ARNOLD Van Opstal has vowed no let-up in La Salle’s bid to win the Filoil Flying V Hanes Premier Cup title despite a tiring schedule leading to the Green Archers’ titular match against San Beda on Sunday.
The big guy admitted the team is already ‘exhausted’ owing to a schedule which saw La Salle play in the Cebu leg of the tournament during the latter part of May and head straight to the playoffs starting on Wednesday with its quarterfinal match against Far Eastern University.
On Friday, the defending UAAP champions won their semifinal match against Southwestern University, 72-64, to arrange a Finals meeting with the reigning NCAA title holders.
“We are pretty exhausted from the schedule,” Van Opstal said. “In Cebu, we had back-to-back games and here again, we have been playing the whole week. We had four games in a week.”
But Van Opstal offers no excuses as the Archers want to end their preseason campaign on a high note before plunging into Season 77 of the collegiate league.
The Archers play the Tamaraws in the UAAP opener on July 12 at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
“This is our last game and we just want to finish strong and win the championship,” Van Opstal said.
The La Salle center warmed up for the Finals showdown against San Beda’s Nigerian center Ola Adeogun after holding his own against SWU’s Cameroonian big man Landry Sanjo during the semis.
The former La Salle-Zobel big man scored 11 points while rotating on defense against Sanjo, who was limited to only four points.
“I should have been a lot more aggressive in the first half,” said Van Opstal of his match-up with Sanjo. “In the second half, I was satisfied with how I guarded Sanjo. I thought I played him a little soft in the first half.”