Ayo lauds Jalalon but picks Letran to win NCAA title
MANILA, Philippines – De La Salle University head coach Aldin Ayo was impressed with how much Arellano University guard Jiovani Jalalon has improved after the so-called "Bus Driver" towed the Chiefs all the way to the Finals of the 2016 FilOil Flying V Preseason Tournament.
Jalalon was one of the most impressive players in the preseason tilt, earning Mythical Five honors after averaging 19.1 points, 3.8 boards, and 4.1 assists per game.
He was spectacular in the Final 4, nearly notching a triple-double in their triumph against National University.
Jalalon very nearly led Arellano to an upset of La Salle, scoring 23 points in the first half before fading down the stretch as the Green Archers imposed their will through their superior depth and post play.
"Ang hirap pigilin ng batang 'yun," Ayo admitted after La Salle's 86-74 victory in the Finals of the tournament. "Kanina, kitang-kita niyo namang ang hirap pigilan ng bata."
"Siguro, kinapos lang doon sa endgame, nakaramdam din ng pagod," he added. "Pero (he's) one of the best point guards in the amateurs, and he's ripe for the pros."
Jalalon has had a busy offseason: aside from competing in preseason tilts with Arellano, he also represented the Philippines in the SEABA Stankovic Cup with the Gilas Cadets. Along the way, he has improved greatly, even showing off a better shooting stroke.