Nowhere to go but forward for struggling State U

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Oct 08, 2017 09:26 PM
Nowhere to go but forward for struggling State U
MOVING ON. UP was unable to build on the momentum from its biggest win in over a decade.

Apparently, there is somewhere else to go aside from up for the University of the Philippines.

After their biggest win in over a decade at the expense of defending champion De La Salle University, they have now dropped three games in a row and dropped to sixth in the standings.

Team captain Paul Desiderio was not mincing his words in saying that their morale is not where it should be. “Siguro ngayon, down kami no? Down kasi tatlong sunod na talo, pero hopefully sa practice, mabago na namin,” he told reporters after their record worsened to 3-4 at the end of the first round.

Things may look even bleaker for the Fighting Maroons with starting point guard Jun Manzo’s status uncertain. “Nawala si Jun kanina so medoy nahirapan ako agad kasi naka-focus na lahat (ng depensa) sa akin,” Desiderio said.

And so, the skipper is urging the other guys in his squad to wake up. “Siguro, yung teammates ko, kailangang mag-step up na rin kasi malaking bagay nga kung wala si Jun kasi siya nagdadala ng offense namin,” he said.

Head coach Bo Perasol shared the same sentiment. “We need a lot more from Juan and Javi [Gomez de Liano] and Ibrahim [Ouattara] and the other usual guys I use. For us, lahat dapat may contributions kahit two points, four points,” he said.

Indeed, only through total team effort could State U close out a contest – something they weren’t able to do against Far Eastern University and then Adamson University. “We’re all disappointed in our last two games. Sabi nga ng mga bata, hindi na pwedeng ‘Muntik na tayong manalo,’” the mentor said.

He then continued, “We just have to find a way to get through that hump.”

Still, Desiderio said they remain upbeat that they can reach the heights they have already been to. “Kailangan na naming mag-move on kasi wala na kaming magagawa, talo na yun. Move forward na lang talaga,” he expressed.

What’s important now is for the slumping squad to stay together. “Tiwala lang kami sa isa’t-isa. Kaya pa naman e, may seven games pa naman e so kailangan lang namin ibalik yung confidence namin,” their team captain said.

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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