UAAP: UE's 'Baby Tank' Alvin Pasaol has been 'upgraded'

Alvin Laqui on Sep 01, 2018 03:13 PM
UAAP: UE's 'Baby Tank' Alvin Pasaol has been 'upgraded'
Alvin Pasaol is raring and ready to fully take the reins of leadership in UE

Alvin Pasaol has established himself as one of college basketball’s greatest offensive threats after his breakout to superstardom with the UE Red Warriors last season.

The 6’3” swingman most notably dropped an absurd 49 points on Ben Mbala and then Aldin Ayo-led La Salle squad, a historic performance that turned him into a folk hero for fans and a marked man for opponents.

Pasaol knows that full well and has accepted his new mentor’s challenge on how to effectively counter the defensive pressure he will surely attract come UAAP Season 81.

“Sobrang laki ng adjustment na ginawa ko sa sarili ko,” Pasaol said. “Kasi I became a scorer nga last season pero as sinasabi nga ni coach Joe [Silva] sa akin ‘Kailangan mo i-distribute yung bola kasi marked ka na sa lahat ng ibang teams.’ Tama din naman si coach Joe sa philosophy niya na ipapasa ko muna yung bola.”

Indeed, you can expect the same heady attacking from Pasaol to be translated facilitating UE’s offense.

More than that, however, Pasaol has also accepted to become a more vocal and hands-on captain.

“Ganun pa rin (katulad) last year pero mas upgraded na Alvin as a leader, not as scorer siguro,” he said. “As a leader nga, kailangan mong i-guide yung team mo, sabihan mo sila kung ano mga mali nila, yun din yung gusto kong ma-achieve sa sarili ko as a leader.”

If the change in play style and mentality seems sudden – because it is.

But Silva, a two-time UAAP Juniors champion coach for Ateneo High School, appears to have already built a solid relationship with his squad just months after being signed.

“Kasi si Manong [Derrick Pumaren] sa amin, dati, sobrang naging tatay siya sa amin,” said Pasaol. “Ngayon, doon sa bonding namin nila coach Joe, para lang kaming magkakapatid. Si coach Joe, hindi naman masyadong ganun katanda kaya parang tropa lang namin si coach Joe.”

The solid bond the boys over in Recto are building with their proven coach also allows them to buy into their mentor’s winning mentality – a way of thinking that has Pasaol and the UE Red Warriors aiming high.

“Sobrang ngayong season na ‘to, mas eager kami, mas gutom kami pumasok ng Final Four para mapatunayan namin sa sarili namin na kaya naming manalo tsaka mapatunayan namin sa community ng UE na kaya naming manalo, kaya naming ibuhos lahat,” Pasaol said. “Gusto ko marating yung Final Four para sa aming lahat, para sa community, para sa pamilya namin. Ibubuhos naming lahat ngayon na season na ‘to. Ipapakita namin kung ano yung tunay na UE Warriors.”

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @alvinlaqui.

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