SOUTHWESTERN University sees a silver lining despite its awful campaign in the Big City league.
Assistant coach Mike Reyes believes that while the Cobras are finding their Filoil Flying V Preseason Cup bid a rather miserable one, it also gives them invaluable experience they can build on for their title defense in the upcoming Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation, Inc. (Cesafi) season.
The Cebu-based Cobras, the first collegiate team outside Manila to be invited to the annual summer tournament, is off to a faltering start, losing their first three games, including a 98-61 beating at the hands of La Salle last Saturday.
But Reyes, brother of national basketball team coach Chot Reyes, is sticking to the positives ahead of the Cobras’ coming Cesafi season in the next few months.
“It’s very important for our Cesafi campaign because, at least we’re learning a few things from this experience like our weaknesses on defense and boxing out,” said Reyes, who handled the squad in lieu of head coach Yayoy Alcoseba, who is busy campaigning as Board Member in the Queen City of the South.
“Now they are starting to understand that,” added Reyes, the former University of San Carlos mentor, who once had a coaching stint in Manila for the midgets squad of Aquinas School in San Juan.
Despite a handful of Cameroonian giants in its fold, SWU was outrebounded by the Archers by 22.
After ruling last year's Cesafi tournament by edging out University of Visayas in the deciding game of the best-of-five title series, the Cobras have tasted little success in their offseason campaign in Manila.
Although they reached the semifinals of the Philippine Collegiate Champions League, the Cobras have so far had an unpromising Filoil stint.
“Ang layo ng difference sa strength eh. With what is happening here, maybe our players will realize for us to compete is they have to be serious sa weights nila,” Reyes said.
“Sa Cebu nananalo kami without that, but we cannot compete nationally without weights, proper strength training. Pag binangga kami, mahuhulog kami. Kahit kami bumangga sa kanila, kami pa rin ang mahuhulog.”
The Cobras try to barge into the win column on Monday when they face a rebuilding San Sebastian College squad.