UAAP 82: Adamson rookie Sabandal feeling bittersweet his career-high came in a loss

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Oct 26, 2019 08:31 PM
Sabandal feeling bittersweet his career-high came in a loss
(Photo courtesy of UAAP)

ANTIPOLO - Adamson University has lost seven of its last eight games in the UAAP 82 Men's Basketball Tournament.

The latest of which was a close one as the Soaring Falcons bowed to University of Sto. Tomas, Saturday at Ynares Center here.

Still, they had a silver lining in the form of rookie Joem Sabandal who scored a career-best 18 points to go along with ix rebounds in just 17 minutes of play.

For the prized prospect, though, there was nothing to celebrate about his career game. "50-50 e kasi yun nga, best game ko, pero talo," he told reporters post-game.

Without a doubt, though, the fact that Sabandal is getting into his groove is nothing but a welcome development for the San Marcelino-based squad.

This, after frustrations personally piled up for him. "Sobra rin akong na-frustrate before this kasi nga nung preseason, ang ganda ng pinakita ko tapos after ng first game this season, injury na naman," he said, talking about the left hand fracture he sustained early in the tournament that kept him out for the rest of the first round of eliminations.

He then continued, "Naniwala na lang ako kay Lord na okay lang yun at may plano siya sa akin. Magtratrabaho lang talaga ako."

The 5-foot-11 guard did just that once he was cleared to return. "Paggaling sa injury, nagtrabaho talaga ako. As in, nagpapraktis kami ng umaga tapos nage-extra shots ako ng gabi para yung kundisyon ko, bumalik talaga," he shared.

He then continued, "Yung pagiging aggressive ko sa loob, yun yung hinahanap ni coach Franz [Pumaren] sa akin. Nag-pay off naman."

Indeed, together with Jerom Lastimosa, Sabandal showed just how fearsome the Adamson backcourt would be in the foreseeable future as they went toe-to-toe with the Growling Tigers' own awesome twosome of Mark Nonoy and Renzo Subido.

Nonetheless, he is also well aware that he has a long way to go before being back to the player who made the Mythical Team in last year's UAAP Jrs. and led the Baby Falcons' return to relevance. As he put it, "Process pa rin 'to. Trabaho pa rin dapat."

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