HE had only one point in a sloppy low-scoring match, but Prinze Orizu worked hard in other areas of the game to help Far Eastern University get a win streak going.
Two crucial defensive stops by Orizu helped the Tamaraws turn back the University of the Philippines Maroons, their second straight victory and third in five outings in the UAAP Season 79.
The game was tied at 47 when UP got a chance for a fastbreak play following a missed dunk by Raymar Jose. But Orizu pulled off a big defensive play for the Tamaraws with a chasedown block over Jarrell Lim.
After Monbert Arong hit one of two free throws on the next play with 55.3 seconds left, Orizu came up with another defensive gem with a block on a Paul Desiderio attempt, leading to an Arong jumper to give FEU a 50-47 lead.
“I really don’t want to lose the game. I’m not going to back down on defense. Even though we were terrible on offense, I want to get back on defense. I didn’t want to lose the game,” said Orizu.
FEU coach Nash Racela praised Orizu’s efforts.
“That is something that we talked about, not giving up on every play. Actually natakot ako na may nag-leak out, sabi ko ‘Patay.’ It’s nice that Prince never gave up on the play. Talagang hinabol niya.”
“Even after the block, there were three more players in the paint,” Racela said. “That is something that we preach. Resiliency,” he added.
Orizu added the Tamaraws simply had to play better defense to make up for the dismal offense — they struggled all game and shot a disappointing 31 percent from the field.
“We really didn’t have a good offense today like everybody was off including me. But our main goal was to get stops on defense like really go hard on defense because coach Nash really wanted us to go hard on defense,” said Orizu.