CONSIDER the Far Eastern University Tamaraws as an underdog in the Final Four setup of the 80th University Athletic Association of the Philippines men’s basketball tournament.
The Tams have a long way to go, considering that they are the last squad to make it to the semis after their 71-54 victory over the third-seed Adamson Falcons.
And with an awesome fighting spirit, Tams’ coach Olsen Racela is confident that they will be able to hurdle the challenges that will come their way when they clash with twice-to-beat, and top seeded Ateneo Blue Eagles at 4 p.m. this Sunday at the Araneta Coliseum.
On the other hand, Blue Eagles’ head coach Tab Baldwin is expecting a tough encounter with the Tamaraws, but at the same time upbeat that members of the team will step up when the time comes.
“Even though if we won today, we got to leave it behind. The golden apple that we’re still after is still in front of us. So, what really matters is the next game, right?” said Baldwin after the Blue Eagles took a 76-79 loss to the La Salle Green Archers.
Because of this, Ateneo missed an opportunity for an outright Finals berth.
Meanwhile, the defending champion La Salle Green Archers are expected to be more focused when they clash with the Adamson Falcons at 4 p.m. today at the Big Dome. Peter Atencio
Coach Aldin Ayo, who has finally spoken after many weeks of silence, said the team’s focus will allow the Green Archers to quickly hurdle the Falcons.
“We are not going to wait there and allow them to beat us. We are going to do our part. We are going to compete and do whatever it takes just to win in the right way,” said Ayo.
The Green Archers swept their second-round assignments, which came after they lost two games in the early part of the year.