USJ-R coach on strong start in Cesafi: ‘We need to stay humble, hungry’

By: Brian J. Ochoa - CDN Digital | October 04,2023 - 10:00 AM

USJ-R Cesafi

USJ-R Jaguars head coach Melo Banua talks to his players in a huddle after their Cesafi college basketball win over SWU-Phinma Cobras. CDN Digital photo | Glendale Rosal

CEBU CITY, Philippines—University of San Jose-Recoletos (USJ-R) head coach Melo Banua understands there’s more than enough reason to be happy with the way the team is performing this early in the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc (Cesafi) men’s basketball tournament. 

USJ-R is currently at the top of the team standings, sporting a 3-0 (win-loss) record.

Its latest win was against newcomer Cebu Roosevelt Memorial Colleges (CRMC) on Sunday, October 1, 2023.

READ: Cesafi: USJ-R Jaguars now 3-0

Despite the strong start, Banua knows there’s still a long way to go to achieve the team’s goal.

“I feel so good na 3-0 me karon,” the new USJ-R coach said. “Pero kulang pa gihapon, because di man ni ang main goal.”

(I feel so good that we’re 3-0. But this is not enough because this is not the main goal.)

Of course we all know what coach Banua, the bench tactician who took over just this season, is after.

“Mag celebrate lang ‘ta karon, enjoy ang daog. Pero focus na sad sa next game,” said the coach who used to lead the high school team of San Sebastian College-Recoletos in Manila. 

(We can celebrate now, enjoy the wins. But we have to focus on the next game.)

Before the win against CRMC, USJ-R also beat the Southwestern University (SWU)-Phinma Cobras and the University of San Carlos (USC) Warriors.

Their next opponent is the University of the Philippines (UP).

READ MORE: Cesafi: USJ-R Jaguars complete day’s sweep

Banua believes the the Jaguars have a lot to improve it they want to win the crown this year. One of the things he noticed is that the team needs to be good in finishing off its foes.

“[The team needs to have] killer instinct every game. It has to stay humble and stay hungry in the coming games,” he said.

In the coming game against UP, Banua said USJ-R is not taking this team lightly.  

“We need to be ready because all teams want to beat us now. And these are young players who play like they have nothing to lose,” Banua said.


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TAGS: basketball, Cesafi, USJ-R

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