View from the Enemy: Adamson Soaring Falcons
Two teams who have been struggling will now have a chance to break their losing streak. UST Growling Tigers and Adamson Soaring Falcons are now on a three and five games losing skid, respectively. Both teams are itching to start a comeback and get back in the race for the Top Four that is now slowly slipping out of their hands.
In their previous encounter, Adamson dominated the first half but eventually collapsed in the third period due to their turnovers. They were able to spark a comeback late in the fourth quarter by virtue of their hot three point shooting. Unfortunately, the Tigers were able to composet themselves and get away with a win.
For their upcoming matchup (August 28) we can expect a slugfest between these two teams. I’m pretty sure that both teams will treat this game as a do-or-die game. Whoever shows more energy and focus will have an edge in this game.
Keys of the Game
Protect the Ball
As mentioned above, Adamson lost their round one encounter with the Tigers primarily of their turnovers. A whooping 22 turnovers were committed by the Falcons. This is seven more turnovers than the league average. And the worst part of these turnovers are that, they happened at the backcourt, which means near the goal of the Tigers. With the defense not yet set up the Tigers were able to penetrate and score easy baskets off these turnovers.
If the Falcons need to address their turnover issues, the Tigers also have their problem to resolve. They have to do a better job in their shooting. UST has been the league’s worst shooting team and is among the two teams (another team is UP) who can’t put up an effective field goal percentage of at least 40. The Tigers were only able to average 39.1 percent eFG while the norm in the league is at 42.5%. Hopefully, with Jeric Teng’s presence, they can now have a higher shooting percentage.
Half-court defense is not a problem for these two teams. What they are having a hard time with is their transition defense. In fact, UST and Adamson are the teams who give up the most fast break points at 17.2 and 16.4 points, respectively. In their last encounter, the Falcons were able to control the first half by playing tough half-court defense and running on the other side and punishing the poor transition defense of the Tigers.
This is also one of the main reasons why the Tigers and Falcons lost their respective games against Bulldogs and Eagles. Both games saw lopsided battles in the fast break points, with UST and Adamson giving up 20+ points but were only able to produce eight points. Adjustments have to be done by both teams and that team who will be able make the necessary adjustment will have an advantage.
This will be a close one. I am expecting both teams to go all out and fight for their lives. Really hard to say who will win this one. I’ll just go with my loyalty to UST, hopefully they will deliver the goods.