It seems that more NCAA teams could diffuse the JRU Heavy Bombers in plain sight.
Tipped to be a Final Four contender with an intact core of veterans, the Heavy Bombers fell into a trap anew, this time at the hands of fighting Lyceum Pirates, 66-69, dropping their 3rd game in 4 meetings.
With JRU up by 11 points in the 3rd, head coach Vergel Meneses believes it’s more of his squad self-destructing on defense.
“Di nag-adjust, sabi ko sa kanila mag-adjust. Defensive lapses, we’re late on rotating sa import nila so layup after layup,” said Meneses.
True enough, Pirates big man Mike Nzeusseu feasted on the Bombers’ lack of defensive intensity with 24 points and 21 rebounds to pull off the gigantic upset.
Meneses and the Bombers spent a good one hour in the dugout after the deflating loss with the frustrated head coach trying to wake up his players.
“Baka matauhan, parang relax eh, wala yung fire nila,” said the former PBA player.
Meneses added he missed JRU’s old identity while blasting the team’s over reliance on their offensive prowess.
“Since nahawakan ko yung JRU, we are known for defense. Now parang, they think siguro they’re winning because of talent nila, yung offense kaso hindi,” he said.
Asked by FOX Sports if their lack of preseason appearance is hounding their start in the season, Meneses begs to disagree.
“I dont think so. Gumagawa naman kami ng gameplan para makita yung ginagawa ng kalaban, tapos yun ipra-practice mo sa kanila,” he said. “Gaya ng sinabi ko, well-prepared kami, ang naging problema lang we stop attacking dun sa zone nila.” – By Jason Mercene
Follow this writer on Twitter: @JasonMercenePH