THERE is little doubt about Emilio Aguinaldo College’s ability to compete this season, given its veteran core and some solid recruits.
But if the Generals want to turn that playoff dream into reality, they’re gonna have to figure out ways of playing when star center Hamadou Laminou fails to get his numbers.
The Letran Knights put the clamps on the star Cameroonian big man to defeat the Generals, 83-80, on Tuesday in the NCAA Season 93 at the Filoil Flying V Center.
After scoring 21 points in their first game against the College of St. Benilde, Laminou was limited to just seven points on 1-7 shooting in the face of Letran’s stingy defense in the paint.
Jeo Ambohot and Chris Pamulaklakin took turns in making life miserable for the third year slotman and it eventually wore the Generals down as they lost a 16-point first quarter lead en route to their first defeat of the season.
For EAC head coach Ariel Sison, this is an issue that they need to address as the season goes on.
“Titingnan namin ngayon kung paano makakapagrely sa shooter. Ang problema namin talaga, we rely more on low posts for Laminou. Kanina, nagadjust kami dun kaya lang wala talaga, halos late na lang talagang pumutok mga outside shooting namin e,” said Sison as he saw his squad make just six of their 24 attempts from downtown.
“Kung maaga pa lang, yung mga kick-out ni Laminou sa post nakakashoot na kami, wala sana kaming problema, pero isa yun sa aayusin namin. Kailangan hindi kami masyadong mag-rely kay Laminou,” he added.
Sison also pointed out that they ‘stopped’ playing basketball after a huge first quarter where they took a 28-12 lead after the first 10 minutes.
The former college dean turned head coach rued his squad’s lack of focus everytime they zoom to an early lead, an issue that they have been trying to address since the preseason.
“Pinaguusapan namin kung ano yung nangyari e. Nag-collapse na naman e. Yan palagi ang nangyayari pag lumalamang kami ng malaki, nakakalimutan namin na tuloy parin ang basketball dapat e,” he continued.
“Ganun pa man, sana sa 16 games na natitira, ma-address namin yan. Sabi ko nga, yung nangyari sa amin sa UP (nung preseason) lamang kami, natalo parin kami ng two points.”