Sunday, August 7, 2011


History Lesson:
The Generals and the Altas split the season series last year, with EAC issuing an early walloping, 78-66, with Milan Vargas (21 points) and Claude Cubo (19 points) leading the charge. Perpetual Help had an early 21-11 lead after the first quarter, but collapsed in the fourth, allowing a 25-8 run. Round two saw the Altas get an early lead again, 17 to 9, but this time they didn't relinquish it, as a 22 to 7 advantage in turnover points sustained them to the end for the 69-52 win.

EAC Storyline : After a strong 2-1 start had people talking, the Generals found themselves crushed three in a row by Mapua, San Beda and San Sebastian, a stretch that probably would give any team the fits. Individually, the team has talent, but their game often devolves into "you go, then I go, then you go," as Joshua Torralba, Milan Vargas and Claude Cubo seem to be taking a far too individualistic approach to the game, while Jolas Paguia can't understand the inconsistent minutes he gets from the coaching staff. That said, they have a ton of firepower, and against a weak defensive team, could probably light them up for a ton of points.
Stat to Watch : The Generals are dead last in assists, with just 13.7 a game, a clear indicator of the one on one heavy style they play. If they are just going to go play by themselves for most of the game, they could help themselves out a lot by attacking the rim more instead of forcing up long shots, as they're also the team that averages the least free throws attempted and made per game with 11.5 makes of 20.67 attempts.
Player to Watch : The coaching staff of the Generals need to take a nice long sit down with Joshua Torralba and point out that a 29% field goal shooting percentage is not a good thing, ever. He's also turning the ball over 3.3 times a game on some reckless moves, further hurting his team. While he's a dynamic scorer when he's in a groove, and he seems to have a knack with circus layups, EAC might be better off having him just attack the rim, where he's a 74% shooter on 27 attempts.

UPHSD Storyline : High off their first win, the Altas came up short against Benilde, but having Jeorge Allen back has definitely helped this squad as the forward chipped in 12 points and six rebounds in his first complete game of the season. They have a couple of winnable games left on their schedule, and with a little luck, could leave Arellano behind in the basement by the end of the first round.
Stat to Watch : The tiny Altas ought to be running at every opportunity, to get in a few scores before the opposing defense sets up and gets a shot blocker to return their attempts in their face. However, that's exactly what's not happening, as Perpetual Help is dead last in the fastbreak points category with a measly eight a game. Is it any wonder they also average the fewest points per game with 67.33 points an outing?
Player to Watch : Scottie Thompson is developing into the second option for the Altas behind Jett Vidal, dropping 23 to keep Perpetual Help in the game late against Saint Benilde. With Thompson, you get a player who's pretty quick if you give him the first step, and who's not afraid to attack the rim, a great compliment to Vidal's perimeter-based game. With nearly everyone else on this team preferring to stick with perimeter jumpshots, Thompson can at least keep the defense honest by driving in.

Prediction: EAC Generals

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