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  1. #1

    NU in Season 77

    Still a contender...

    Eagles, Bulldogs feast on listless Falcons, Tigers

    4:51 am |

    Monday, July 14th, 2014

    MANILA, Philippines — National University coach Eric Altamirano had boldly declared that the Bulldogs, even with the departure of two-time MVP Ray Parks, would keep up with the top contenders.

    True enough, the Bulldogs surprisingly overwhelmed last year’s finalist University of Santo Tomas, 59-40, in the 77th UAAP men’s basketball tournament Sunday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.

    “We played some defense and they (Tigers) didn’t shoot well,” said Altamirano. “We’re confident with our game. I think the boys are starting to jell.”

    Earlier, Ateneo also flashed murderous form in dumping Adamson, 79-57, to join the Bulldogs and opening-day winners University of the East and Far Eastern University on top.

    Kiefer Ravena showed his old firepower and rookie Arvin Tolentino proved to be as promising as billed as the duo fueled the Blue Eagles’ one-sided win early.

    “All of us wanted to be better than what we were last season,” coach Bo Perasol said of his Blue Eagles, who were nowhere in sight all summer as they trained in the Unites States, Japan and South Korea.

    Gelo Alolino led the Bulldogs’ second-half breakaway to finish with 13 points, but the game also showed how miserable the Tigers played as they committed a whopping 26 turnovers and shot a pitiful 24 percent from the field.

    Ravena, who had a less stellar showing last season due to injuries, pumped in a game-high 22 points on top of four rebounds and four assists.

    “It’s a new start for us,” said Ravena. “A new adventure begins for us starting with this win.”

    UST chief gunner Kevin Ferrer had seven turnovers and only five points for the Tigers, who wound up just a point better than the league’s lowest production of 39 points the past decade.

    The Bulldogs outscored the Tigers, 22-10, in the third quarter to stretch their lead to 16, 47-31, after a slim 25-21 halftime lead.
    Behind Alolino and Troy Rosario, the Bulldogs surged ahead to a 21-point spread, 58-37, as the Tigers continued to look out of sync.

    The Eagles zoomed to a 10-1 start before opening up a 27-point gap, 47-20, as Ravena and Tolentino outscored the entire Adamson squad with a combined 21 points.

    “The gauge is still how Kiefer will lead the team, but he will definitely need the help and assistance of everybody,” said Perasol.
    The scores:

    First Game

    ATENEO 79—K. Ravena 22, Newsome 12, A. Tolentino 12, Pessumal 8, Elorde 6, Javellosa 4, Apacible 4, Asistio 3, Capacio 2, Gotladera 2, Babilonia 2, Doliguez 2, V. Tolentino 0, T. Ravena 0, Lim 0, Porter 0.

    ADAMSON 57—Villanueva 15, Rios 15, Trollano 7, Ochea 7, Iñigo 4, Gumtang 4, Baytan 2, Aquino 2, Nalos 1, Polican 0, Barrera 0.
    Quarters: 24-11, 47-20, 62-35, 79-57

    Second Game

    NU 59—Alolino 13, Rosario 9, Diputado 8, Aroga 8, Khobuntin 6, Alejandro 5, Neypes 4, Perez 2, Celda 2, Javelona 1, Salim 1, Yu 0, Betayene 0, Atangan 0.

    UST 40—Abdul 11, Mariano 10, Sheriff 7, Ferrer 5, Subido 3, Lo 2, Daquioag 2, Basibas 0, Pe 0, Gayosa 0, Vigil 0.
    Quarters: 14-9, 25-21, 47-31, 59-40
    FRIENDS LANG KAMI

  2. #2
    Eagles alone on top at 3-0

    Archers avoid 0-3 hole, nip NU

    By Jasmine W. Payo |

    Philippine Daily Inquirer 4:46 am |

    Thursday, July 24th, 2014

    Arvin Tolentino proved yet again that he’s this season’s prize catch as Ateneo turned back University of the Philippines, 86-75, to grab the solo lead with its third straight victory in the UAAP men’s basketball tournament yesterday at Mall of Asia Arena.

