FILLING the void left by two-way guard Ron Dennison is one of the biggest issues that coach Olsen Racela has needed to address this season.
And coming off an embarrassing defeat to the erstwhile winless University of the East, Racela might have already found the answer to that problem.
Wendell Comboy stepped up on both ends of the floor as Far Eastern University scored a huge bounce-back victory with a 73-68 win over National University on Wednesday at the Mall of Asia Arena.
The fourth-year guard finished with a game-high 18 points but more than his baskets, it was his defense on the Bulldogs’ rising star Dave ildefonso which proved to be critical.
“Siya magsasabi sa akin na more than the shots, ano 'yun. 'Yung depensa niya. He approached me during practice, so he took on the responsibility of being our main defender,” said Racela.
“Of course, 11 points pa rin si Dave, pero I think gusto ko 'yung the way he started, and the way he defended against the guards, not just Dave but the guards of NU,” he added.
If Comboy continues to work on his craft, Racela believes that the homegrown FEU combo guard could very much turn into the next big thing for the Tamaraws.
“Isa siya sa mga players na inaasahan namin to fill the void, that role. KT (Kenneth Tuffin) is one also. Ang kailangan lang i-improve ni Wendel is his shot selection, sinasabi ko naman sa kanya yun,” said Racela.
“He has to improve on his shot selection and be consistent on his defense, yun ang kailangan niya.”
Comboy looks like he’s up to the task and bared that he’s been working on consistency on the defensive end even before the season started.
“Actually preseason pa 'yun, 'yun ang laging sinasabi ni coach. So ayun, pinaghahandaan ko lang hanggang nagbunga namin, nagbunga namin ngayong game,” said Comboy.
And what a time for Comboy to actually flourish after a letdown of a performance against the Red Warriors.
After making up for his bad performance, Comboy then took the time to apologize.
“On behalf of our team, sa FEU community. Hindi kami yung naglaro noong UE. Wala kami sa... alam mo 'yun, wala sa hulog, so humihingi kami ng pasensya. So yun, ibibigay namin ang best namin, di kami gi-give up every play, yun ang maasahan niyo sa amin.”