If the second quarter is anything to go by, this will be a fun season for Adamsonians.
After a rocky first quarter and a rude awakening courtesy of UST veterans Kevin Ferrer and Ed Daquioag who were present when coach Pido Jarencio was instructing them to bully the heck out of the league MVP, the young, inexperienced Falcons showed a level of swagger exemplified through the image of Nico Capote hitting a three-pointer from three feet beyond the arc and licking his fingers in satisfaction.
At the start of the game, I could feel the collective hearts of my “klasmeyts” sink.
Oh no, they’re at it again… Adamson is still the same bottom dweller they were last year. They are going to roll over and die. *Flop* *Flop* *Flop* Just like a fish out of water…
And then 10 minutes ended and the second quarter began.
Adamson started cutting into the lead. Bucket after bucket, stop after stop, suddenly the Adamsonian crowd was alive! It was a ball game! They’re not fish out of water! This is frigging exciting!
A rookie team struggling to score in the opening quarter is understandable. In fact it is to be expected. First game jitters. But a veteran team struggling to score against a rookie team? Just to remind you, but at least three of UST’s players have already been to the UAAP Finals. And yet they managed only six points against Adamson in that quarter.
Surprisingly (or maybe not) the numerous defensive stops Adamson got in the second quarter was a result of their former coach’s favorite tactic, the 2-3 zone. Yes, UST managed only two made field goals that quarter because of a zone defense which they probably should have seen coming.
Karim Abdul was denied the ball for most of the game, either by UST’s design or Adamson’s. Either way it worked in Adamson’s favor as despite not receiving many touches, he still contributed to UST’s offense at 125.4 points per 100 possessions (offensive rating).
What did Adamson in eventually was the sloppy execution on offense which resulted in a 29.5% turnover rate. That meant every three times they brought up the ball, one of them was a turnover, and that’s not even counting the missed shots.
The bountiful turnovers allowed UST to go on a frenzy in transition. And with Kevin Ferrer and Ed Daquioag bolstering their lineup, the Growling Tigers was sure to make the most of Adamson’s miscues.
But the glimmer of jittery silver lining in this loss was how they fought back. Ball movement, defense and working to get better position, these played the biggest role in the second quarter comeback that got people bouncing in their seats.
Standing above his brothers was Joseph Nalos, doing everything on offense, shooting, cutting, slashing and even getting assists. Without a go-to scorer just yet, the Falcons have the luxury of letting their guards dictate the play.
The final take away from this is that the Falcons will definitely be pesky, especially against other regrouping teams. While the veil of uncertainty still shrouds most teams, it is the best time to strike, and strike hard Adamson must!
Will this be a fun season? Definitely.