I already know Jeron's weakness: Ferrer
|UST's Kevin Ferrer (7) defends La Salle's Jeron Teng in Game 1 of the UAAP Season 76 best-of-three Finals. Photo by Mark Cristino for ABS-CBNnews.com|
MANILA, Philippines – After outplaying two-time UAAP Most Valuable Player Bobby Ray Parks in the Final Four, University of Santo Tomas (UST) swingman Kevin Ferrer met his next challenge head-on.
Ferrer, who outplayed National University’s Parks on both ends of the floor in the semi-finals, is now tasked with limiting La Salle’s Jeron Teng in their best-of-three finals series.
He did well in UST’s 73-72 victory in Game 1, as Teng scored 15 points but needed 16 shots to get there. The former Rookie of the Year made only five of his 14 attempts from inside the arc, and was goaded by Ferrer into taking long jumpers that he usually missed.
“Matagal na kaming magkasama ni Jeron,” said Ferrer, referring to the time when they were teammates in the RP Youth Team. “So matagal ko na ring binabantayan si Jeron, so alam ko na rin ‘yung weaknesses niya.”
Having Jeron’s brother, Jeric Teng, on the UST team is also a big boost for Ferrer, as the veteran guard has been giving him tips on how to successfully defend his La Salle counterpart.
“Oo,” Ferrer answered when asked if Jeric ever gives him advice. “(Sinasabi niya na) mag-sag lang (against Jeron). At parang niloloko ko na rin si Jeron na, ‘Tira mo ‘yan.’ At nagsa-sag lang ako sa kanya.”
Jeron, who is more adept at slashing hard to the basket, could not make Ferrer pay as he bricked jumper after jumper even when left wide open by the lanky UST defender.
“I’m telling Jeron that if he gets open, just be ready,” said La Salle coach Juno Sauler after the game. “Ferrer has been helping off Jeron every time. Jeron just has to be ready for that, if they leave him open.”
Aside from limiting Teng, Ferrer also gave UST a huge boost offensively: he made five of his eight three-pointers, including the dagger triple with less than a minute to go, and finished with a team-high 20 points.