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Chooks/SMART POTW Alvin Pasaol’s hard work draws praise from UE coach

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Philippine Sports News - Tiebreaker Times Chooks/SMART POTW Alvin Pasaol's hard work draws praise from UE coach Basketball News UAAP UE  UE Men's Basketball UAAP Season 80 Men's Basketball UAAP Season 80 UAAP Player of the Week Santi Santillan Matt Nieto Chooks-to-Go Alvin Pasaol

Alvin Pasaol has emerged as the heart and soul of the University of the East Red Warriors.

With Pasaol’s all-out approach to the game, the Red Warriors are slowly peaking in their quest to reach the Final Four this UAAP Season 80 men’s basketball tournament.

Limping with cramps down the stretch, Pasaol never gave up and continued to play his heart out, as he hit clutch baskets and finished with 32 points to carry the Red Warriors past the University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons, 73-64, on Sunday. His feat has earned this week’s UAAP Press Corps-Chooks To Go Player of the Week award.

This is his second time to earn the plum after he made a historic 49-point performance despite a sorry 100-106 loss to defending champions De La Salle University Green Archers. He then delivered 32 markers in UE’s first win of the season — a 96-91 conquest over the University of Santo Tomas Growling Tigers two weeks ago.

The sophomore sensation was the main man in UE’s surge, as the Red Warriors have won three of their last four games for an improved 3-7 win-loss record — just a game behind joint-fifth placers University of the Philippines and National University, who have identical 4-6 slates.

But the number two scorer in the league — who is averaging 22.2 points per game including 7.1 rebounds, 1.3 assists and as many as steals — gave full credit the system of head coach Derrick Pumaren and the effort of his teammates.

“Siguro nag-stick lang kami sa game plan namin para manalo kami ngayon. Maganda rin pinakita ng mga teammates ko, the way sila mag-depensa,” said the 6-foot-3 forward, who stood out among candidates Santi Santillan of De La Salle and Matt Nieto of Ateneo for the weekly plum, given by the league’s beat writers from broadsheets, tabloids, and online publications.

For Pumaren, Pasaol is a very special player compared to several cagers he handled in his seasoned coaching career.

“Alvin, his game, has been ready. If he wants to score he can score. Very deceiving,” the UE tactician said. “Medyo yung katawan. Akala natin hindi kaya ng katawan pero you’ll be surprised. He is willing to sacrifice his body. Alvin is a very special player so far na na-hahandle ko.”

Pasaol and the Red Warriors are bracing for a tough match-up against De La Salle this Wednesday at the Mall of Asia Arena.

And the rising star vowed one thing.

“Kailangan siguro mas dikdikan pa ulit. kasi La Salle eh. Kailangan talaga lumaban.”

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