MANILA, Philippines – The De La Salle Green Archers, hardly missing a beat despite the graduation and departure of many of its stars from previous seasons, look to bag their fifth win of the Filoil Flying V Preseason Cup when they take on the University of the East Red Warriors at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan on Friday.
The Archers, under new head coach Louie Gonzales, have found new heroes in newcomers Taane Samuel, Brandon Bates and Miggy Corteza to complement their veterans — led by Kib Montalbo, Andrei Caracut and Justin Baltazar.
The Red Warriors are led by old reliables Alvin Pasaol and Philip Manalang. Despite losing Tuesday to the Gilas Cadets, 63-61, after they let a late 11-point lead slip away in the final minutes, UE has impressed. They look to bounce back against La Salle in the 4:30 p.m. Group A clash.
Ateneo, La Salle, and Mapua all share 4-0 records to pace the group.
In other matches, 2-2 Letran looks to get back on the winning track when they take on struggling Jose Rizal University in the first seniors game of the day 12:30 p.m. Letran struggled against a taller and deeper FEU team in their last outing.
Jeff Napa’s souped-up Knights squad look to show no mercy against Vergel Meneses’ young Heavy Bombers, who are winless after five starts.
Another team looking to bounce back from a loss to FEU is Adamson, which prior to the tussle with the Tamaraws was riding a two-match win streak. They will have to deal with a pesky Arellano University team, which even without Kent Salado has impressed with its young lineup that gave Group B pace setter College of St. Benilde fits in their last game.
Adamon and Arellano collide at 2:15 p.m.
In the day’s last match, FEU and dangerous UST face off at 6:30 p.m.
Despite losing Reggie Basibas at the start of the tournament and last year’s star Jordan Sta. Ana a few days ago to a departure for another school, Aldin Ayo’s troops have displayed a fighting heart.
The Tigers have also been without center Steve Akomo and forward Embons Bonleon due to academic concerns and injury for the entire summer. Both are expected to return to active duty soon. In the last game, starting point guard Renzo Subido was sidelined with a sprained ankle.
FEU, after the disappointing loss to College of St. Benilde, came out firing in their last game venting their ire against Adamson.
Tickets to the tournament can be purchased at the gate of venue.