Will the De La Salle Green Archers be able to repeat or will their plans be put on hold? They have shed three members in Luigi Dela Paz, Gab Reyes, and Jarelan Tampus to make room for fresh blood who are undeniably an upgrade over the aforementioned Archers.
The holdovers are led by King Archer, Jeron Teng, and Norbert Torres, on his last tour of duty probably for the Taft-based cagers. Emerging big man Arnold Van Opstal, Almond Vosotros, Thomas Torres, and Jason Perkins are but a few of the familiar names to once again don the Green and White.
Season 76 Stats Leaders
Jeron Teng (14.6 ppg)
|Jason Perkins (9.6 rpg)||Thomas Torres (2.9 apg)||Almond Vosotros (1.1 spg)||Jason Perkins (52.8 percent)||Jason Perkins (52.6 percent)||Thomas Torres (72.2 percent FT)|
DLSU is probably the biggest team in the UAAP right now. Torres and AVO alone can make opposing frontlines break a sweat and question themselves. Not to mention, the Green Archers have the most cerebral coach in college basketball today in Juno Sauler. Sauler managed to bring La Salle to the Finals despite a somewhat mediocre first round in Season 76 where their initial play was bobbing up and down in the consistency meter.
The Archers are at their best when they are crashing the boards, averaging 47.6 glass cleaners a game. Jason Perkins leads the team with 9.6 boards a game with Norbert Torres’s 8.1 coming in second. AVO, for all his size, has managed to snag only 6.3 rebounds a game even if he was playing a minute less than Torres. King Archer Jeron Teng was a tad bit better being able to snatch 6.6 rebounds a game for someone his size.
By adding rookies Abu Tratter, Julian Sargent, and LSGH man-child Prince Rivero, the Green Archers just got bigger. And we haven’t even mentioned Ben Mbala who can suit up once the Jerie Pingoy rule gets repealed by the Senate. Can you just imagine the size La Salle will parade? Rivero will immediately make an impact as a sub when Perkins or AVO needs a breather. He’ll be able to provide points and haul down rebounds like in his high school days. I am puzzled by the addition of Terence Mustre since the Archers are loaded on guards at the moment.
AVO has added more to his game and will soon be the best big man in college. I’m fully expecting Juno Sauler to pack that paint and milk it till they reach the Final Four. But that doesn’t mean they’ll be completely abandoning the perimeter. You cannot do that with Almond Vosotros, fondly called Voso-tres, lurking around. If teams decide to contest the lanes and the paint while leaving Vosotros free, those bombs will fly and even if he’s on a sour shooting day, they will eventually hit their mark.
One glaring weakness of DLSU is their field goal shooting. The team shot a collective 39.4 percent. While you can argue that it is college ball, shooting that bad makes winning a championship all the more astounding.
Of the 13 players on their roster, only three players (Norbert Torres, Arnold Van Opstal, and Jason Perkins) shot at least 40 percent from the field. King Archer Jeron Teng, who led all scorers with 14.6 a game, shot a horrid 38.7 percent from the field.
Free-throw shooting is also a problem for the Archers. I observed through the years that aside from JVee Casio, there was never an archer able to hit consistently at the line. Season 76 was no different. The team shot a horrible 60.3 percent from the stripe.
Everything that has to do with shooting from a distance beyond 15 feet seems to be a problem for La Salle. Their 3-point percentage clocked in at only 26 percent no thanks to Jeron Teng hitting only 0.1 threes a ball game while Almond Vosotros only netted 2 out of 9 attempts on a good day. Their bigs, except Arnold Van Opstal, extend their range to the three-point line but only Jason Perkins can hit it on a consistent basis.
If a zone defense is employed against La Salle and Jeron Teng’s cutting lanes are closed down (as was the case in the Finals against UST), they’re in for a dogfight. Another thing to note is that La Salle is not one of the best in terms of sharing the basketball. Their top passer barely hits three assists. Forcing them into one-on-one situations will result in garbage plays.
If Vosotros explodes and is not building a house, you can bet your bucks that the Green Archers will be hard to stop. Jeron Teng will get his numbers by hook or by crook. Same thing with Jason Perkins and Arnold Van Opstal, if he continues to track upwards. However I’m looking at Prince Rivero to tip the balance for the Archers. He’s big and strong for his age and can definitely school veteran big men in the post.
Top two. That’s the least this cast of holdovers can grab. A Finals appearance is highly likely. 12-2 sounds cool.