MANILA, Philippines – Former King Tiger Jeric was pleased to see his former teammates communicating better inside the court during the University of Santo Tomas (UST) game against the Far Eastern University Tamaraws last weekend.
Teng, who led UST to back-to-back finals appearances in the UAAP, said communication will be vital for the Tigers this season if they want to make it back to the championship round. And he was happy to see them doing just that in their 69-67 win against the Tamaraws.
"This is a veteran team," said Teng. "Maraming veterans like sila (Aljon) Mariano, sila (Kevin) Ferrer, (Karim) Abdul. So talagang they have to communicate lang talaga."
"Kasi mahirap kapag hindi kayo nagu-usap eh. Nakita ko 'yung first game, ganoon sila," he said, referring to UST's poor opening day game against National University, which they lost 40-59.
"This game, nakita ko nag-uusap sila. That's why they won this game," said Teng.
Teng did not watch UST's first game of the season in person, but admitted that the Tigers did not play well at all against the Bulldogs.
"'Yung players, they worked hard in this game at saka talagang nag-adjust sila, kasi in the first game, ang sama eh," he observed.
Teng said he is optimistic that the third time will be the charm for the Growling Tigers this season, especially since many of the players in the line-up have learned from the mistakes they made the first two times in the finals.
"Sobrang daming veterans diyan na natuto na from last year," he said. "So I think they are more experienced right now, and they still have a chance for the championship."
"Sana, La Salle at UST ulit (sa Finals)," he added with a smile.