ARELLANO University may be Kent Salado’s team now but he's the first to admit that they wouldn’t go places if he’s to do it alone.
That much was obvious in the Chiefs’ 65-99 loss to the Lyceum Pirates on Tuesday in the NCAA Season 93 seniors basketball tournament – where Salado struggled along with the rest of the team.
The third year guard out of Cagayan de Oro finished with just 11 points on 5-of-15 shooting and without him supplying the necessary spark on offense, the Chiefs absolutely had no chance.
That’s why Salado was asking – almost pleading – for help from his teammates if they want to have a chance at repeating their Finals appearance from last year.
“Siguro kailangan lang talaga mag-step up nung mga kasama ko. Pinapasa ko naman e, yun nga di lang nafifinish. Hindi ko naman kaya mag-isa yun,” said Salado, who added seven boards, four assists against four turnovers in the game.
Salado singled out big man Lervin Flores who was expected to be his main support after a stellar rookie season last year but has struggled heavily after four games.
In the loss to Lyceum, Flores scored just three points and five rebounds in 24 minutes of action.
“Kulang lang talaga sa teammates ko. Yung Flores, parang inconsistent pa. Ayun lang masasabi ko. Hindi ko naman kaya magisa e, papasa ko naman sa kanila e.”
The Chiefs star, however, was quick to laud the Pirates defense, particularly the Marcelino twins JC and JV who made life an absolute hell for him in this game.
“Ano sila e, parang tandem na tandem e. Kung san ako pupunta, andun sila. Sinasabay sila e, pag pasok nung isa, parang palitan,” said Salado.
“Hindi ko nga alam kung sino bumabantay sakin sa kanilang dalawa. Magaling yung dalawa, magaling dumepensa.”
He also admitted that they looked past the pesky Pirates backcourt, saying that they’ve focused on stopping CJ Perez too much, to the point that they neglected what the twins bring to the table.
They paid a whole lot for it.
“Nagulat nga kami. Sa first quarter palang, yung Perez na-stop namin. Two points lang siya. Pero yung pumatay samin dun yung mga Marcelino lang e,” Salado continued.
“Wala sa scouting report namin yun kasi si Perez naman talaga yung ano diyan e, pero siguro maga-adjust na kami diyan.”