Soaring Falcons closing in on outright semis seat
ABS-CBN Sports on Mar 22, 2018 06:15 PM
Akari-Adamson needs just one more win to claim an automatic advance into the Final Four
Akari-Adamson University now has one foot into the semifinals, routing University of Perpetual Help, 101-83 Thursday in the 2018 PBA D-League Aspirants’ Cup at the Ynares Arena in Pasig.
Egie Boy Mojica accounted for nine of the Falcons’ 31-point fourth quarter blast as he caught fire from downtown and shot 5-of-6 from threes to wound up with 15 points and three rebounds.
Papi Sarr top-scored for Akari-Adamson with 16 markers and six boards, while Sean Manganti almost nabbed a triple-double with his statline of 14 points, nine rebounds, seven assists, and three steals.
Jerrick Ahanmisi contributed 14 markers, four boards, and four dimes while Jerom Lastimosa got 14.
That all-out attack from the Falcons in the final frame allowed them to swing a close 70-67 lead to a decisive 18-point victory, with them waxing hot from beyond the arc with a collective 10-of-20 sniping.
“We became aggressive. We we’re to lax early on,” said coach Franz Pumaren as Akari-Adamson joined league leader Centro Escolar University on top at 8-3.
More importantly, a victory for the Falcons in their final game against Jose Rizal University on April 5 will secure them one of the two outright semifinals seats.
“We’ve been stressing to the players that each game is important for us. I don’t want to sound like a hypocrite that we don’t want the top two because we do want that scenario. But we acknowledge that it’s hard to play a team that is out of the playoffs in JRU,” said the veteran mentor.
Edgar Charcos dropped 22 points, 10 assists, and two rebounds for Perpetual while Prince Eze and Kim Aurin combined for 30 markers and 10 rebounds.
The Altas’ chances might be bleak, but their 3-6 card is still enough to keep them in the running for a potential quarterfinals spot.
AKARI-ADAMSON 101 — Sarr 16, Mojica 15, Ahanmisi 14, Lastimosa 14, Manganti 14, Catapusan 8, Espeleta 7, Macion 6, Camacho 5, Bernardo 2, Lojera 0, Longalong 0, Zaldivar 0.
PERPETUAL 83 — Charcos 22, Aurin 15, Eze 15, Coronel 11, Tamayo 7, Mangalino 3, Precillas 3, Villanueva 3, Pasia 2, Peralta 2, Pido 0, Tiburcio 0.
QUARTER SCORES: 22-20, 50-39, 70-67, 101-83.