BEFORE entering the dugout for the usual halftime talk, Kevin Ferrer led University of Santo Tomas teammates in a huddle with the Growling Tigers holding on to a five-point lead over Far Eastern University Tamaraws at the break.
Doing so only proved one thing - Ferrer truly wants to be the leader of this team.
“Sinabi ko hindi pa tapos ang laro,” he said when asked to recall what he told the Tigers at the half. “Tuloy natin ‘yung intensity at pinapakita natin, dagdagan pa. Huwag din mag-relax.”
“Second half ‘yung importante diyan sa laban eh,” he added.
With Ferrer leading from the front, the Tigers kept their lead and composure to overcome the Tamaraws, 69-67, on Sunday and clinch their first win in Season 77 of the UAAP men’s basketball tournament.
UST stalwart Kent Lao said Ferrer leading the team in the huddle was huge to their confidence as they entered the second half protecting a 31-26 lead.
“Malaking bagay ‘yun. Communication, dapat lagi kaming nag-uusap. Alam namin ‘yung gagawin namin, composed kami,” said Lao, who also had a game to remember for the Tigers by scoring 14 points.
Ferrer said he is eager to bounce back in the game against FEU especially after hearing criticisms regarding his play.
The former national team player didn’t mention who criticized him, but it nevertheless sparked the fire in his belly to improve following his lackluster four-point performance against NU in the Tigers’ opening game of the season.
“Kailangan kong bumawi. Pinakita ko rin naman sa training na kailangan kong i-lift ‘yung team, kailangan kong dalhin. Promise ko rin ‘yun sa sarili ko kasi may mga naririnig ako na nagsasabi na parang kailangan kong i-improve ‘yung ganito. Thank you sa nagsabi noon,” said Ferrer.