UAAP: Kagulangan says Focus kept UP on track, not hurting former team

Joel Kagulangan of UP Fighting Maroons.  UAAP pictures

Joel Kagulangan of UP Fighting Maroons. UAAP pictures

MANILA, Philippines – Joel Cagulangan has insisted that his former team, La Salle, face the University of the Philippines as part of the UAAP Season 84 Men’s Basketball Tournament.

Conspiracy with Javier Lucero, Cagulangan scored under his five-point stretch as UP defended La Salle with a thrilling 61-59 win at the Mall of Asia Arena on Thursday for their fifth straight win.

The former NCAA junior MVP of Green Hills in La Salle said his focus is not on disappointing his former school, where he played just four games in 2019 and made a total of three points, 12 rebounds and three assists before delivering his talent to Dilliman a year later.

“Our goal is to finish 6-1 in the first round. It’s not because we faced my former school la Salle. “Cagulangan said he had seven assists, five rebounds and two steals.

“Maybe there is some inspiration but I have already left the past behind. I’m glad we won. Our coaching staff has done a great job preparing us for this game and my team has played well especially in terms of getting offensive rebounds. We resisted them aggressively.

Defensive point guards have been crucial to UP’s five-game winning streak since their first-day loss to Atenio, where they stole 5.2 points, 4.2 rebounds, 4.4 assists, 1.2 in 20 minutes.

Kagulangan said he was only regaining the confidence of coach Goldwyn Monteward, who had fielded him as a key point guard in the last five games.

“I am just returning the confidence given to me by Coach Gold. It’s not easy since the team has recruited many awardees from high school. So I keep working hard. I am grateful for the trust and confidence of the coaching staff in my game, ”he said.

Kagulangan tried to help UP to meet the goal of finishing 6-1 in the first round against Far Eastern University on Saturday.

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