    Tolentino, an early frontrunner for the top rookie plum, poured in 14 of his 20 points in the second half to help the Blue Eagles quell the Maroons’ persistent rallies.

    “There was no doubt in my mind that he can make an impact right away as far as scoring is concerned,” Ateneo coach Bo Perasol said of Tolentino, a former San Beda high school star. “The best is yet to come for him. He’s used to highly competitive games when he was in high school, that’s why we really pursued him.”

    La Salle later survived an even tougher challenge as Jason Perkins buried a shot clock-beating basket to bail out the Green Archers against National University, 57-55.

    Perkins knocked in the Archers’ last six points, including a crucial basket underneath off an inbound pass from Jeron Teng with just 1.9 seconds left on the shot clock.

    That big basket gave the Archers a four-point cushion, 57-53, in the last 6.7 seconds and helped the Archers seal their first victory in three games.

    “It took a while for the play to develop,” La Salle coach Juno Sauler said of Perkins’ winning play. “We were lucky there.”
    Perkins topscored with 14 and grabbed seven rebounds, while big man Norbert Torres, who also came through with key baskets inside the last five minutes, finished with 13 points.

    Ravena posted 19 points, five rebounds and four assists for the Eagles, while Chris Newsome fueled the team’s big start with 18 points and 12 boards.

    The winless Maroons moved within a bucket, 51-49, in the third quarter before the Blue Eagles roared back with a 12-0 spurt, half coming from Tolentino, that stretched the lead back to double figures, 63-49.

    The Archers, who spoiled the Bulldogs’ bid to join the Eagles on top, trailed 48-49 before Torres and Perkins teamed up to wrest the lead, 53-49.

    After a Troy Rosario shot pushed the Bulldogs within a bucket, 53-51, Perkins responded with a putback off a Teng miss to give the Archers a 55-51 edge with 36.6 seconds left.

    The scores:

    First Game

    ATENEO 86—Tolentino 20, K. Ravena 19, Newsome 18, Capacio 9, Elorde 7, Pessumal 5, Babilonia 2, Gotladera 2, Javellosa 2, Lim 2, Apacible 0, T. Ravena 0.

    UP 75—Lao 16, Gallarza 10, Asilum 9, Gingerich 9, Juruena 9, Dario 6, Vito 6, Reyes 5, Moralde 5, Bederi 0.

    Quarters: 23-21, 46-38, 66-54, 86-75

    Second Game

    LA SALLE 57—Perkins 14, N. Torres 13, Teng 9, Van Opstal 7, Vosotros 7, Andrada 3, Montalbo 2, Rivero 2, Bolick 0.

    NU 55—Aroga 12, Rosario 10, Alolino 9, Khobuntin 9, Javelona 5, Diputado 4, Alejandro 3, Neypes 2, Perez 1, Betayene 0, Atangan 0, Celda 0, Salim 0.

    Quarters: 12-16, 35-29, 45-43, 57-55
    FRIENDS LANG KAMI

  3. #3
    NU lost this game in the last 8.9 seconds. First there was that failure to secure the loose ball with 1.9 seconds left on the Lasalle shotclock. Then there was that failure to defend the inbound underneath Lasalle's own basket that led to Perkins making that pivotal basket. Then there was that confused return play on their own end that saw Alfred Aroga dribbling away most of whatever time they had remaining.
    FRIENDS LANG KAMI

  4. #4
    Diputado, Javelona give NU lift in win over Ateneo

    By Mark Giongco |

    INQUIRER.net 7:45 pm |

    Saturday, July 26th, 2014

    MANILA, Philippines — National University banked on its guards down the stretch to beat erstwhile unbeaten Ateneo, 64-60, in the UAAP Season 77 men’s basketball tournament Saturday at the Mall of Asia Arena.

    Veteran forward Troy Rosario led the Bulldogs with a near double-double effort with 16 points and eight rebounds but the young backcourt of Paolo Javelona and Rev Diputado provided stability in the crucial stage of the game.

