New De La Salle University (DLSU) head coach Aldin Ayo plans to bring the championship momentum to the Green Archers as they begin their campaign in the University Athletics Association of the Philippines (UAAP) Season 79 men’s basketball tournament on September 7 at the Mall of Asia Arena.
“To win the championship of course. Every time you go to competitions, you always want to win and hopefully, we can grab it,” Ayo said in a phone interview.
Ayo ended his National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA) coaching stint by leading the Colegio de San Juan de Letran Knights to victory in last year’s championship. He replaced Juno Sauler who led the Green Archers to a championship against the University of Santo Tomas Growling Tigers in 2013.
He added that the UAAP and NCAA are almost similar though the UAAP crowd is bigger.
“We just have to absorb the season and we just have to play motivated and execute all the things we practiced and we will get our objectives,” he replied when asked how he intend to strengthen the Green Archers after their fifth place finish last season.
Since the Far Eastern University (FEU) Tamaraws defeated La Salle in the elimination round last year, the 38-year-old coach said that his wards would go all-out when they face FEU in their season opener.
He expects stiff competition in the league this year. “Honestly, they all are competitive. This is an annual competition so I am expecting all the teams prepared for it. All of the teams will do their best and all will want to win.”
Ayo also expects that rookies Ben Mbala, Aljun Melecio, Ricci Rivero, Justin Baltazar, Brent Paraiso and Mark Paez will deliver this season. He said that his wards are already adapting to his system.
“They are very accommodating and very supportive. I am happy to be here. I’m speechless. Everything is provided for their athletes. And the treatment here is very nice. It’s easy for me to adjust,” Ayo said of the La Salle community.
Tasked to be team captains are Jeron Teng and Thomas Torres.