his main Growling Tigers in the first half against Adamson.

The rookie mentor said that the move, which was decided a day before the Falcons game, was twofold.

One, it was to discipline team captain Louie Vigil, Kent Lao, Marvin Lee, and Renzo Subido. Two, it was to showcase the talent UST is going to field in the UAAP for Season 80.

We're here to talk about the second reason.

"Napanood niyo ba yun? Yun na yung future, for next year. Yun yung tatanungin niyo di ba? Pinakita ko lang yung future next year," Sablan told reporters as he emerged from the dugouts at the MOA Arena.

Already eliminated in the Final Four race, Sablan sat out arguably his four best players in the first 20 minutes against Adamson and went with Jon Sheriff, Regie Basibas, Jan Macasaet, Zach Huang, and William Afoakwah as his starters.

The Tigers trailed the Falcons by five, 32-37, at the break.

"Kailangan ko ipakita yung future ng UST, which is nag-deliver naman sila," Sablan said of his actions. "Paunti-unti para ma-develop natin yung confidence and the same time, yung practice syempre para for next year."

On the surface, the move was brilliant for Sablan as his unconventional lineup kept things close early on andthe Tigers ended up losing by 15 to the young and hungry Falcons once the four benched players saw action in the second half.

Statistics showed that Louie Vigil (14 minutes) and Kent Lao (20 minutes) were both minus 10 on the floor in the second half for the Tigers. Marvin Lee (six minutes) and Renzo Subido (four minutes) were also no good on the floor, earning negative plus/minus marks in limited action.

Talking about stats though, UST's "future" was no better as only Macasaet earned a positive plus/minus rating. In fact, Jon Sheriff, who is by no means a part of the future Tigers, topscored the squad with 13 points.

Basibas (eight points), Macasaet (six points), Huang (four points), and Afoakwah (three points) rounded out the production from the starters. 

Despite an overall terrible game on the part of UST, Sablan stands by his decision to bench his four regulars, two of them playing in their final UAAP season, in order to showcase the team's future.

"Pero happy ako kasi maganda future ko, nakita niyo naman kahit papaano," he said.


Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8

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