Knowing Sunday’s match against Adamson University may be the Ateneo de Manila University’s last game in the UAAP Season 78 women’s basketball tournament, Lady Eagles head coach Erika Dy gave an extra challenge to one of the team’s departing players, Claire Aseron.
“Claire has been struggling throughout the season but she was really one of our leaders and go-to guys on the floor last year, especially on the offensive end,” Dy shared.
“I talked to her and told her it could be her last game in the eliminations. I told her to be a kid again, be excited about playing again and don’t think of things that will pressure you and maglaro ka lang.”
Aseron was an integral part of Ateneo’s season last year, although she was visibly struggling in the Lady Eagles’ roller-coaster ride this season. The fifth year wing player averaged only 3 PPG in the Lady Eagles’ last two matches, but in a must-win game against the Lady Falcons, Aseron finally delivered and provided some spark for Ateneo’s offense.
Aseron topscored with 11 points on 4-for-6 field goal shooting in only 16 minutes, and added 5 rebounds and 2 assists to help Ateneo beat Adamson, 55-41. The team gained a playoff against UST on Wednesday for the last Final Four spot.
“I think she did that especially in the second half,” Dy said, lauding her player for responding to the challenge.
Dy was particularly happy with how the Lady Eagles were performing offensively, getting help from more players. “I’ve been happy the past three games. We’re showing better form especially in the offensive end.”
Given another chance to make the stepladder semi-finals, Dy said the Loyola side should work on their rebounding to boost their chances of winning.
“From this game we have to work on our rebounding. The past three or four games we were outrebounded despite our height advantage. It is something we need to work on in our practices.”
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