The Heart

What is the heart? Well, literally, its the most important organ of the body, the organ which pumps oxygen-rich blood throughout the body, for us to survive.

What a game!!!! The La Salle communities’ hearts must have pumped thousands of liters of blood to produce enough oxygen-rich red blood into a sea, a sea which almost parted, then collapsed. Well thank God Pharoah had a hard heart.

I made reference to the famous biblical story of Moses and Exodus because a loss to NU would have been a disaster of biblical proportions. But as in that story, we were victorious. We survived. We were free….temporarily at least of the pressure of having to win two more difficult future games, one of which has a second coming in their team. The greatest stories are yet to be told this season. Phew.

We actually started well, again, with our defense at the forefront. Limiting the opponent to one shot after a miss. I really thought that this game was going to be another easy one, a calm before the storm.

Then a weird thing happened. Brandon Bates got four fouls in one half, one of which was pekeng foul, este, a faking a foul technical (which counts as a personal fo in the amateurs), after an actual foul.

How the heck do referees determine if a player goes down or his head snaps backwards, that someone was faking one? I mean not all of them are fake right? Another one on Caracut later on was very annoying. He got hit on the throat sirs. Legitimate pick, nothing dirty on Issa Gaye, but the pick just erased Andrei. Literally.

In comparison, remember the Ravena brothers’ head snapping instincts? Aren’t those TRUE PEKENG FOULS???? Food for thought and point of reference and argument refs??????? Will you call that same play against “The 3rd”? Refs???? Hellooooo!!!!!

Ok I digress from the game but not from the point. Isn’t calling four fouls on a key player, even if early in the game, a way for the referees calls deciding the outcome of the game? I mean in this case, our defensive rotations were suddenly thrown in disarray.

Guys, for practically the whole game, the Man of Steel was unavailable. Compound that with the Man of Steal injured, then we only had a 7 man rotation. And none of the anchor defense of those two. The coach had to call next man up in Corteza and Capacio, didn’t he?

Thus, the game turned into an offensive contest, something we are not comfortable with (although we did score 110 previously, but mind you, it was through defense).

Fortunately for us though, the game was a scoring contest between the De La Salle Basketball Team vs the Tag Team Combo of JC Clemente (1st half), and Dave Ildefonso (2nd half). And the manner was different.

The Clemente scoring show in the first half was from effective set up plays. Drawing defenses by penetration and dish out. The Ildefonso version was give-me-the-ball-get-out-of-my-way. Same amount of scoring, but less efficiency.

It may be true that Ildefonso single handedly brought them back from an 8 point deficit to one at a late crucial stage of the game, but when his efficiency went down, this was countered by a 9-1 bomb by Baltazar, Santillan, Melecio, and the cherry shot, the Joaqui Three.

Well, a win is a win, and we won. Although our hearts pounded in this game, it was actually good for the team. Be truly happy.

For another meaning of the word heart is not its literal definition. The team’s HEART, its ANIMO, came to fore. Something that wasn’t or cannot be measured specially by pre-season predictions and naysayers who do their future-seeing mumbo-jumbo.

But that’s what we have guys. A team with HEART. Just ask Leonard Santillan. That word has another meaning to him. An admirable sense of family.

The community is with you bro. Keep fighting.