    “I’m very proud of our boys especially our bench. Like what I said, this season the identity of our team is not relying on just one player,” said NU head coach Eric Altamirano after his squad pinned Ateneo its first loss in four games. “I think the team really showed character today (Saturday) especially when we were missing our free throws.”

    “Our bench players stepped up especially Javelona and Diputado,” Altamirano, whose team tied the Blue Eagles in second place with identical 3-1 marks, commended.

    The second-year guard Javelona and rookie Diputado responded to the challenge facing Ateneo’s veteran guards Kiefer Ravena and Nico Elorde.

    Javelona made three out of four free throws in the final one minute and 24 seconds that extended the Bulldogs’ lead back to four, 60-56, after Diputado scored on a reverse and sank a free throw late to keep the Blue Eagles at bay.

    “We felt at the end we needed to focus more on our defense, make sure we stop Kiefer and we wanna pressure the point guard. The last few minutes they did a good job at controlling the tempo,” Altamirano said on why he opted to stick with Javelona and Diputado to finish the game and keep its lead guard Gelo Alolino on the bench.

    “Gelo will always be our leader. We will stick with him. We need him this season to be our leader and be our main point guard.”

    Alolino didn’t finish with his usual numbers, scoring just six points on two-of-nine shooting from the field with more turnovers (2) than assists (1).

    The Bulldogs’ defense limit Ravena to his lowest output in four games with 13 points on a horrible shooting night. Ravena made just three out of his 20 attempts from the field. He also misfired on all of his seven attempts from long range.

    Rosario split his charities to sealed the game with 11.9 seconds to go.

    “We’re very happy he (Rosario) is delivering. His rebounding and defense is really a big help to the team.”

    Glenn Khobuntin added eight points and 16 rebounds for the Bulldogs, who will take on Adamson next.

    Blue-chip rookie Arvin Tolentino had a game-high 17 points and team-best nine rebounds for the Eagles, who shot just 31% from the field.
    FRIENDS LANG KAMI

  5. #5
    No. 1 Bulldogs feast on Falcons

    By Jasmine W. Payo |

    Philippine Daily Inquirer 4:15 am |

    Thursday, July 31st, 2014

    National University caught Adamson on a bad day and the Bulldogs carved out the most lopsided triumph this season with a 62-25 rout to grab the solo lead in the UAAP men’s basketball tournament yesterday at Mall of Asia Arena.

    The Bulldogs set the tone for the whopping 37-point romp right in the opening minutes as they zoomed to early double-digit leads behind Jay Alejandro, Gelo Alolino and Glenn Khobuntin.

    “When we watched Adamson in the last two games they were really shooting well,” said NU coach Eric Altamirano. “Today they were not shooting well. It just so happened we played good defense and they couldn’t buy any shot.”

    Alejandro unloaded 10 of his team-high 13 points in the first half where the Bulldogs erected a comfortable 29-point cushion, 40-11, on the way to their fourth victory in five games.

    Earlier, Mac Belo continued to do wonders coming off the bench as Far Eastern University downed University of the East, 73-63, to climb to a share of second at 3-1.

    Belo, the standout forward who didn’t start for the second straight game, sparked the Tamaraws’ comeback from an early deficit before finishing with a game-high 21 points.

    “He’s very consistent,” FEU coach Nash Racela said of Belo. “His true leadership showed today. Even if he came off the bench in a big game, he still gives the numbers.”

    Anthony Hargrove, who teamed up with Roger Pogoy and Achie Iñigo in a fourth-quarter breakaway, posted a double-double of 14 points and 12 rebounds.

    The Falcons’ three-point output in the first quarter was the lowest scored by a team since the Bulldogs had the same measly production against Ateneo in 2009.

    The Bulldogs led by as many as 39 points, 58-19, as the miserable Falcons could not score more than eight points in any quarters.

    “I didn’t see them relax,” Altamirano said of his Bulldogs, the league’s surprise early leader. “I saw their body language even before the game that they were very focused.”

    Alolino added 10 points, eight rebounds and four assists, while Troy Rosario had 10 markers and 10 boards for the Bulldogs.

