Sean Manganti: Adamson not giving up on Finals dream
MANILA, Philippines – After failing to reprise his role as game hero, Adamson's Sean Manganti expects the Soaring Falcons to bounce back from their 71-73 loss against the University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons in the UAAP Season 81 Final Four.
"We never give up," said the Adamson captain.
"We worked hard this season to get that twice-to-beat advantage and you know we commend our team for still playing hard and showing that we can come back even though we were down."
Adamson and UP dispute the last championship berth at 3:30 pm on Wednesday, November 28, at the Araneta Coliseum. (LIVE UPDATES: Adamson vs U.P. – UAAP Season 81 Final Four Game 2)
Last Saturday, the Soaring Falcons rallied back from an 11-point deficit at the start of the 4th quarter behind Manganti, who scored 10 of his 15 points in the payoff period.
The Filipino-American was close to sending the game into overtime when he drew a crucial foul off Janjan Jaboneta and sank both charities to tie the game at 71-all with 3.7 ticks left in the game. (HIGHLIGHTS: Adamson vs U.P. – UAAP Season 81 Final Four Game)
But Bright Akhuetie managed to convert a game-winning bucket during UP's last possession that forced a do-or-die game.
"You know we’re disappointed, but you have to give them credit because they came out strong, they had a great game and they made some clutch baskets, so you gotta give it to them, you gotta respect them," said Manganti after the Falcons missed their initial chance to bring Adamson to the Finals for the first time in 26 years.
Although season MVP Akhuetie was held to only 6 points, Manganti – who had made game-winning shots over UP in past games – admitted that the Maroons' guards outplayed them.
"Papi (Sarr) was doing his job. Us guards, we got killed by Juan (Gomez de Liaño) and Paul (Desiderio)."
The Falcons are already bracing for a raucous UP crowd, but Manganti will make sure that Wednesday's rubber match won't be his last game this season. – Rappler.com