Gamboa-St. Clare looks to prove mettle vs another top college team in Akari-Adamson
Athletic guards Trevis Jackson and Jerrick Ahanmisi face off when Gamboa-St. Clare and Akari-Adamson collide. Dante Peralta

ALL Gamboa Coffee Mix-St. Clare coach Jinino Manansala wants is for his team to earn the respect of other college squads in the ongoing PBA D-League Aspirants' Cup.

And the only way to get that is to at least make things rough for their foes.

Fortunately, the Coffee Lovers are starting to gain ground after beating NCAA team Jose Rizal University, 93-76 last Monday.

And the team backstopped by the core of St. Clare will have a chance to slay another giant in Akari-Adamson on Thursday.

The two teams clash at 2 p.m. at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig, before the 4 p.m. tussle between Che'Lu Bar and Grill-San Sebastrian (2-2) and the Heavy Bombers (1-2).

"Gusto lang naming magbigay ng statement as Gamboa, gusto naming makuha yung respeto ng ibang teams sa other leagues," said Manansala in the aftermath of the win over JRU.

Gamboa holds a 2-1 card, while Akari-Adamson has won back-to-back games to improve to 3-1.

But Akari-Adamson coach Franz Pumaren reiterates they are out only to finetune the Falcons' skills for future competitions.

"Basically what we’re doing is we want the players to react. We’re trying to improve the overall individual skills of our players, at the same time, review them our concepts and rules," Pumaren said.

"We just want the players to adjust to the situation because down the road, I believe that could help us." 

Follow the writer on Twitter: @janbballesteros