JERIC TENG remains day-to-day due to an injured hamstring, just one of the many injuries that last season’s UAAP runner-up University of Santo Tomas have to endure this season.
UST coach Pido Jarencio said he still doesn’t have an idea on when Teng can return after he hurt his hamstring against National University last Saturday in his first game back after missing four games due to a shoulder injury.
“Hindi ko na masasagot ‘yan dahil day-to-day ang basis,” Jarencio told Spin.ph. “Hamstring ‘yun, matagal ‘yun. May pumitik ata.”
Jarencio bared Teng's is not his only injury concern in what has come to be known as the 'Wounded Tigers' this season.
The UST coach said he has already lost second-stringers Edcor Marata and Jan Macasaet for the season due to ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) injuries. Brian So has also suffered an LCL (lateral collateral ligament) injury with a possibility of an ACL injury, Jarencio added.
Key players Kevin Ferrer and Aljon Mariano also had to deal with injuries this season. Ferrer had a cheek bone injury that required him to wear a mask during the first round of the eliminations while Mariano sat out the team's first few games due to an ankle injury he aggravated in a game against University of the East.
That doesn’t include minor shoulder injuries that Kim Lo and Karim Abdul suffered on separate occasions during Wednesday’s game against Adamson. Lo and Abdul both soldiered on, helping UST finally snap a three-game losing skid with an 80-67 win over Adamson.
In fact, only nine players saw action for the Tigers last Wednesday with six of them playing at least 21 minutes.
“Ewan ko, biglang bumagsak kami. Puro injuries,” Jarencio said. “Sabi ko nga sa kanila, ang sasarap nang mga kinakain ninyo pero ang hihina ng mga katawan niyo.”
Jarencio even appears resigned to the fact that he needs the help of other teams if the Tigers are to reach the Final Four. They are in currently sixth place with a 5-5 win-loss slate chasing third-placers Ateneo (6-4) and La Salle (6-4), and University of the East (5-4).
“Manalo lang kami tapos manalangin na may matalo dun sa dalawa — Ateneo and UE," he said. "This year, disappointing year talaga. Sana mag-iba ang ihip nang hangin.”