AFTER a nightmare campaign last year, University of the East head coach Derrick Pumaren is hopeful that things will be better come the UAAP Season 80.
The veteran mentor is hoping that a busy preseason will translate into a better performance this time around after winning just a grand total of three games last season.
"We just hope we can just better our showing this coming season and hopefully we’ll be able to erase yung disappointing year namin last season. We just have to compete and play with confidence this time, Pumaren said.
"Sumali kami ng Filoil, Milcu and TIP Invitational... hopefully, that will be a springboard for us coming this season and give confidence to our guys to perform better this year," he added.
With an intact core led by Alvin Pasaol, Pumaren may have reason to be hopeful.
Pasaol finds ample support from fellow veterans Phillip Manalang and Clark Derige, as the Red Warriors look to shock the league and make a run at a Final Four slot.
That may be easier said than done. But for a team that’s seen its number of wins trend down in the past seasons, any hope that they can cling to will be a welcome development.
"Of course, I’ll be lying if we’re not looking for Final Four,” said Pumaren
But if they fall short on a final four run, Pumaren would be content to just see his team perform with a sense of urgency, something that was missing in their squad from the early parts of last season.
"Guys that are supposed to deliver should deliver this time kasi last year yung expected guys to deliver eh wala," Pumaren continued.
"The realistic goal is to be better from last season. We just have to treat each game like it's our last game."