    “Being No. 1—we cannot rest on that,” said Altamirano. “This season is very unpredictable. You can go from 1 to 7 in a span of two games. What’s important is we have to be consistent every game.”

    The Tamaraws came back from an early 13-point deficit, 9-22, with Belo and Hargrove fueling a 10-3 blitz at the start of the second quarter to trim the gap to 22-25.

    By the second half, the Tamaraws were in full control and kept UE star guard Roi Sumang scoreless in the first three quarters.

    The Warriors absorbed their second straight loss to drop into a tie with idle La Salle at 2-2. The Falcons remained winless in four outings.

    The scores:

    First Game

    FEU 73—Belo 21, Hargrove 14, Tolomia 13, Cruz 7, Iñigo 7, Pogoy 5, Jose 4, Dennison 2, Escoto 0, Denila 0.

    UE 63—Varilla 12, Galanza 11, Javier 8, Arafat 8, Sumang 7, Mammie 6, Alberto 5, Jumao-as 4, De Leon 2, Olayon 0.

    Quarters: 12-22, 31-32, 52-49, 73-63

    Second Game

    NU 62—Alejandro 13, Alolino 10, Rosario 10, Khobuntin 7, Aroga 6, Cauilan 3, Neypes 3, Yu 3, Diputado 2, Javelona 2, Salim 2, Perez 1, Betayene 0, Atangan 0, Celda 0, Tansingco 0 .

    ADAMSON 25—Trollano 7, Ochea 5, Nalos 4, Monteclaro 3, Aquino 2, Baytan 2, Barrera 1,Pedrosa 1, Butron 0, Donahue 0, Garcia 0, Gumtang 0, Iñigo 0, Rios 0, Villanueva 0.

    Quarters: 19-3, 40-11, 56-17, 62-25

  6. #6
    No. 1 Bulldogs feast on Falcons

    By Jasmine W. Payo |

    Philippine Daily Inquirer 4:15 am |

    Thursday, July 31st, 2014

    National University caught Adamson on a bad day and the Bulldogs carved out the most lopsided triumph this season with a 62-25 rout to grab the solo lead in the UAAP men’s basketball tournament yesterday at Mall of Asia Arena.

    The Bulldogs set the tone for the whopping 37-point romp right in the opening minutes as they zoomed to early double-digit leads behind Jay Alejandro, Gelo Alolino and Glenn Khobuntin.

    “When we watched Adamson in the last two games they were really shooting well,” said NU coach Eric Altamirano. “Today they were not shooting well. It just so happened we played good defense and they couldn’t buy any shot.”

    Alejandro unloaded 10 of his team-high 13 points in the first half where the Bulldogs erected a comfortable 29-point cushion, 40-11, on the way to their fourth victory in five games.

    Earlier, Mac Belo continued to do wonders coming off the bench as Far Eastern University downed University of the East, 73-63, to climb to a share of second at 3-1.

    Belo, the standout forward who didn’t start for the second straight game, sparked the Tamaraws’ comeback from an early deficit before finishing with a game-high 21 points.

    “He’s very consistent,” FEU coach Nash Racela said of Belo. “His true leadership showed today. Even if he came off the bench in a big game, he still gives the numbers.”

    Anthony Hargrove, who teamed up with Roger Pogoy and Achie Iñigo in a fourth-quarter breakaway, posted a double-double of 14 points and 12 rebounds.

    The Falcons’ three-point output in the first quarter was the lowest scored by a team since the Bulldogs had the same measly production against Ateneo in 2009.

    The Bulldogs led by as many as 39 points, 58-19, as the miserable Falcons could not score more than eight points in any quarters.

    “I didn’t see them relax,” Altamirano said of his Bulldogs, the league’s surprise early leader. “I saw their body language even before the game that they were very focused.”

    Alolino added 10 points, eight rebounds and four assists, while Troy Rosario had 10 markers and 10 boards for the Bulldogs.

    “Being No. 1—we cannot rest on that,” said Altamirano. “This season is very unpredictable. You can go from 1 to 7 in a span of two games. What’s important is we have to be consistent every game.”

