Well, the Falcons didn’t lose by 20+ points this time, which is good.

Step by step, the Falcons are growing right before our very eyes. Two games ago against Ateneo, they could barely put up a fight. Now, they’re running their halfcourt offense to much better success and even improvising as they go. Clearly, their battle against UST was the best they’ve played after getting better with each game, but the question lies: Was it AdU playing better or UST playing poorly?

To answer that question we go into the stats:

Qtr Scoring 1st 2nd 3rd 4th


13 14 13 10


17 15 13 4

Looking at the quarter scoring, we can see that it was a low-scoring affair.

FG per Qtr 1st 2nd 3rd 4th


5/13 4/16 3/11 3/14


5/16 6/15 5/18 1/12

FT per Qtr 1st 2nd 3rd 4th


2/4 6/6 7/10 4/8


6/9 3/4 1/1 2/4

Both teams shot horribly from the field with Adamson doing only slightly better in the first half. In the second half, Adamson’s production from the field dwindled and so did their scoring. That four-point quarter (something Adamson teams of the past were famous for forcing opposing teams into) was the direct result of the simplest defensive scheme in the basketball book- the 2-3 zone.

UST won this game from the line. They were aware that they were not going to get anything from the field, therefore turned their attention to attacking the basket and getting fouls called. Adamson, on the other hand, couldn’t penetrate the zone, resulting in a slump in free throws toward the end of the game.

This game being close could be due in part to the fact that Adamson threw out a 2-3 zone the entire game, slowing down UST’s offense but mainly because UST could not make their shots and have yet to make them this season.

The hot-headed Coach Duremndes can’t be happy with losing by one, especially since they were in control of most of the game and then suddenly everyone fell asleep. Reporters and announcers are dubbing him as a disciplinarian coach, befitting as he just allowed his boys to get tortured without giving them anything to fix their problem.

Reviewing the Keys to the Game

Force the ball to Ferrer

It kinda worked. Out of the 38 minutes Karim Abdul was on the floor, he only attempted five shots throughout the game, making two and getting to the line five times. For a force like him to get so few attempts is an anomaly I attribute that to the 2-3 zone the Falcons had on UST.

Ferrer was on the floor nearly eight minutes less than Abdul, yet he took more than double the attempts of Abdul with 13 from the floor and getting to the line four times. He was clearly the less efficient scorer as he made only three out his 13 shots, but it didn’t stop him from getting into double figures.

What saved UST was the emergence of Louie Vigil who shot an efficient 4 of 6 from the field and did his part from the charity stripe converting 3 of his 5 free throws. Had UST gone to Vigil more often, they might have had less offensive woes.


The rebound totals were equal leading to this close game. Karim Abdul got his usual nine rebounds which was handily matched by Jansen Rios’ 10. The weird stat is Sheak Sheriff who is a point guard yet rebounded eight missed shots. Did the Adamson guards just forget to box him out or something?

Matching UST’s rebounding output meant they were denying UST second chances and getting second chances of their own which led to eight points this game. In a game this tight, those were eight big points.

Run… again!

To the credit of the Falcons, they finally learned to run a halfcourt set. They adjusted on the double high screen and started running the horns off an entry pass to one of the post players. It lead to better ball movement, better ball rotation and better attempts at the basket (instead of just having to heave them at the last second).

Their success, however, still came off runs. The Falcons scored seven fastbreak points to UST’s none. Most of their shots came off scrambles and broken plays. It was less a function of actually running the play and finishing that it was the defense stumbling and making mistakes. Unforced mistakes that don’t happen often, but fortunately the Falcons were able to recognize and take advantage of.

When the UST anchored down and laid the 2-3 zone on the Falcons, they kept settling for jumpshots after running their set. The fact they only got a  field goal the entire quarter and only four free throw attempts shows how the Falcons were unable to execute on offense. Only Matthew Aquino was able to score that quarter, which isn’t a good thing when Iñigo and Pedrosa were doing well prior to that quarter.

Final Thoughts

The Falcons clearly lost this very winnable game. It wasn’t winnable because they were playing well, but because their opponent was playing poorly. Coach Duremndes has to keep his team marching to the beat of their own drum each game regardless of how well or poorly their opponent is playing. Their goal right now is not to win games but to elevate their level of play to a point where they can win games. This last game against UST shows how raw the team is but how determined they are to do things right.