The University of the Philippines showcased its enviable depth, pushing forward despite an injury to floor leader Jun Manzo before putting away University of Sto. Tomas, 89-72, Friday at Filoil Flying V Centre.
Akhuetie imposed his will down low for a 17-point, 16-rebound double-double while Kobe Paras also added 14 markers of his own as the Fighting Maroons raised their record to 5-2 in the 2019 Filoil Flying V Preseason Tournament.
Juan Gomez de Liano got going as well with an all-around 10 points, six rebounds, and four assists as Jaydee Tungcab and David Murrell had much welcome contributions with eight markers each.
That total team effort was what State U leaned on to take control from start to finish.
They did this, even as Manzo incurred a right ankle sprain in the second quarter. Head coach Bo Perasol was also not in the venue while Ricci Rivero was not in uniform.
While they improved to 5-2 as they end their elimination round assignments and moved well within the top four, UP will not be advancing to the quarterfinals as they are now bound for overseas training in US, Taiwan, and Serbia.
For the Growling Tigers, Rhenz Abando led the effort with 24 points and eight rebounds while Beninise reinforcement Soulemane Chabi Yo also added 23 markers and 10 boards.
Missing key cogs Sherwin Concepcion, Marvin Lee, and Mark Nonoy, though, they were unable to keep up with their opponents’ depth and dropped to 1-4.
Meanwhile, Far Eastern University charged to its fourth consecutive victory at the expense of College of St. Benilde, 70-57.
Hubert Cani and Wendell Comboy showed the way with the former finishing with 12 points, four assists, and four rebounds and the latter ending with 11 markers and eight boards.
Cameroonian tower Patrick Tchuente and Barkley Ebona then brought much welcome energy and merged for 17 points, 15 rebounds, six blocks, two steals, and two assists to help the Tamaraws improve to 4-2.
Justin Gutang paced the now 1-4 Blazers with 22 points and four rebounds.
FEU 70 - Cani 12, Comboy 11, Stockton 9, Ebona 9, Tchuente 8, Nunag 6, Tuffin 5, Bienes 5, Gloria 3, Mantua 2, Roman 0, Dulatre 0
CSB 57 - Gutang 22, Pasturan 11, Dixon 10, Javillonar 7, Lepalam 3, Flores 3, Naboa 1, Young 0, Lim 0, Nayve 0
QUARTER SCORES: 14-10, 27-28, 50-47, 70-57
UP 89 - Akhuetie 17, Paras 15, Gomez de Liano Ju 10, Tungcab 8, Murrell 8, Spencer 7, Manzo 7, Webb 6, Prado 5, Jaboneta 3, Gomez de Liano Ja 3, Gob 0
UST 72 - Abando 24, Chabi Yo 23, Ando 9, Subido 6, Paraiso 5, Tarranza 3, Cosejo 2, Bataller 0, Huang 0, Pangilinan 0, Bordeos 0, Marcos 0, Talampas 0
QUARTER SCORES: 28-21, 43-37, 67-58, 89-72
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