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Elims sweep not enough for Ateneo – Silva

By Jerome Lagunzad

Still on a high after completing an impressive 14-game sweep of the UAAP Season 80 juniors basketball elimination round, Ateneo coach Joe Silva is doing his best to keep the Blue Eaglets’ collective feet on the ground.

After all, the work is still far from done for the Katipunan-based cagers, who still need to win two more matches in the best-of-three finals in their bid to reclaim the coveted title they last hoisted in 2015.

“What we did in the elimination round was a testament to the hardwork the boys put in,” Silva told Tempo-Bulletin in a text message the other day, the morning after Ateneo staved off National University’s late rally for a 78-68 win at the Blue Eagle gym.

“(A) great job by the boys to (complete the) sweep. However, it doesn’t mean anything yet. We have may swept the elims but it doesn’t mean a thing if we don’t get the two most important wins in the finals.”

For now, the Blue Eaglets have some precious time to recharge as they await for the survivor of the step-ladder semifinals that starts tomorrow with the knockout duel between University of Santo Tomas and Adamson for the final playoff spot.

Silva is out to make sure his wards will come in with the same intensity – or even higher if possible.

“We will prepare very hard, correct our mistakes, and get some tune-up games because if we come in prepared, success will take of itself,” he said.