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    Prince Ibeh makes up for free throw woes with superior defense for NorthPort

    Jul 4, 2019
    PHOTO: jerome ascaño

    PRINCE Ibeh said he has been working tirelessly to improve on his free-throw shooting, even though he has been making an impact on the defensive side for NorthPort.

    The 24-year-old Ibeh entered Wednesday’s game against Columbian just shooting 17 percent from the line or a combined 11 of 66 from the foul line. The NorthPort import did well in the Batang Pier’s 110-108 win over Columbian, hitting five of his first seven free throws although he missed the next four.

    “Working on it every day,” Ibeh told SPIN.ph after Wednesday’s game. “Just getting comfortable doing the same thing everytime. I just continue to keep shooting and it’s going to fall when it matters.”

    Despite his struggles at the free throw line, Ibeh has been making an impact for NorthPort on the defensive side. Even though he is the lowest scoring import in the conference with an average of 13.6, Ibeh leads the league in blocks with 3.5, while averaging 15.9 rebounds through 10 games with the Batang Pier.

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    NorthPort coach Pido Jarencio said Ibeh is definitely the right fit for the Batang Pier.

    “Kahit papaano, intimidating sa loob,” said Jarencio. “Haba ng kamay tapos he’s getting the rebounds. Kapag binigyan mo ng drop pass, nakakakuha ng finish… ‘Yun ang importante.” “‘Yung rebounding, number one. Number two, ‘yung presence inside, intimidation against the opponents. Number three, ‘yung nakakafinish siya kahit papaano kapag nabigyan sa ilalim,” said Jarencio.

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      Ibeh said he had been hearing a lot from observers that he might not be the perfect import for NorthPort.

      “The first time I got here, a lot of people questioned if I can play here. I told you, defense wins games and I’m going to show it. I feel like I’ve done that and change the perception regarding me,” Ibeh said.

      Ibeh also gave a lot of credit to his teammates for accepting him to the team.

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      “My teammates have done a good job of playing with me and playing through my strengths and stuff,” said Ibeh.

      Although not known for his scoring, Ibeh said he will definitely contribute offensively when needed to.

      “I’ll score when the moments are there and when the opportunity is there but my main focus is always defense. People think that you just have to score a hundred points to win but you also have to hold your opponent,” Ibeh said.

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      PHOTO: jerome ascaño
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