Ateneo set for tough test in World University Basketball Series
MANILA, Philippines–Ateneo is expecting tough competition facing elite teams in the World University Basketball Series (WUBS) from August 9 to 11 in Tokyo, Japan.
The Blue Eagles, though, said they have not scouted future opponents, but are surely not underestimating them.
“We haven’t scouted them but we’re pretty sure they are really good teams, they are champion teams [for a reason] and they are legit competitions,” Geo Chiu said during a press conference at Dragon’s Nest in Quezon City on Thursday.
Four of Asia’s best university teams will be competing in a round-robin format. Ateneo will be joined by Tokai University from Japan, National Chengchi University from Chinese-Taipei and Universities Pelita Harapan from Indonesia.
“Four of the best teams in Asia will be competing here so it will really be a good experience for them,” said WUBS Gen. Sec. Naoya Okamoto, who was also in attendance during the presser via Zoom.
Chris Koon acknowledged the team’s “next man up” mentality and made sure it was going to be the deciding factor for their WUBS run.
“In Ateneo, we always talk about our ‘next man up’ mentality so we’ll be expecting everyone to step up,” the 6-foot-5 swingman said.
Joining Chiu, Koon, BJ Andrade, Dave Ildefonso and Ange Kouame are holdovers Matthew Daves, Joshua Lazaro, Gab Gomez and Forth Padrigao.
Making their Ateneo debuts are Sean Quitevis, Jacob Lao, Kai Ballungay, Andrew Bongo, Inand Fornillos, Joseph Obasa, JC Fetalvero, Paul Garcia and Kyle Ong, who had a special mention from future Blue Eagles team captain BJ Andrade.
“[Kyle] Ong is a very special player for us ’cause he’s been working well for us,” Andrade said.
The team will be flying to Japan on August 7.