This is a must-win for the Falcons if they are going to make any progress this season. The UE Red Warriors is no doormat as they’ve proven that they can indeed compete, turning away the defending champions despite being a veteran short. But they are not without weaknesses as their opening game loss UP exposed their inexperience.
On the inexperience, the Falcons have to capitalize. Both teams are full of young players who are seeing action in the seniors division for the first time. Both teams are ably coached. Effort and execution will decide which team comes out victorious.
If the Falcons are going to win this, they need to do two things:
In two games, the Falcons have averaged a head-scratching 27 turnovers. Against UST, this led to 11 fastbreak points; against Ateneo it led to 35, so let’s just say, those turnovers are the biggest reason they lost both games.
Trust the offense
Too many times in the second half of the game against Ateneo, the Falcons lost the ball or were easily stopped on offense because they were trying to feed their foreign player, Papi Sarr. Feeding your big in the paint is good. Having your big post up is good. But forcing the ball to him and watching him cough up the ball or put up a bad shot is not.
The Falcons have to realize that the strength of the motion offense comes from the name itself, motion. Without cutters from the weak side or ball rotation, the offense becomes stagnant, and Sarr is nowhere near being Ingrid Sewa who could muscle his way into the paint every time.
This is a must-win for the Falcons, not because the standings are depending on it, but because they need to show that they are learning from their mistakes. So far they’ve shown that they can run an offense, that they won’t allow themselves to be pegged at 25. Now it’s time to show that they can run the offense consistently and maybe come up with a stop or two on the other end.
Learn from mistakes.