UAAP: Adamson believes it's high time to get over the hump

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Sep 05, 2018 07:05 PM
UAAP: Adamson believes it's high time to get over the hump
Adamson has had it with falling short of the Finals

HOW’D THEY DO LAST SEASON? 9-5, lost to La Salle in the Final Four

YES, THEY’RE STILL HERE: Jerrick Ahanmisi, Jonathan Espeleta, Sean Manganti, Koko Pingoy, Papi Sarr

WELCOME TO THE FAMILY: CJ Catapusan, Jed Colonia, Jerom Lastimosa

GOOD LUCK ON FUTURE ENDEAVORS: Tyrus Hill, Kurt Lojera, Robbie Manalang, Dawn Ochea

WHAT SHOULD WE EXPECT FROM ADAMSON?

In Franz Pumaren’s first year as head coach, Adamson University got the fourth-seed before getting ousted by De La Salle University.

In coach Franz’s second season, they got the third-seed before getting ousted anew by La Salle.

The Soaring Falcons are believers that third time’s the charm, though – especially as they are bringing back a battle-hardened, title-hungry core that is, on paper, better than what their tormentor Green Archers have.

“I think we overachieved during our first season under my watch, but basically, our idea right now is to have a better finish than the previous two seasons.” – head coach Franz Pumaren

Jerrick Ahanmisi, Jonathan Espeleta, Sean Manganti, Koko Pingoy, and Papi Sarr make up a fearsome fivesome that is right up there with the league’s best.

And even with Robbie Manalang, Dawn Ochea, Tyrus Hill, and Kurt Lojera gone, talented youngsters like Jerom Lastimosa and Magbuhos brothers Vince and Wilfrey have taken their place.

“Half of the team are all rookies. Basically, we’re just hoping the young guys can mature quicky.” – head coach Franz Pumaren

With that, Adamson is not only targeting getting back at La Salle, but perhaps even a long-awaited, much-wanted Finals berth – and who knows, even the championship?

WHO IS/ARE THE PLAYER/S TO WATCH OUT FOR FROM ADAMSON?

For Adamson to take the next step, Ahanmisi should also take the next step from star to superstar. That means doing much more than scoring he already has on lockdown.

“Jerrick is a very special player. There’s no doubt he can shoot the lights out, but basically, you’ll be seeing a different Jerrick. I’ve talked to him and he knows that for us to reach another level, he has to start asserting himself.” – head coach Franz Pumaren

Right beside him should be Manganti and Espeleta who are out to spread their own wings as two-way forwards,

The big cloud hovering about the heads of the Soaring Falcons, however, is Pingoy and if he is at full strength.

The court general has been dealing with a foot injury that kept him out of the PBA D-League and the Filoil Preseason, but now, says he will be back in action. He admitted he’s not at 100 percent yet, but will play through the pain to help his team.

WHY SHOULD WE ROOT FOR ADAMSON?

Adamson’s last two seasons ended at the hands of Ben Mbala and La Salle.

Those losses have only fueled their fire, though, and now, it’s high time for the Soaring Falcons to finally break through.

The darkhorse is a darkhorse no more and, in fact, has an inside track for a twice-to-beat advantage. That is the very definition of slowly, but surely.

“We have to outwork everybody for us to be really competitive this season. That’s why (you all) will see these guys work hard to achieve their dreams.” – head coach Franz Pumaren

WHERE WOULD ADAMSON BE AT THE END OF UAAP SEASON 81?

The twice-to-beat advantage is Adamson’s to lose.

After defending champion Ateneo de Manila University, the Soaring Falcons have the best chances at a top two finish in the elimination round. We can all count on the fact that Ahanmisi and company will go all out to make that happen.

Twice-to-beat or not, though, Adamson will be in the Final Four for the third season in a row.

WHEN IS ADAMSON’S FIRST GAME IN UAAP SEASON 81?

Adamson puts up the first tough test for defending champion Ateneo on September 9.

Of course, It All Begins Here on S+A, S+A HD, LIGA, LIGA HD, and livestream.

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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