DE La Salle coach Juno Sauler joked about the team’s error-filled performance in a 60-58 win over University of the East, but made it clear the Green Archers' inability to break the Red Warriors press is no laughing matter.
Sauler rued the absence of injured point guard Thomas Torres from the match against the Red Warriors and the trademark trapping defense of veteran coach Derrick Pumaren.
“Maybe if Thomas played, probably instead of 36 (turnovers), baka 35 lang,” said Sauler in jest.
But kidding aside, Sauler said the absence of Torres forced the Archers to adjust their rotation with Kib Montalbo starting at the point and Almond Vosotros, a two-guard, often taking over the playmaking chores.
The Green Archers, who had the lowest turnovers average in the league prior to the game, ended up committing 36 turnovers.
“We are having a problem, not only Almond but Kib at the point. When Kib’s out, Almond has to play the point. Sometimes, Jeron (Teng) and Robert (Bolick) also,” said Sauler.
The La Salle coach said the Green Archers made all the preparations against UE's game-long full-court press, but practice doesn't always make perfect.
“We knew that they will press. That’s what we tried to focus on," he said. "Siyempre, it’s different from practice because it’s not the way UE plays it. We knew they will do it for 40 minutes but apparently, we didn’t do a good job on the press break.”