PERPETUAL Help coach Nosa Omorogbe admitted his team is far from ready for the coming NCAA season but was pleased to see the Altas show signs of improvement with a strong finish in the Filoil Flying V Preseason Premier Cup.
The Altas have struggled to adjust to life after Bright Akhuetie, as the former Perpetual star decided to join the University of the Philippines in the UAAP.
Omorogbe admitted Akhuetie’s departure was a huge blow to the team but urged his wards to move forward and use this change as an opportunity to prove themselves in NCAA Season 93.
"We just have to move forward," said Omorogbe, following the end of the Altas' Filoil preseason campaign. "That is why our eyes are right in front of us. We can't keep on dwelling on the past."
"Bright left, and that was a big blow. But for me, as a coach, that's a big motivation for me and motivate my other guys to play," he added.
The Altas finished the Filoil preseason with a 3-5 slate but had a morale-boosting victory over last year's UAAP finalist Ateneo to end their stint on a high note.
Against the Blue Eagles, Prince Eze, who is now tasked as the main big guy for the Las Pinas-based squad, contributed 18 points, eight rebounds, one steal, and two blocks in Perpetual Help's 60-59 win.
Omorogbe described the early part of the Filoil preseason as a learning process especially following injuries to top star Gab Dagangon and Jack Hao. But the strong finish was a good sign moving forward for the young squad.
"For me, if the Filoil started today, we could have been in the quarterfinals. We started like a total mess. With the way I coach and the way they respond, we coach based on each other every game we play. We just learn. It's a learning process. We are just going back, watch the tape, and see how we can improve," said Omorogbe.
The young Perpetual Help coach said Dagangon and Hao will be back from injuries in time for the NCAA season opener. For now, the learning continues for the rest of the Altas.
"I don't think (we are ready for the NCAA season). We have a lot to work on. Our two main guys will come back and we have to adjust. In three weeks’ time, I think so (we will be ready)," said Omorogbe.