UP falls short in first game minus ‘leader’ Bo Perasol
MANILA, Philippines—University of the Philippines looked to have Far Eastern University beat to start its second round campaign but it needed just one piece to complete the puzzle, and that was head coach Bo Perasol.
Despite the spirited late-game run, the Fighting Maroons came up shoet in the end, falling, 82-79, to start their three-game stretch without Perasol on a sour note in the UAAP Season 82 men’s basketball tournament.
Momentarily taking Perasol’s spot is head assistant Ricky Dandan, a former head coach of the Fighting Maroons.
“Of course it’s different just because he’s the leader of the team as the head coach,” said swingman Kobe Paras Sunday at Mall of Asia Arena. “We don’t really want to focus on that though because we have coach Ricky for the next two games so we’re just blessed even though coach Bo is not here.”
Perasol was suspended at the end of UP’s first round campaign when he shouted profanities and took an offensive stance against referee Jaime Rivano in the Fighting Maroons’ 89-63 loss to defending champion Ateneo in a game where he was also ejected.
The league slaps an automatic one-game suspension for anyone who’s thrown out of the game but basketball commissioner Jensen Ilagan deemed that Perasol’s actions toward Rivano went overboard thus, meriting him an additional two games.
Without Perasol, UP fizzled out in the overtime period against the Tamaraws who squandered a commanding lead.
FEU held a 60-43 lead heading into the fourth but only to get outscored, 26-9, in the final 10 minutes of regulation.
A couple of big shots from Ken Tuffin and Wendell Comboy’s pull-up jumper with 18.3 seconds saved the day for the Tamaraws.
“We were really sloppy on defense,” said center Bright Akhuetie. “We wanted it for coach Bo, but you know how it is, we didn’t do a good job defensively. But we still Bo-lieve.”
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