Daquioag’s career-high puts Tigers at first to end Round 1
Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Oct 07, 2015 04:51 PM
WOW FACTOR. Ed Daquioad delivered both the highlights and the big shots as UST ended the first round atop the leaderboard.
At the close of the first round of the UAAP 78 Men’s Basketball Tournament, there is no doubt that the veterans define the identity of University of Sto. Tomas. First, it was Ed Daquioag. Then it was Kevin Ferrer.
It was only logical that next up was Karim Abdul, especially against a short University of the East frontline.
But no, Daquioag took the spotlight all for himself once more by pouring in a career-best 34 points on Wednesday at the Araneta Coliseum as the Growling Tigers warded off the Red Warriors, 83-76.
UST cruised to a lead of as much as 16 in the first half until the Warriors amped up the defensive pressure and got to as close as 56-58 late in the third. Daquioag and Marvin Lee had the answer for the Tigers as they teamed up for a 12-7 blast that pushed their advantage back to a more comfortable seven points, 63-70, at the midway mark of the fourth.
Still, UE kept coming and were again only behind by a basket, 71-73, inside the last two minutes before Daquioag and Lee again merged for half of the points in UST’s 8-3 finishing kick. All in all, Daquioag scored 12 of his total in the final frame to lead the Tigers in securing the top spot at 7-1 entering the second round.
“’Di na ako nagugulat kay Ed. Natural na sakin performances niya,” coach Bong Dela Cruz said in his post-game conference
The Warriors lost their fourth in a row coming from a 2-1 record despite the best efforts of Paul Varilla who ended with 25 points.
UST 83 – Daquioag 34, Ferrer 14, Vigil 14, Abdul 9, Sheriff 5, Lee 5, Lao 2, Abdurassad 0, Bonleon 0, Caunan 0, Faundo 0, Garrido 0, Subido 0
UE 76 – Varilla 25, Javier 12, De Leon 8, Palma 8, Batiller 5, Charcos 5, Sta. Ana 4, Abanto 3, Derige 2, Gagate 2, Manalang 2, Gonzales 0, Penuela 0, Yu 0
QUARTER SCORES: 26-12, 44-33, 60-56, 83-76
Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.