THE POKER-FACED ASSASSIN: Mac Belo’s biggest hits
ABS-CBN Sports on Nov 23, 2015 03:50 PM
COLD AS ICE: For two consecutive seasons, FEU's Mac Belo has eliminated a team from the Final Four at the buzzer
Two straight seasons, two teams, two shots, thousands of broken hearts.
FEU’s Mac Belo has been the Tamaraws’ quiet go-to-guy for the past couple of seasons now, and for those last two seasons, the North Cotabato native has sent a team packing from the Final Four with a heartbreaking dagger at the buzzer.
Join us for a quick trip back in time, as we take a look at arguably the two biggest baskets in “The Poker-faced Assassin’s” UAAP career!
SEASON 77 vs. DLSU
In the Final Four of UAAP Season 77, second-seed FEU took on then-defending champions and third-seed DLSU, with the Tams holding a twice-to-beat advantage. FEU had defeated DLSU thrice during the season (twice in the eliminations, once to determine seeding), but during the semis, the defending champs came to play.
DLSU blasted FEU in the first game, 94-73 to force a do-or-die game. In the decider, things were knotted up with 24 seconds left, and FEU’s Mike Tolomia had the ball in his hands.
In the words of TJ Manotoc, “panalo o tabla.”
With about ten seconds left, Tolomia charged in, and with two defenders collapsing on him, he found a wide open Belo for the backbreaker three to send the defending champions home.
SEASON 78 vs. Ateneo
Again, FEU found themselves sitting at the second seed after eliminations, and this time around, they were matched up with third-seed Ateneo. Again, the Tams had a twice-to-beat advantage, and again, they had beaten Ateneo twice during the eliminations.
Seniors Kiefer Ravena and Von Pessumal, as well as rookie Adrian Wong did all in their power to force a deciding game, and like all dramatic contests, this one went down the wire. With just seconds left, the game was tied at 74.
Again, in a similar situation, it was Tolomia who had the ball with five seconds left, but this time, Tolomia took matters into his own hands and went for a reverse lay-in that missed.
Never fear, Mac Belo is here.
With a second left, and the ball free for the taking, Belo scored the putback just in the nick of time, leaving the Ateneo crowd stunned and sending the Blue Eagles home.
Mac Belo and the FEU Tamaraws will face off against the UST Tigers in this season’s Finals. Does “The Poker-faced Assassin” have any more big shots left in his last few games left in the UAAP? We’ll find out soon enough.
The UAAP Season 78 Finals between the UST Tigers and the FEU Tamaraws begin on Wednesday, November 25 at 2:30 PM! Catch it LIVE on ABS-CBN Sports+Action 23, BALLS HD 195, and sports.abs-cbn.com/livestream/uaap