Sports

NCAA: Letran’s coach, Bonnie Tan, considers Fran Yu’s absence in game 3


Knight Fran Yu Letran NCAA Finals

Letran defended Fran Yu in Game 2 of the NCAA Season 98 Men’s Basketball Finals against St. Benilde. NCAA photo

MANILA, Philippines—Fran Yu’s absence from Letran will be critical to the defending champions’ performance in the fourth round as the NCAA men’s basketball finals draw to a head, coach Bonnie Tan admitted.

In a televised interview with 24 Oras on Wednesday, Tan revealed that the loss of Yu will affect Letran the most during the most important part of the game.

“The biggest challenge is playing without a leader inside the pitch, how can we win, how can we finish the final game,” Tan said. “We know what Fran Yu contributes as our leader and on the field in the late game.”

Yu was booked for a disqualification in game two of the NCAA Season 98 Men’s Finals after elbowing the Blazers’ Mark Sangco at 5:29 of the second half.

Letran filed an appeal for the current captain of the Knights to play the mortal game on Sunday but almost immediately rejected by the league’s governing committee.

The graduate guard is the runner-up of the Mythical Five team and leads the league in steals at the end of the knockout round with two steals per game.

Yu is currently on target of 10.8 points, 4.4 rebounds and 4.2 assists per game.

However, top coach Tan who believes the Knights can make it through without a champion on their floor says losing a player due to technicality is not new to them.

“As a head coach, it’s sad to lose a leader on the pitch but this is not the first time this has happened.”

In the first round of the season, Louie Sangalang and Brent Paraiso sidelined two games for a disqualification against the Mapua Cardinals.

The Short Handed Knights will face the Blazers for the last time on Sunday in the all-ball game Tuesday at Ynares, Antipolo.

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