UAAP: Ateneo captain Mike Nieto: 'Pati naman Golden State, natatalo'

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Oct 10, 2018 08:30 PM
UAAP: Mike Nieto: 'Pati naman Golden State, natatalo'
Ateneo will do nothing but learn from a loss, so says captain Mike Nieto

On Wednesday, Far Eastern University took down its second straight title contender.

Just three days after giving erstwhile unbeaten Adamson University its first taste of defeat, the Tamaraws charged right through defending champion Ateneo de Manila University.

For Blue Eagles’ head coach Tab Baldwin, it was just a day when they didn’t hit their shots – and it didn’t help them that their opponents’ defense was stout as well. “FEU played great defense, played a better game than us. Our offense was really lacking, but certainly, the effort was there,” he told reporters post-game.

He then continued, “I don’t think you can play a game and force 27 turnovers and get 19 offensive rebounds and feel bad about your effort. We feel good about our effort, but we just didn’t hit our shots.”

Indeed, the defending champions won the battle in terms of turnovers, 11-27, and in terms of offensive rebounds, 19-10. However, they shot 29.7 percent from the field compared to the Tamaraws’ 45 percent clip.

Team captain Mike Nieto could only agree with his mentor. “Our effort was there, but we still fell short to FEU and FEU is a strong team. Even though they lost to UST and UE, they’re still one of the teams to beat this season,” he said.

He then continued, “We offer no excuses for this loss and you just have to give credit to FEU for giving their best.”

All that Ateneo could do now is move forward from this loss. “Ikagagaling lang din naman namin ‘to and we just have to enjoy these opportunities. ‘Di naman palaging pwede ikaw ang panalo e,” Nieto said.

Indeed, it’s becoming clearer and clearer that what many had thought in the preseason, a season sweep for the Blue Eagles, will end up as just that – a thought in the preseason. “We’re just a regular team. Even though we represented the country sa Jones Cup very well, we’re still a team that can lose,” their skipper said.

He then continued, “Yun nga, yung evidence is natalo kami nang dalawang beses, but sabi ko nga, we just have to enjoy these opportunities kasi pati naman Golden State Warriors, natatalo. Hindi naman lahat, perfect.”

For the defending champions, the focus just turns to Round 2 in the Battle of Katipunan on Sunday. “We’ll show up. UP’s a very good team, but obviously, they had a very poor outing today so you got two teams that are hurting after a loss,” he said.

He then continued, “A lot of proud, talented players on both teams so I suspect this is gonna be a tough game.”

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