UAAP Finals: Topex Robinson offers no excuses as La Salle eyes bounce back
MANILA, Philippines — Despite absorbing the worst Finals Game 1 loss in the Final Four era, La Salle coach Topex Robinson remained defiant as his team looks to force a rubber match in the UAAP Season 86 men’s basketball tournament.
Robinson looks for a quick turnaround for the Green Archers and Season MVP Kevin Quiambao, who struggled mightily against the Fighting Maroons’ defense.
“Obviously, UP just showed us why they’re the number one team in the UAAP right now. At this point, we cannot really look for other excuses than to really bounce back come Sunday,” said Robinson after La Salle’s 97-67 blowout loss in his UAAP finals debut on Wednesday at Mall of Asia Arena.
The Green Archers’ nine-game winning streak was snapped by the Fighting Maroons’ airtight defense after shooting 2-of-23 from beyond the arc and committing 18 turnovers that allowed the latter to score 24 points off it.
“We didn’t get the memo that this is going to be, you know, as far as the physicality of the game is. So we have to be ready that it’s gonna be the same. As much as we wanna complain about some things, we just wanna really focus on ourselves,” Robinson said.
“There’s no time for us to really cry over spilled milk. If this is one of the records of the worst loss in the finals, we could also do something about it. We know what championship basketball is all about and what it takes and we just have to be prepared for that and make preparations for our game,” he added.
The first-time UAAP coach said the Green Archers have to lick their wounds when they fight for survival in Game 2 and prevent the Fighting Maroons from sweeping the Finals.
“It really hurt everybody. But we have to really go through this. Winning a championship isn’t gonna be easy and I guess taking the easy route will give us this kind of result. We have to go back to trying to figure out how we’re gonna get our guys in a better situation to succeed and then again, just like what I said, it’s done and over with, it really tasted sour,” Robinson said.
“Obviously, there’s going to be a lot of great minds telling us what to do but at the end of the day, we stick together as a group. Whatever happens, we’re gonna win together, we’re gonna lose together.”
La Salle, which eyes to end a seven-year title drought, fights for its dear life in Game 2 against UP on Saturday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
La Salle coach Topex Robinson and Mike Phillips vow to bounce back in Game 2. #UAAPSeason86
Posted by Inquirer Sports on Wednesday, November 29, 2023