KIEFER Ravena said on Saturday fatigue played a role in his miserable shooting on Saturday that cut short Ateneo’s hot start in Season 77 of the UAAP men’s basketball tournament.
After nearly breaking the 30-point barrier in last week’s huge win over archrival De La Salle, Ravena finished with just 13 points this time and shot only 3-of-20 from the field as the Blue Eagles bowed to the National University Bulldogs 64-60, for their first defeat of the season after starting the tournament with a 3-0 slate.
Ravena said playing three straight game days keyed his shooting slump, having played La Salle on Sunday and then University of the Philippines on Wednesday.
But Ravena said fatigue is not an excuse to the loss to NU.
“Fatigue came to play, playing back-to-back-to-back. Pagod din. Pero it’s not an excuse. Other teams have to also go through that,” said Ravena.
The Ateneo star also gave credit to NU’s known straight-up defense on him.
“There was nothing special about it. They did a good job. Wala naman akong naramdaman na double. NU is a strong team individually on defense. I’ve been under coach Eric. Hindi naman siya masyado ma-defensive schemes na double team kasi trust niya ‘yung mga players na kaya nilang dumepensa one-on-one,” Ravena said.
The Ateneo guard said it was also a learning experience for him in dishing off to his teammates more as he aims to bounce back in their next outing against Far Eastern University on August 3 after an eight-day break.
“A lot of factors came into play but it’s not an excused. I’m definitely a better player than that. It was a matter of me missing my shots. Siguro I have to adjust for that. I felt like if I don’t make my shots, I have to feed off my teammates,” he said.
Ravena said the defeat will also be helpful to the squad after a strong start.
“Better to experience it now than something in the future,” said Ravena.