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Co still proud of Mapua's fighting spirit despite home loss

Mapua coach Atoy Co. Josh Albelda, ABS-CBN Sports
MANILA, Philippines – Mapua head coach Atoy Co saw plenty of room for improvement from the Cardinals, yet he is nevertheless proud of their effort against the Perpetual Help Altas on Thursday on their home court.

Playing in their own gym, the Cardinals got off to a poor start, but rallied from a 10-point third quarter deficit to take a slim 54-51 lead with under four minutes left. They were unable to complete the comeback, however, with Keith Pido and AJ Coronel conspiring in crunch time to secure a 63-60 win for the Altas.

The loss dropped Mapua to 1-2 in the NCAA Season 93 tournament, yet Co says that is already a good result for a team that is without their main man, two-time MVP Allwell Oraeme.

"At least the boys really fought their heart out, we fight to the end," said Coy.

"'Yung puso na lumaban kami, lumamang pa kami, muntik na. Kaya lang, breaks of the game, atsaka mas matangkad sila. Talagang kulang kami sa manpower, pero sa nilalaro namin, wala na akong mahanap pa," he added.

For Co, there was no additional pressure to win just because they were playing on their home court – precisely because of the lack of manpower in his line-up. Not only is Oraeme not suiting up for the team, but he also lost a reliable shooter in Darrell Menina, who is now at National U. Also gone are veterans CJ Isit and Joseph Eriobu, who played key roles in last season's team that made the Final 4.

Source: http://news.abs-cbn.com/sports/07/20/17/co-still-proud-of-mapuas-fighting-spirit-despite-home-loss

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