Wednesday, April 6, 2011

S73 Autopsy: DLSU Green Archers

Outgoing Players
- Ferdinand (2 points, 2.2 rebounds) (it is presumed that Ferdinand will not be returning for his fifth year)
- Gab Banal (2.8 points, 0.8 rebounds, 0.4 steals) (transferred to MIT)
- Joel Tolentino (4.7 points, 3.1 rebounds, 3.1 assists, 0.7 steals) (transferred to CSB)

Win/Loss Records
- Season 73: 8-6 (4th, lost in the Final Four to FEU)
- Season 72: 5-9 (6th)
- Season 71: 10-4 (2nd, lost in the Finals to Ateneo de Manila University)

Key Stats
- First in the league in field goals attempted per game (68) and free throws attempted per game (22.8)
- First in the league in offensive rebounds per game (15.4) and total rebounds per game (42.33)
- First in the league in bench points per game (38.73)
- Last in the league in fouls given up per game (20.53), opponents' free throws made per game (14.27) and opponents' free throws attempted per game (22.4)
- Last in the league in starter points per game (31.07)

Hustle machines: Maui Villanueva and Jovet Mendoza helped DLSU get tons of boards (Photo source)

Season in a Snapshot
Call it a season of "Good news, bad news." Good news: the Green Archers bucked a lot of preseason talk about being hindered by a rookie and sophomore filled squad. Bad news: Because they were mostly rookies and sophomores, the season was, as a whole, pretty up and down. Good news: In their resume, a come from behind win versus Ateneo in the first round, and a 14-point second round triumph over FEU. Bad news: Alongside that though, a 4-point loss to NU (and just a 3-point win over them in the second round), and an inability to match-up with Adamson, never beating them in two encounters.

As the season wound down, the trend continued. Good news: The Archers managed to return to the Final Four, forcing FEU into overtime. Bad news: they only scored a measly 4 points while allowing 14 to the Tams in the extra five minutes. Still, a foundation has been set, and the Archers showed, after a season off, that they're still a team to be reckoned with.

Team Needs
- Post player/big men with a more well-rounded skill-set

Once again, La Salle brings a talented rookie class to the floor, but what's different this season is that majority of the recruits will add size to a team's that's really known more for their guards. In the end, La Salle's season will hinge on the coaching of Dindo Pumaren. The best case scenario is his 2007 UE team, which had 3 bigs running the floor with 2 deadly shooters. Worst case scenario is a disjointed team on both ends of the court that gets beat by more focused squads with shorter rotations.

Projected Recruits
- The 6'8" Arnold Van Opstal has been hyped by one particular journalist as La Salle's "Great White Hope." After his debut was delayed by a season due to academics, Van Opstal will need to show better mechanics on both ends of the floor after struggling in high school against players smaller than him.
- Former NCAA Juniors Division MVP, Louie Vigil also suffered a delayed debut because of academic problems. Able to swing between both forward positions, especially in La Salle's system, Vigil is another scoring threat that might draw double-teams.
- Fil-Canadian RP Youth U-18 standout Norbert Torres might be the most polished and versatile big man La Salle has had in years. Not only does he have an above-average post game, and a jumper that extends to beyond the three-point line, Torre has also shown remarkable hustle in going for the rebound.
- Ponso Gotladera surprised a lot of people when his recruitment was announced. A former San Beda Red Cub, Gotladera is a machine in the post, especially given the fact that he's just a rookie.
- A 6'2" combo guard from La Salle Greenhills, Michael Pate is considered extremely raw and despite his raw talent, might see a year in Team B when the Summer Tournaments are all over
- LA Revilla returns after a two-season absence due to medical reasons. Averaging ___ in his rookie year, Revilla was more scorer than facilitator, but he was often fearless on the court, and might be a better leader than the outgoing Tolentino. That said, team staff might want to monitor his minutes just to be sure he doesn't suffer a relapse.
- Green Archers insiders say their roster could still bear a few surprises. As early as October, rumors were being thrown around that the Archers would be reaching out to these two UST Tiger Cubs, Ismael Corre and Jaypee Sarcia. They'd both bring even more shooting to the Archers though it's unlikely that either would make the final cut of the roster. I think they could look at some of UE's cuts and find a gem or two, personally.
- DLSU was the school that kicked off the "Ael Banal out of Ateneo" news, until they were supplanted by presumptions that he would be following his RP Youth U-18 coach to NU. Then in December, word came that he was practicing alongside Joshua Webb and his brother Gab in the US. But then 2011 happened, and the DLSU link was severed again. With his name being removed by NU from their summer roster, could he be making his way back to La Salle, even after his brother decided that it wasn't the place for him?

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