MANILA, Philippines -- Far Eastern University (FEU) is already in a must-win situation against University of the East UE) on Wednesday, an assistant coach said after they dropped their first game of UAAP Season 85.
The Tamaraws absorbed a 79-70 loss to Ateneo de Manila University last Sunday at the Mall of Asia Arena, putting them on the back foot early in the tournament. Assistant coach Eric Gonzales said afterward that this makes their match-up against the Red Warriors a "must win."
"Hindi ka puwede maging complacent," Gonzales said of their showdown against UE.
The Red Warriors are also coming off a loss, having dropped their opener against National University, 77-70. It was UE's 15th straight loss since Season 84, but Gonzales pointed out that the Red Warriors put up a fight against the Bulldogs before fading down the stretch.
"Nakikita namin kanina habang inii-scout. May materyales sila. Very deceiving. Akala mo small, biglang magbi-big lineup," said the coach. "Hindi pa talagang nagje-jell pero mayroon [potential]. Hindi siya birong team."
The Tams hope to get another big game from LJay Gonzales, who had 19 points against Ateneo. Patrick Sleat is also looking to build on a 17-point performance, wherein he took charge in the fourth quarter to spark FEU's comeback attempt.
Tip-off is at 11 a.m. at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig City.
At 1 p.m., defending champion University of the Philippines looks to go 2-0 when they take on Adamson University (0-1).
University of Santo Tomas (UST) will try to pull off another shocker when they play De La Salle University (0-1) at 4:30 p.m.
The Growling Tigers stunned the Soaring Falcons, 69-60, in their first game of the season behind a 33-point explosion from new star Nic Cabanero.
La Salle, for its part, squandered a double-digit lead in another slim loss to the Fighting Maroons.
Capping the first quadruple-header of the season will be a showdown between the Ateneo Blue Eagles and the National University (NU) Bulldogs at 6:30 p.m. Both teams won their first games of the season.
"I think (NU coach) Jeff (Napa) is the toughest of all of us, and his team is a reflection of him," Ateneo coach Tab Baldwin said of their game. "It's breastplates and hardware helmets, hardhat helmets, and get ready to go on Wednesday."
"NU is a physical, tough team, and they do exactly what Jeff wants. He's a disciplinarian, and they're not gonna be easy for anybody this season, and I expect that we're gonna get a real taste of that on Wednesday," he added.
Women's basketball games will take place at the UST Quadricentennial Pavilion starting at 9 a.m. between La Salle and UST, followed by Ateneo vs. NU at 11 a.m., UE vs. FEU at 1 p.m., and Adamson vs. UP at 3 p.m.
UAAP Season 85 is streaming on iWantTFC every Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday, available for Premium users outside the Philippines.