No Mac Belo game winners were needed in this game. The FEU Tamaraws were just too hot to handle as they crushed the DLSU Green Archers, 93-75. FEU once again proved why they are the favorites to win the UAAP title this season after a painful one-point loss to UST. The Green Archers now face a lot of questions whether they are real contenders early into the season. The Green Archers were able to give FEU a fight to keep it close for half of the game before the Tamaraws went on a 20-0 run to pull away from the Green Archers, behind great ball movement, hot shooting, and great defense which spelled the doom for DLSU.
What went wrong for La Salle?
- Jeron Teng can’t do things all by himself. While he was able to keep La Salle close for half of the game as he poured 19 of his 29 points in the first half, it was not enough. The Tamaraws started clogging his lane in the second half and the other players couldn’t hit their shots while Teng tried to be the playmaker for DLSU. La Salle became too predictable in the game relying on Jeron too much, and FEU simply knew what to do on the defensive end against La Salle in the 2nd half.
- Three-point shooting killed it on both ends. During FEU’s run in the second half, a lot of their shots came from downtown, connecting on 14/34 for the game. FEU had a lot of wide open looks from downtown, mainly due to their good ball movement and DLSU failure to close out on the shooters. DLSU had their own misery as well from downtown, shooting just 2/14 from three-point range. (Somewhere out there, we just wish Renren Ritualo or JVee Casio, maybe even Almond Vosotres was still donning the Green and White jersey.)
- Where is Jason Perkins and Thomas Torres? Teng did most of the damage for La Salle. Andrei Caracut, Julian Sargent, and Prince Rivero did their share of the contributions, but we are still looking for Perkins and Torres (two of the three holdovers from the 2013 championship team, along with Teng). They were supposed to be an integral part in this year’s DLSU team but has gone missing this season. Perkins, just had five points and four rebounds, while Torres has been just awful this season.
- Where is the defense? In my pregame primer, I emphasized that DLSU should limit FEU’s offensive game, keeping Belo and/or Tolomia checked and shouldn’t play the game at FEU’s pace. During the game, they kept a lot of FEU’s shooters open, Mac Belo had 18 points and Mike Tolomia had 20 points, and they simply tried to keep up with FEU’s pace. All of which lead to La Salle’s doom.
While its still early in the season, I think its time for La Salle to pick things up as early as now. They’ve seen that they can’t take anyone too lightly, now they’ve also seen that they have a lot of work to do to match-up with contenders. Three games into the season, this DLSU Green Archer team just hope that they may be able to address their weaknesses and improve their strengths, and they may still have a bright season ahead of them.
Featured Image credit: Kristine Barreiro, GoArchers.com