MANILA — The Adamson Soaring Falcons and the Ateneo Blue Eagles will face off for the final time in UAAP Season 86 on Wednesday.
To reach the decider for the last Final Four slot, the Soaring Falcons did their part and avoided elimination by defeating the NU Bulldogs and the UE Red Warriors.
On the other hand, following their crucial win against Adamson, Ateneo failed to automatically enter the semifinals after they endured defeat against their rival, the De La Salle Green Archers, last Saturday.
Both schools, who split their elimination round meetings and ended with identical 7-7 records, have been the talk of the town in the previous weeks because of their head coaches’ comments, mainly on the UAAP’s officiating.
For Adamson mentor Nash Racela, however, what’s important for the San Marcelino-based squad right now is to move on from those and maintain their emotions amidst their on-and-off-the-court affair with the Tab Baldwin-mentored Blue Eagles.
“To be honest, we’re very specific with emotions,” Racela said following their win against UE last Sunday.
“I always tell the team to balance their emotions. Not too high, not too low. But siyempre, when you play an elimination game, mataas ang emotions, so we’ll talk about that.”
More importantly, what the one-time UAAP champion coach wants from his squad is to do what they did twice in the past week — just do their part yet again.
“We always preach doing our part,” said Racela. “As coaches, it will start with us, sa preparations namin.”
“Coaches will do their part, the players will have to do their part absorbing and really understanding yung game plans.”
“That will really give ourselves a really good chance on Wednesday.”