Dagger trey against Ateneo gives La Salle rookie Torralba a shot of confidence
La Salle freshman Joshua Torralba squares up for the three-pointer that proved the game winner against Ateneo on Sunday afternoon. Jerome Ascano

JOSHUA Torralba’s heroics against Ateneo on Sunday doesn’t only augur well for him personally but also for La Salle in general as the team tries to carry the momentum of the big win into the second round of UAAP Season 78.

Torralba hit a clutch trey in the final 33.9 seconds to lift the Green Archers to a come-from-behind 80-76 victory over their arch-rivals in front of more than 17,000 fans at the Mall of Asia Arena.

La Salle had been on a roller-coaster ride so far, but managed to end the first round in a big way following the big comeback from a 16-point deficit.

The 21-year-old Torralba, who averages 7.5 points and shooting a team-best 32 percent from three-point range, said hitting the game-winner was a big boost in confidence.

“It’s a big confidence booster. Someone was saying that it’s a good pringboard for us in the next round. We needed that,” said the rookie player.

[See Torralba, Teng are clutch as La Salle comeback stuns Ateneo]

La Salle coach Juno Sauler was no longer surprised with Torralba’s three-point shooting abilities.

“He’s been working on the threes in practice so it paid dividends today (Sunday),” he said.

Despite coming through with the dagger three-pointer, Torralba admitted he was anxious going into his debut under the bright lights of the La Salle-Ateneo rivalry.

“It was a big shot. I was a little frustrated in the game. I was trying to keep my composure and my confidence up,” he said.

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