Someone asked me how my blog and newspaper column came to be titled "Bleachers Brew". It's like this, it's an amalgam of sorts of two things: The bleachers area in the stadium/arena where I used to sit when I would watch baseball, football, and basketball games and Miles Davis' great jazz album Bitches Brew. That's how it got culled together. I originally planned on calling it "The View from the Big Chair" that is a nod to Tears For Fear's second album, Songs from the Big Chair. So there.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Looking at the FEU-UE game

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Looking at the FEU-UE game
by rick olivares

The streaking FEU Tamaraws (3-1) handed the UE Red Warriors (2-2), their second straight loss, 73-63, yesterday at the SM MOA Arena.

The Tamaraws overcame a slow start and UE’s pressure defense to take control of the game in the fourth quarter.

While there are certainly factors that decided the game, I wanted to track how the foreign players had an impact on the outcome.

After 20 minutes played, the score stood at 32-31, for the Red Warriors.

FEU’s Anthony Hargrove
Of the 28 offensive plays FEU ran in the third period, Anthony Hargrove was involved in five offensive plays. He turned the ball over twice, scored twice (2/2), and kept the offense going with an offensive board.

So I’d say he turned up positive in three plays and negative in two.

Defensively, Anthony was involved in five plays.

He blocked one shot, grabbed a defensive board, forced one turnover (on Chris Javier) and saw Bong Galanza and Moustapha Arafat score on him.

Again, he has a positive impact (alongside Mac Belo and Mike Tolomia) on three sets and negative on two others. In eight minutes of play, Hargrove had a positive impact on six plays and negative on four others.

So in eight minutes, he was involved in 10 plays. So FEU Coach Nash Racela got quality minutes out of his center (Hargrove).

In the Fourth Quarter, Hargrove played even better as he tallied four points and five rebounds and had no turnovers.

Offensively, he scored on two possessions and had two offensive rebounds.

Defensively, Anthony had three defensive boards and contested two shots – by Roi Sumang and Chris Javier – for misses.

UE’s Moustapha Arafat and Charles Mammie
Again following the halftime break, here’s how the duo did for Coach Derrick Pumaren.

Arafat in 6.8 minutes (3rd Qtr.): four points, one defensive rebound, one assist, and one turnover.
Mammie in 3.1 minutes (3rd Qtr.): four points and one turnover.
Moustapha was involved in five offensive sets: He scored on two of three attempts, missed a high pass from Roi Sumang that could have been an alley-oop slam dunk, and turned the ball over once.

Defensively, he was more active. Arafat forced Anthony Hargrove into a traveling violation and a turnover. As he had to mostly guard players on the wing (Mac Belo and Carl Cruz), he went out where he isn’t the best defender as they can beat him off the dribble.

Cruz, Hargrove, Raymar Jose, and Belo (twice) burned him for shots – two from jumpers and two inside.

Defensively, Mammie forced Carl Cruz to miss to two shots and into a turnover.

In the fourth period, in the combined 10 minutes for the duo, they had two points, three rebounds, and three turnovers.

Defensively, Arafat blocked a shot and forced a miss from Mike Tolomia although Cruz got him for a bucket.

As for Mammie, he also contested a Tolomia attempt that missed.

It would be difficult to compare Arafat and Mammie as both play different games. Arafat is a wing player while Mammie plays more inside.

Why do I think that FEU won this game?

Dating back to last season’s Philippine Collegiate Champions League, I thought that the Tamaraws played better team ball. Hargrove came out of the funk that he was in when RR Garcia and Terrence Romeo were around. Although he has on occasion been absent (see FEU’s opening day win over La Salle), his contributions will also spell the difference if Racela will want his team to go deep in the tournament.

Hargrove doesn’t need too many plays. If he can scavenge for balls and putbacks then that is what will help FEU notch some wins. But he needs to be on the floor.

And after that negative first period where it was all Mike Tolomia, FEU’s next three quarters saw three players lead them – Belo, Tolomia, and Hargrove.


UE on the other hand, like Ateneo, has masked their deficiencies with wins over Adamson and UP. But when they ran into the contenders – La Salle and FEU – they encountered problems.

I think that the integration of Arafat and Mammie still hasn’t worked. They are still ironing out the kinks. Against, UE is a work in progress.

But to say that Arafat and Mammie have underperformed as the reason for their two losses is also incorrect in some ways.

Roi Sumang isn’t his old scoring self. He had one good game and that was against UP. He scored in double figures against La Salle but his field goal percentage wasn’t so good.

And what they need too is consistency from everyone – Gino Jumao-as, Chris Javier, Dan Alberto, Paul Varilla, and the rest of the bench.

In that first quarter against FEU, Galanza, Javier, and Alberto led them. In the second period, it was Paul Varilla. In the third period, UE had consistent scoring as Varilla, Arafat, Mammie, and Galanza all chipped in vital points and the score was close, 52-49. However, in the fourth, it was just Roi Sumang with seven points. And the reigning pound-for-pound hoops player in the UAAP cannot do it alone.

In the UAAP, sometimes, two losses can be considered as quota already in the “L” department. It would be interesting to see how they adjust to all this.

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