Although they failed to defend their title after losing, 69-68, to Ateneo de Manila University in the semifinals of the University Athletic Association of the Philippines Season 79 men’s basketball tournament on Wednesday, Far Eastern University (FEU) head coach Nash Racela is still proud of the Tamaraws.
“Well that’s a hard-fought game. I told my players you have to be proud of yourselves because we did our best. We are just a second away of winning the game. I asked them if they gave their best, they answered yes,” Racela, who celebrated his 45th birthday on Wednesday, said.
Ron Dennison almost became a hero for FEU when he sank a basket a second too late.
“Today even if we lost, we gave more than 100 percent,” he said. “I’m so proud of my boys how we performed the whole season. You win some, you lose some. What important is we are still alive. I don’t want my stint with FEU to be defined by this last game,” he added.
“Sometimes even if you win but you see that your players only gave 60 percent effort, you don’t like that. I think we did well with the program and I know a lot of positive things will come after.”
Racela, who started coaching the Tamaraws in 2012, will also begin to coach Talk ‘N Text in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) starting Friday.
Racela honed to perfection many FEU players among them Mac Belo, Roger Pogoy, Mike Tolomia, Russel Escoto and most recently, Raymar Jose.
Belo, Pogoy, Tolomia and Escoto are now members of PBA teams and the Philippine team.