UE coach calls double-overtime loss 'a tragedy'
|UE head coach Boycie Zamar (C) says the Red Warriors' double-overtime loss against FEU was a "tragedy." Photo by Mark Cristino for ABS-CBNnews.com|
MANILA, Philippines – University of the East (UE) head coach Boycie Zamar likened the Red Warriors’ double-overtime loss at the hands of Far Eastern University (FEU) to that of a ship that sank just before reaching the pier.
The Red Warriors held a seven-point lead, 84-77, with just 17 seconds remaining in the first overtime, but the Tamaraws put together a blistering 8-1 run in the final seconds to force another extension.
In the second overtime, the Red Warriors failed to close out on MVP candidate Terrence Romeo, who buried a back-breaking three, and could not execute their offense in the final minutes en route to a painful 94-98 loss.
“Kumbaga, tragedy eh,” Zamar told a small group of sports writers following their loss. “Kumbaga, malapit ka na sa pier eh, nabangga ka pa, nalubog ka pa.”
Zamar believed it was a lack of maturity rather than a lack of energy that ultimately spelled doom for his players.
“It’s all about maturity pa rin. Nakita naman natin, natalo kami, four losses, and it’s all about the three-points. So let’s go back to the basics – stop the three-points, and make your free throws,” he said.
He said that his star center, Charles Mammie, should learn to stop playing “on and off” even as he provides a dominating presence inside the court.
“Charles cannot play on and off, switch on and off. He cannot play that way,” Zamar stressed.
The coach also challenged the rest of his players to step up and provide ample back-up to both Mammie and point guard Roi Sumang.
“Hindi naman pwede ‘yung Sumang, Mammie. Charles Mammie, Roi Sumang. Hindi pwede ‘yun,” he said.
The key now for the Red Warriors is to survive the “tragedy,” especially as they are now bunched in the middle of the league standings.
“Kailangan namin umahon, kailangan mag-survive,” said Zamar. “Kailangan kami mag-langoy ng sarili namin, kailangan kami gumamit ng raft, kailangan ng Bangka. We have to do many ways to survive this race to the Final Four.”
The loss to FEU snapped the Red Warriors’ four-game losing streak.