    The Tamaraws came back from an early 13-point deficit, 9-22, with Belo and Hargrove fueling a 10-3 blitz at the start of the second quarter to trim the gap to 22-25.

    By the second half, the Tamaraws were in full control and kept UE star guard Roi Sumang scoreless in the first three quarters.

    The Warriors absorbed their second straight loss to drop into a tie with idle La Salle at 2-2. The Falcons remained winless in four outings.

    The scores:

    First Game

    FEU 73—Belo 21, Hargrove 14, Tolomia 13, Cruz 7, Iñigo 7, Pogoy 5, Jose 4, Dennison 2, Escoto 0, Denila 0.

    UE 63—Varilla 12, Galanza 11, Javier 8, Arafat 8, Sumang 7, Mammie 6, Alberto 5, Jumao-as 4, De Leon 2, Olayon 0.

    Quarters: 12-22, 31-32, 52-49, 73-63

    Second Game

    NU 62—Alejandro 13, Alolino 10, Rosario 10, Khobuntin 7, Aroga 6, Cauilan 3, Neypes 3, Yu 3, Diputado 2, Javelona 2, Salim 2, Perez 1, Betayene 0, Atangan 0, Celda 0, Tansingco 0 .

    ADAMSON 25—Trollano 7, Ochea 5, Nalos 4, Monteclaro 3, Aquino 2, Baytan 2, Barrera 1,Pedrosa 1, Butron 0, Donahue 0, Garcia 0, Gumtang 0, Iñigo 0, Rios 0, Villanueva 0.

    Quarters: 19-3, 40-11, 56-17, 62-25

  7. #7
    Bulldogs overpower Warriors; Eagles win

    By Olmin Leyba (The Philippine Star) |

    Updated August 4, 2014 - 12:00am

    MANILA, Philippines - National U rode on a big 9-0 tear and clamped down on defense in the stretch to eke out a come-from-behind 57-55 victory over University of the East and keep the solo lead in the UAAP Season 77 men’s basketball tournament at the Smart Araneta Coliseum yesterday.

    Cameroonian Alfred Aroga banged in 18 points and 15 rebounds in a dominating performance that helped the pacesetting Bulldogs complete the win, storming to their third straight and 5-1 overall.

    “It was a tightly contested ballgame; it could have gone either way. But I just want to commend the boys for their resiliency in the end. They just refused to lose,” said NU coach Eric Altamirano, whose wards trailed by 11 points early on.

    “In the early part of the game, we kind of forced the issue and lost our discipline. But come the third quarter, we got our acts together and got back to where we’re really strong at – defense – so I think it came down to making stops in the end,” he added.

    Facing a 48-54 deficit, the Bulldogs shackled the Warriors and fired nine unanswered points in a three-minute stretch, making the most out of their offensive rebounding to turn the game around and seize a 57-54 margin going to the last 2:15.

    UE, which trimmed the NU lead to two at 55-57 on a split by Roi Sumang, still had the chance to go for an equalizer or even a game-winner having ball possession with 17.1 seconds left. Sumang drove past Nico Javelona but found Aroga waiting underneath to challenge his up-and-under shot that missed the mark. Aroga picked up the rebound as NU supporters who included former star Bobby Ray Parks, Jr. celebrated.

    “We knew they were going to Sumang. Of course, we didn’t want to give up a three, at least we can give up a two but we wanted to contain him really well, force him to one side where we know there will be help coming and true enough, Alfred was there to help up Javelona on the drive,” Altamirano said.

    Glenn Khobuntin added 14 points plus eight rebounds and two assists and Troy Rosario came up with 11 markers and five boards to complement Aroga.

    Bong Galanza and Sumang shot 16 apiece for the Warriors, who fell to their third straight loss after a 2-0 start. Charles Mammie and Moustapha Arafat went scoreless in their matchup with Aroga.

    In the second game, Kiefer Ravena uncorked 12 of his 23 points in the payoff period to power Ateneo to an 81-78 victory over Far Eastern U and solo second with 4-1.

