With Lyceum already out of contention for a Final Four berth in the 92nd NCAA seniors basketball tourney, Pirates coach Topex Robinson is looking far ahead.
Helping rookie Reymar Caduyac make steady improvement remains part of his plans.
Caduyac, 19, gave Robinson another big reason why he’ll be a vital cog for the Pirates in the future when he starred in Lyceum’s stunning 64-61 victory over Final Four hopeful Perpetual Help on Tuesday at The Arena in San Juan City.
Taking charge in the stretch, Caduyac rifled in nine of his team-high 15 points, assuming the role of a go-to-guy that Robinson has long been looking for.
“I told you I was preparing for next season, he’s pretty much part of what we’re looking ahead,” said Robinson of Caduyac who also added three rebounds and a steal in 21 minutes of play off the bench, helping Lyceum improve its record to 6-11..
Robinson also admitted the way Caduyac sparkled with a career-best 27 points in Lyceum’s 73-89 setback dealt by host San Beda last week gives him encouraging signs of a potential star in the making.
- “We try to give him as many games this close just to prepare him, just to sharpen him, more or less the experience will help him. The way he played against San Beda is a picture of what he could give us,” he said.
While he’s far from satisfied with his current form, Caduyac said he’s pleased that he’s able to repay the trust given to him by Robinson.
“Sobrang saya lang kasi binibigyan ako ng kumpiyansa ni coach. Sinasabi niya kung anong gusto niyang mangyari sa team kaya binibigay ko lang talaga lahat,” he said.
Despite another failed campaign, Robinson couldn’t help but look to a silver lining on the horizon.
“There were a lot of things beyond our control that happened but again we just have to keep on playing,” he said. “I guess every fault comes to me because I wasn’t good enough to prepare them for the second round. That’s part of it and that’s water under the bridge, We just have to keep moving forward.” – By Jerome Lagunzad
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