With things looking up, Tamaraws make late UAAP Final Four push | Inquirer Sports
UAAP MEN’S CAGING

With things looking up, Tamaraws make late UAAP Final Four push

By: - Reporter / @junavINQ
/ 04:20 AM November 01, 2022
OMAR JOHN VS PATRICK TCHUENTE

Patrick Tchuente (left) has turned out to be a formidable force in the middle for the Tamaraws. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.net

Revitalized after three wins in a row, the Far Eastern University (FEU) Tamaraws have left behind a degrading trail of setbacks and are looking at a resurgence that could hopefully take them all the way to the Final Four of Season 85 of the UAAP men’s basketball championship.

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Kicking off the season with a loathsome 0-5 record, the Tamaraws are now the second hottest team in the league after defending champion University of the Philippines, which has won four straight for a stranglehold of the lead at 7-1.

“Our goal in the second round is to get back at all the teams that beat us [in the first round],’’ said FEU coach Olsen Racela after chalking up his third straight victory at the expense of University of the East (UE) on Sunday.

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With Ateneo (5-2) and National University (5-3) ahead by two games, the Tamaraws could find themselves fighting for the last Final Four slot with the Warriors (3-5) and La Salle and Adamson, who are at 3-4.

“Our matches against these teams (La Salle and Adamson) will be crucial. We should get as many wins as possible. But in the UAAP, it’s easier said than done,’’ said Racela.

Bouncing back against these teams in the second round will no doubt boost their Final Four chances and the Tamaraws get a crack at the Green Archers on Wednesday before clashing with the Falcons.

“La Salle is coming off a loss, so we expect them to go really hard. We’ll do our homework, scout them and look at what we did wrong in our first-round game and see what happens,’’ said Racela.

“La Salle will be well rested. That’s their advantage. While for a team that relies on energy like us, we have to find a way to recover and have that same energy [we had against UE].’’

Patrick Tchuente has become assertive in the lane lately while Xyrus Torres rediscovered his shooting touch, factors that brought the Tamaraws to fearsome form—which Racela hopes hasn’t come too late in the day.

Added firepower has also been coming from L-Jay Gonzales, wingmen Patrick Sleat and Bryan Sajonia along with veteran forward Cholo Añonuevo.

Far Eastern had just nine turnovers against the Warriors, and this is something Racela feels they should build on in their succeeding encounters. INQ

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