    Taking charge in the crunch, Ravena knocked in a fadeaway jumper, a booming trey and two freethrows in succession to give the Blue Eagles a 75-66 cushion going to the last 1:15. The cagers from Katipunan hung tough in the face of a searing fightback by the Tams with Ravena’s split restoring a three-point spread with 2.4 seconds left.

    Mike Tolomia launched a Hail Mary shot from near centercourt that hit the glass and didn’t go in, leading to FEU’s second setback in five games for a share of fourth with La Salle.
    FRIENDS LANG KAMI

  8. #8
    Aroga stands tall for red-hot Bulldogs

    (philstar.com) |

    Updated August 4, 2014 - 10:31am

    MANILA, Philippines -- National University Alfred Aroga may be capable of dominating a game, but that's not what the Cameroonian center has in mind for the Bulldogs to succeed in the UAAP men's basketball tournament.

    “As far as I'm concerned, I can't talk like an individual player because everything that matters is the team,” said Aroga, “We're just playing as a team and we don't care about our stats. We just care about helping each other being better.”

    But Aroga, named as the UAAP Press Corps-Accel Quantum Plus/316 Player of the Week, has shown how big he has been for the team.

    Last Sunday, Aroga came through on both ends as the Bulldogs escaped the University of the East Red Warriors, 57-55, to grab the solo lead with a 5-1 record.

    The 6-foot-7 Cameroonian center buried the Bulldogs' final bucket with over two minutes left, before stepping up on the defensive end in the dying seconds, where he forced UE guard Roi Sumang to miss a driving layup that would have extended the game.

    Aroga finished with a double-double of 18 points and 15 rebounds on top of two assists and a block.

    “He gives us that inside presence, especially in rebounding,” said NU coach Eric Altamirano. “He gave us 15 rebounds. More than the points, his rebounds are very important.”

    Aroga also had 10 boards to go with six points, three assists and six of the team's 10 blocks in the Bulldogs' 37-point crushing of the Adamson Falcons, 62-25, last Wednesday.

    “I just did my best in trying to execute what coach wanted me to do,” said Aroga.

    Aroga edged Ateneo's Kiefer Ravena and Far Eastern University's Mark Belo for the weekly citation backed by Bactigel hand sanitizer, Doctor J Mighty Alcohol and Mighty Mom Anti-bacteria.

    More than earning individual honors, Aroga said he wants to focus on sustaining the success of the Bulldogs, who were hardly seen as contenders following the departure of two-time Most Valuable Player Bobby Ray Parks.

    “Each game, a different person comes out as player of the game,” said Aroga. “It's not all about a single player here. It's about the team.”
    FRIENDS LANG KAMI

  9. #9
    Big cage week for National U

    By Jasmine W. Payo |

    Philippine Daily Inquirer 3:12 am |

    Tuesday, August 5th, 2014

    National University surprisingly dominated both the UAAP men and women’s basketball just a week before the first round of the eliminations wraps up.

    The unbeaten Lady Bulldogs rolled to their fifth straight victory after whipping Far Eastern University, 56-40, in women’s action over the weekend at Blue Eagle Gym in Quezon City.

    Kristine Abriam fired 16 points and Afril Bernardino posted a double-double of 12 points and 10 rebounds to power NU.
    Defending champion La Salle joined the Lady Bulldogs on top at 5-0 by downing rival Ateneo, 48-39, behind Cass Santos and Trisha Piatos.

    The Bulldogs also claimed the solo top spot with a 5-1 record in the men’s tournament.

    Cameroonian center Alfred Aroga, named as the UAAP Press Corps-Accel Quantum Plus/316 Player of the Week, came up with big plays both in the Bulldogs’ 37-point blasting of Adamson, 62-25, and in their heart-stopping escape over University of the East, 57-55.

    “I can’t talk like an individual player because everything that matters is the team,” said Aroga, who averaged 11.5 points, 10 rebounds and 2.2 blocks in six games.

    Even in juniors volleyball, the Bullpups shared the early lead with the 10-time champion Junior Warriors at 3-0.

