UP shocks the UAAP, takes down the defending champions, FEU rampages in the fourth quarter over UST

FEU Tamaraws 78 – UST Growling Tigers 65

The FEU Tamaraws have struggled with inconsistency early this season. This showed in their game against the UST Growling Tigers. They needed a strong fourth quarter push to take over the game and beat the UST Growling Tigers to get their second win of Season 80.

The Tamaraws got off to a slow start, allowing UST to get hot from the perimeter. Back-to-back hits from the outside gave the Growling Tigers a 10-point lead early in the game. UST dropped 36 points on a porous FEU defense in the first quarter. FEU spent much of the game trying to overcome the early UST lead. The Tamaraws slowly chipped away at the lead and finally got their rhythm in the fourth quarter. They went on a 20-5 run that was sparked by Arvin Tolentino. The big man rained a three-pointer to start the final period to start the run. The rest of the Tamaraws tightened their defense as they forced turnovers and got out to running. Tolentino and Ron Dennison combined for 12 of FEU’s 29 points in the fourth quarter.

Tolentino led the Tamaraws with 15 points and 10 rebounds. Dennison also scored 15 points. Jasper Parker and Ken Tuffin combined for 16 points and four three-pointers. Jeepy Faundo acored 16 points to lead UST.

UP Fighting Maroons 98 – DLSU Green Archers 87

The La Salle Green Archers started the game in their usual dominant fashion. Ben Mbala continued to show off his newly acquired range as he hit four three-pointers in the first quarter alone. The rest of the team was pressing the UP Fighting Maroons hard, forcing turnovers and scoring on highlight plays on the other end. The Green Archers built a 12-point lead in the quarter and were poised to blow out another UAAP team.

The funny thing is, the Fighting Maroons never went anywhere. They stuck to the Green Archers and clawed their way back from the double-digit deficit. Rob Ricafort checked into the game in the second quarter, finally fulfilling his dream of playing in the UAAP. His energy helped spark the Fighting Maroons second quarter run. UP went on a quick 6-0 run to cut the lead down to two points and get back in the game. They tied the game on a Paul Desiderio four point play a few possessions later. UP finally took the lead when Juan Gomez De Liano found his brother Javi on the right corner for a three-pointer that gave them a one-point lead, 41-40. Ricafort scored on a scrappy fast break play near the end of the half to give UP a four-point lead, 47-43.

The third quarter was back and forth affair. La Salle would repeatedly threaten to retake the lead but UP’s outside shooting would stay on point. Every time the Green Archers would hit a big shot, the Fighting Maroons had an answer. The dam finally broke midway through fourth quarter. Jun Manzo hit s tough spinning lay-up to start the run. He followed it up with a gutsy pull-up three-pointer to further extend the lead. UP dropped a 7-0 run to seal the upset.

As a team, UP hit 16 shots from beyond the arc at a 45% clip. Paul Desiderio erupted for 30 points with six treys. Manzo scored 17 points and had four assists. The Gomez De Liano brothers combined for 20 points, 12 rebounds and four three-pointers.


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