FAR Eastern University coach Nash Racela admitted he didn’t know what to expect from star player Mike Tolomia during Game against defending champion La Salle after being released from hospital just the day before.
He soon got his answer.
Tolomia scored 22 points in the Tamaraws’ come-from-behind win over the Green Archers despite being confined in a hospital for three days due to tonsillitis and fever.
“Actually, we weren’t really sure about Mike kasi nasa ospital siya right after our game last Saturday,” Racela said. “Kahapon lang kami nagkita. I don’t know what to expect from him.
“Good thing he performed in the game.”
Tolomia said he is still feeling the effects of his sickness, but was feeling much better on Wednesday. He even tried to make it to practice on the eve of the game against La Salle.
“’Medyo namamaga pa ‘yung tonsil ko. Pero ‘yung fever ko, okay na,” said the brother of former PBA player Mike Tolomia.
“Hinabol niya talaga,” said Racela of Tolomia’s effort to join the team's practice. “It was more of mental naman kay Mike and understanding the game plan.”
Tolomia capped his evening by scoring the game-clinching basket on a follow-up - after being left wide open from the foul line when he missed the second of two free throws - with five seconds left in the game.
“Yung instinct ni Mike,” said Racela about the winning play. “Of course, ‘yung instruction namin is to make sure to match up. Actually, it was a gamble on our part but you have to trust your instinct.”
With the Tamaraws now on top of the standings with an 8-2 win-loss slate, Tolomia has vowed no let up especially with Racela leaving for Spain as he joins Gilas Pilipinas in the Fiba-World Cup.
“Kung tutuloy namin ‘yung sistema na iniwan niya sa amin, magiging okay kami sa next two games,” said Tolomia.