La Salle dims UP’s bright hopes in Filoil Preseason

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Apr 21, 2018 06:55 PM
La Salle dims UP’s bright hopes in Filoil Preseason
La Salle was impressive in its first game under head coach Louie Gonzalez

Louie Gonzalez is a winner in his first big game as head coach of De La Salle University – and he and his boys sent out a strong statement while doing so.

Justine Baltazar and Santi Santillan were solid as expected, Taane Samuel and Brandon Bates had impressive debuts, and the Green Archers turned down the hype on the University of the Philippines, 82-79, on Saturday at the Filoil Flying V Centre.

Baltazar top-scored with 16 points on top of six rebounds, three assists, and two blocks all while fueling the pivotal 25-4 push bridging the third and fourth quarters that propelled the Taft-based team to a rousing start in the 2018 Filoil Flying V Preseason Cup.

The two teams were going at it in the first two quarters and found themselves all even at the half before Juan Gomez de Liano and Paul Desiderio shot the Fighting Maroons to a 50-41 lead early in the third quarter.

It was at that point, however, that Baltazar powered the 25-4 run that, all of a sudden, put La Salle on top, 66-54, early in the final frame.

Juan GDL and Desiderio kept coming and pulled State U to just down 79-80 with 3.1 ticks to go, but Samuel’s couple of charities sealed the deal once and for all for his team.

Samuel, the Green Archers’ Kiwi reinforcement, opened eyes in his first big game with 12 points and seven rebounds while fellow first-year player Filipino-Australian Bates had nine markers of his own.

Santillan also added nine points and six rebounds as the Taft towers connived to match UP powerhouse Bright Akhuetie who was hounded into 12 points, 15 rebounds, and seven turnovers. “They all delivered. Siyempre, si Samuel and si Brandon, they’ve been away from home so andami pa nilang adjustment, pero good thing, nag-deliver pa rin sila,” a beaming Gonzalez said.

Juan GDL paced the Fighting maroons with 21 points to go along with six assists and three rebounds while Diego Dario chipped in 16 markers.

Penciled in as one of the contenders, they begin the preseason on the wrong foot.

BOX SCORES

LA SALLE 82 – Baltazar 16, Samuel 12, Caracut 11, Santillan 9, Montalbo 9, Bates 9, Melecio 8, Corteza 4, Go 3, Dyke 1, Capacio 0

UP 79 – Gomez de Liano Ju 21, Dario 16, Akhuetie 12, Desiderio 9, Vito 8, Gomez de Liano Ja 7, Jaboneta 3, Manzo 2, Murrell 1, Prado 0, Tungcab 0, Gozum 0, Lim 0

QUARTER SCORES: 20-15, 36-36, 58-52, 82-79

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