The Red Warriors still feel the sting of having a spot in the Final Four last UAAP 77 slip through their fingers. It was a desperate bid for a shot at the semi-finals that they lost against the ultimate victors of 2014, the NU Bulldogs. It was an experience that left a bitter taste in the Warriors's mouths, but it is one that they cannot allow to burden them as they charge into UAAP 78 against drastically different opponents and internal challenges to overcome.
The UE squad will be walking in with a much smaller team than the rest of the competition, sporting an all all-Filipino roster with no imports. And while other teams in the UAAP have seen their fair share of loss as key players depart, the Warriors will likewise have to cope with the departure of flagship players such as Roi Sumang, Charles Mammie, and Bong Galanza who have been so critical to their stellar performance in seasons past. Returning veterans such as Fran Yu and Philip Manalang will have to work double time to reign in the team while Coach Derrick Pumaren will have to develop strategies to compensate for the serious height disadvantage that they have against other teams.
While Coach Pumaren is conviced he can turn their perceived handicap into an advantage by emphasizing speed and faster-paced plays, the odds seem stacked against the Warriors this season. But none of this has managed to break their resolve. They're coming in this season with a eye for what was denied them in the last, a shot at the final four and, hopefully, a championship in the end.
In Elimination: 06 Wins - 08 Losses