VON Pessumal is a self-confessed Steph Curry fan. And so far, he has been Curry-like in terms of his shooting from three-point range.
With his deep range and an increase in playing time, Pessumal has shown that he's ready to take over some of the offensive load for the Ateneo Blue Eagles after years of waiting in the wings.
The 20-year-old Pessumal said it is no accident that he has been stepping up on offense — especially from the outside — early in the Filoil Flying V Hanes Premier Cup.
The exit of their star players like Greg Slaughter and Nico Salva has paved the way for Pessumal to be an impact player for the Blue Eagles in the preseason.
“We have a lot of players that graduated who were a main part of the offense,” Pessumal said. “I actually knew that somebody has to step up. It so happened that I’ve been stepping up.”
So far, Pessumal has been delivering the goods.
Pessumal scored 11 of his 16 points in the fourth quarter during their match against Emilio Aguinaldo College. Then, he tallied 19 markers and converted five three-pointers when Ateneo defeated University of the East.
“I think coach expects someone to step up and I want to be consistently relied upon,” said Pessumal.
Not even a bloody finger injury suffered in a win against Lyceum on April 26 can dampen Pessumal's resolve to be the Eagles' top gun this season, assuring everybody that he is all right just before he and the entire team left for the US for their regular preseason training camp.
“Thanks for all the concern everyone, but im good guys! ill be back,” Pessumal wrote on his Twitter account.
No one is happier for the junior player's splendid play and increased playing time than Ateneo star Kiefer Ravena, Pessumal's teammate since Grade Six.
Ravena said he has long known what Pessumal can bring to the table and therefore is no longer surprised by his fine form.
“Probably for me, it's no longer a surprise to see Von playing well," said Ravena. "Matagal na naming alam ni Juami (Tiongson) what he can do at makakatulong sya."
Ateneo coach Bo Perasol said that he has been using Pessumal as a second stringer and it has been working wonders.
“In fact, that’s the reason why he is coming off the bench. I’m confident right now that he can pick up the cudgels if we rest Kiefer or even (if we) play them together,” Perasol said.
Still, Pessumal credits his teammates, now that he is finally getting the breaks that he deserves.
“My teammates keep on finding me,” Pessumal said.