A second consecutive loss in overtime to end the first round of UAAP Season 81 already merited frustration for Adamson, but what made that tougher to swallow was that it came at the hands of De La Salle University.
The Soaring Falcons have yet to win one against the Taft-based Green Archers in the Franz Pumaren era after falling to their seventh straight loss against them. They also have the fact that DLSU kicked them out of the Final Four for two straight seasons hanging over their heads.
“I wanna beat them so bad. They’re number one on my list. I think they know that,” Sean Manganti said. “This one hurts but we’re just gonna take it like any other game. We’re gonna go one game at a time. We’re not going to change our mentality. We still think we belong here.”
Jerrick Ahanmisi, who led the team with 27 points in the losing effort, wants the exact same thing.
“I don’t really have much to say. I just want to beat them the next time we play them next round. We’re just gonna prepare for them and we’re gonna do everything we can to beat them next round,” he said.
They have every reason to mark that next matchup against La Salle on the calendar. Adamson led by five, 64-59, with under two minutes left in the game before firing blanks until the end of regulation and in overtime.
But Manganti, who posted 23 points, seven rebounds and four assists, could only blame themselves for the late meltdown.
“We just couldn’t execute in the end, couldn’t defend, made some bad mistakes in the end,” he lamented.
“We just gotta play better in crunch time. We really shot ourselves in the foot. We lost that game. La Salle did not beat us. We beat ourselves,” Manganti added.
The loss capped off a notable first round for the Soaring Falcons, who won their first five assignments before falling to FEU and La Salle in back-to-back assignments.
We can only expect a hungrier Adamson come second round.
“We’re just gonna prepare for every game that we have. The next game after the next game, after the next game. Our coaches are gonna do good to scout the other teams like they did in the first round and we’re just gonna take every game one game at a time,” Ahanmisi remarked.