CALL it a "flu game" for Ben Mbala.
Although feeling a bit under the weather, Mbala still delivered the goods in La Salle's 93-77 win over Letran in the Filoil Flying V Preseason Premier Cup on Friday.
Not even the flu could stop Mbala from wreaking havoc on the Knights, erupting with 45 points and collaring 17 rebounds to go with three blocks in a sterling game that allowed the Archers (5-3) to book a quarterfinal slot in the preseason tournament.
His splendid performance came on the heels of a bitter 78-80 loss to archrival Ateneo, but Mbala insited he just wanted to play at a high level with a playoff berth on the line.
"I just wanted to win, thats it. If I had to score, I will score. I've been struggling the past few games, i felt that i havent been playing well," he said.
"Flu was not an excuse for me not to play well. I still have to go out there and compete."
For coach Aldin Ayo, La Salle will be as destructive when they share the ball like it did against Letran.
"Hinahanap namin yung best shot, and siyempre naman, yung best shot namin, best option, si Ben. Ben had the best opportunities kasi walang bigs na makaka-match up sa kanya sa Letran," said Ayo, whose team dished out 20 assists.
The Cameroonian slotman hopes the team plays the same way against Group B's top seed Far Eastern University.
"FEU is a great team, they have great players and coaching staff but it's a game of basketball. You just have to go out there and play as a team and have a good plan," he said.