Franz Pumaren glad gamble on Dawn Ochea paid off: '(He) made me a coaching genius'
Coach Franz Pumaren steers the Falcons to the upper half of the standings early in the season. Jerome Ascano

ADAMSON head coach Franz Pumaren made a gamble in the dying seconds of their game against Ateneo, fielding in Dawn Ochea with 4.1 ticks to go and the game on the line. 

But Ochea didn't disappoint as he hit the turnaround jumper against Manuel Tolentino off an inbound pass by Jonathan Espeleta with 1.9 left that sent the crowd into a frenzy. The man himself had no doubts soon as the ball left his hands.

"I've been doing that shot every practice so I was very confident with that shot," said Ochea.

Thirdy Ravena botched a jumper in the ensuing play as Adamson went on to fashion out a thrilling 62-61 victory at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum on Saturday.

It was Ochea's lone field goal in the contest, and Pumaren was pleased that his gamble paid off. The Falcons improved to 2-1 after the thrilling victory that saw them climb back from 10 points down midway through the fourth period. 

"Ochea made me a coaching genius. He nailed that magical shot," said Pumaren moments after the game. 

But the head tactician also lauded the rest of the team, which refused to fold in the face of Ateneo's relentless attack. 

"This is what I miss about college basketball," said Pumaren, who has multiple UAAP championships under his belt with La Salle. 

"I should really appreciate the players right now. They could have easily folded up but they showed their true character," he added.

Follow the writer on Twitter: @janbballesteros