MANILA, Philippines – Far Eastern University coach Olsen Racela hopes to build on their first win to boost their morale after finishing five skaters in the UAAP Season 85 men’s basketball tournament.
After Tamaraws was defeated by Worst start to Final Four era 0-5Racela reminds his team to keep working hard.
“I told them, it’s not what happens to you but what happens to you that matters. Even when we are falling, I told them to stay optimistic and in the end, if we work hard, it will soon pay off,” said the FEU coach.
It finally paid off for the FEU for it earned his first win of the season after dominating the University of Santo Tomas75-60, on Wednesdays at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Bryan Sajonia, who showed the road with 23 points with a perfect two-shot 9/9, is grateful for the way Racela kept them on their toes despite a disappointing losing streak.
“Coach Olsen told us to be confident with all our shots and trust each other. We can’t be selfish like we did in the last game. Because of our loss, we have to maintain solidity as a team,” Sajonia said in the Philippines.
Sajonia also thanked the fans who stayed up late at the venue to cheer them on, which gave them a huge boost.
“The support of the FEU community has had a huge effect on us. For us, it’s a much-needed break for our upcoming matches,” he said.
Besides Sajonia, L-Jay Gonzales and Xyrus Torres each scored 17 points showing the collective effort of Tamaraws, which they lacked in previous matches.
“Everybody really showed up and played. In previous games, only a handful contributed. It was really a team effort and the loss had another effect on our morale. However, I am still proud of this team because they never give up. Hopefully it helps us, especially in terms of our morale and confidence,” said Racela.
FEU tries to maintain its momentum against No. 1 seed National University (5-1) on Sunday at Ynares Center Antipolo.
“This UAAP season, anything is possible. Any team can beat any team. So that’s a good balance in terms of competition. We’ll try. I know they are playing really well but we hope that we can push this win,” said Racela.
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