Baldwin on Ateneo loss: Adamson was ‘the hungrier team’
Ateneo coach Tab Baldwin said the Blue Eagles must show how badly they want to win, something which they failed to do in a stunning loss to Adamson on Sunday.
Baldwin felt the Blue Eagles did not come out as the “hungrier team” against the pesky Falcons, who took down the defending champions, 74-70.
“I told the guys that we are everybody’s championship game. Now we have live up to our word that every one of this game is the only one that matters,” Baldwin said after Ateneo was dealt with an early upset in the opening weekend of UAAP Season 81 men’s basketball tournament. “If we can do that then we will be fine.”
But things did not go as planned for Ateneo as Adamson staged a plucky fight led by Jerrick Ahanmisi and Papi Sarr.
Adamson converted 32 points inside the paint compared to Ateneo’s 22. The Falcons’ defense also forced the Eagles to have a bad shooting night even from point-blank range where they only made seven out of their 21 layups.
“Adamson was hungrier when it came in getting the boards in the second half. If you’re not the hungrier team, you open the door up to your opponent and today we weren’t the hungrier team,” Baldwin said, giving much credit to their opponent’s game plan.
“I just think that their preparation was outstanding and clear execution of a really good game plan. I thought they did everything and took the win. They played with their hearts out and they got the result they were looking.”
It was thanks to Adamson’s coaching staff which spent several months scouting Ateneo in the offseason.
Baldwin also pointed out his team’s sloppy play, highlighted by 19 turnovers.
“Nineteen turnovers are unacceptable and I thought some of our younger players played like a deer in headlights today. They needed to settle in to the job a little quicker and I don’t think Adamson really allowed them to.”
“We’re gonna look very closely on ourselves on the video. Those moments, possessions and occasions where we didn’t play well we have to learn from it. We have to look at ourselves and see where we played as individuals and I think from that we’ll learn where we failed as a team.”
Ateneo takes on much-improved University of the Philippines on Wednesday.
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