Jose Rizal University head coach Louie Gonzales lauded his players for picking up their first win in the NCAA Season 97 following a 63-60 victory over College of St. Benilde last Tuesday.
The veteran coach even praised his wards as they stuck and trusted the process even in the middle of the five-game slide – some of which were very close losses that could have given the team a much better position in the standings midway through the eliminations.
“’Yung pinaka malaking challenge talaga is alam mo naman ‘yung mga players nagcocompare yan doon sa ibang teams pero how are you gonna convince them na we’ll be fine basta’t sinusunod natin yung rules and regulation yung protocol this is really big for us lalo na nakita pala namin na kaya namin tumapos,” said Gonzales.
According to Gonzales, the attitude of the players never changed during that dry spell and they still showed the grit and passion in practices – something that the Heavy Bombers finally displayed against a rousing Blazers side who were then riding the waves of a four-game winning streak prior to that match.
“Sa totoo lang puro kami talo pero yung effort and commitment sa practice doesn’t change, talagang every game namin even on a hard loss talagang diretso kami sa weights room kasi ang target is the development,” Gonzales said.
“Ang tinitignan namin kung ang goal namin is winning, we need to develop ourselves. Again, it’s getting ready physically, emotionally and mentally,” he added.
JRU’s first win might have come a little late as they are now 1-5 for the last place in the standings and with only three games left in the elimination schedule. Gonzales though remained positive of their chances as they try to make the last ditch run to get into the play-in spots.
“Di na namin iniisip kung 0-5 ba tayo, what matters kung ano yung nasa harap namin and staying in the moment,” the outspoken tactician stressed.
JRU gets back in action after the Lenten break on Tuesday, April 19, against the struggling San Sebastian.