    The Junior Warriors drubbed La Salle Zobel, 25-12, 25-18, 25-17, and overwhelmed tournament newcomer FEU-Diliman, 25-17, 25-7, 25-13, in the boys’ division.

    The Bullpups stretched their perfect run by tripping University of Santo Tomas, 24-26, 25-16, 25-22, 26-24, and University of the Philippines, 25-12, 25-16, 25-19.

    In girls’ action, defending champion UST clipped Adamson, 25-20, 25-21, 25-22, for its second straight triumph.

  10. #10
    Tams collar Bulldogs; Maroons end 2-year skid

    By Jasmine W. Payo |

    Philippine Daily Inquirer

    4:37 am | Sunday, August 10th, 2014

    CARL Bryan Cruz emerged as a surprise spark as Far Eastern University spoiled National University’s bid to grab the solo top spot with a 71-62 victory in the UAAP men’s basketball tournament yesterday at Mall of Asia Arena.

    The Tamaraws’ rise, though, failed to match the aftershocks that followed University of the Philippines’ first win this season—and in 27 games spanning two years.

    Mikee Reyes and JR Gallarza carried the past equally hapless Adamson, 77-64, in the earlier game, which generated greater public reaction especially over social media (See related story on Page A1).

    Cruz unloaded 13 of his 16 points in the first half where the Tamaraws surprisingly erected a 20-point advantage, 42-22, before fending off the Bulldogs’ comeback attempt in the final quarter.

    “It was the most crucial game for us because if we lost this game, we’ll be in the middle of the pack,” said FEU coach Nash Racela after the Tamaraws climbed to a share of third at 4-2.

    “The players knew how important the game was. From the beginning, the focus was there and the effort was there.”

    The Maroons pulled away early with Gallarza firing 18 of his 24 points in the first half, before Reyes took over to finish with a career-high 28 points and doom the Falcons to their sixth straight loss.

    “We worked so hard this season, we just couldn’t get it going until today,” said Gallarza after the Maroons triumphed for the first time in two years despite the absence of head coach Rey Madrid.

    Madrid missed the Maroons’ breakthrough win as he served the last of a two-game suspension for accusing the referees of match fixing.

    “We really wanted this game,” said Reyes, who fueled a third-quarter outburst where the Maroons led by as many as 24 points, 60-36. “We felt that this is the game we can get a win.”

    Achie Iñigo also delivered for the Tamaraws with 14 points, missing only once in five attempts, aside from dishing out three assists.

    The Bulldogs, who held FEU stars Mac Belo and Mike Tolomia below their usual numbers, ended their first round with a 5-2 record to fall behind Ateneo, which has a 5-1 record.

    “That has always been the emphasis—we should be unpredictable,” said Racela. “If they (opponents) focus on one or two players, other players should be able to step forward.”

    Tolomia hit four crucial points in the endgame, before finishing with 10 on a poor 4-of-15 shooting clip. Belo had nine points, seven rebounds and a key block on Troy Rosario down the stretch.

    The scores:

    First Game

    UP 77—Reyes 28, Gallarza 24, Lao 10, Asilum 4, Juruena 4, Lim 2, Moralde 2, Gingerich 2, Amar 1, Vito 0, Harris 0.

    ADAMSON 64—Trollano 24, Rios 20, Monteclaro 5, Nalos 4, Iñigo 3,Villanueva 3, Bayran 2, Ochea 2, Polican 1, Aquino 0, Barrera 0, Garcia 0, Pedrosa 0.

    Quarters: 17-13, 40-32, 64-46, 77-64

    Second Game

    FEU 71—Cruz 16, Iñigo 14, Tolomia 10, Belo 9, Jose 6, Pogoy 6, Tamsi 5, Hargrove 5, Dennison 0, Escoto 0, Delfinado 0, Ugsang 0.

    NU 62—Alolino 13, Khobuntin 9, Javelona 8,Betayene 7, Diputado 7, Neypes 6, Rosario 6, Aroga 4, Atangan 2, Alejandro 0, Celda 0, Perez 0.

    Quarters: 21-16, 42-22, 55-42, 71-62


 
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