Decade-long search ends as FEU seizes 20th championship
Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Dec 02, 2015 06:29 PM
LONG OVERDUE. The FEU Tamaraws outlasted the UST Growling Tigers in Game Three for their first title since 2005.
Mac Belo, RR Pogoy, and Mike Tolomia weren’t letting themselves go through another heartbreak.
Morayta’s Big Three provided all Far Eastern University needed to prevail over University of Sto. Tomas, 67-62, and claim the championship in the 78th Season of the UAAP Men’s Basketball Tournament.
With their Game Three win on Wednesday at the MOA Arena, the Tamaraws increased their league-record title total to 20. Coach Nash Racela, who celebrated his birthday last Monday, shared, “Sabi nila sa akin, ‘Coach, sa Wednesday na gift mo.’”
He then thankfully continued, “They delivered and it’s a good gift.”
Behind by six inside the last five minutes, Pogoy had four of five unanswered points that pulled the Tamaraws to 58-59 with 2:31 remaining. Following Kent Lao’s split from the line that gave UST a two-point lead, the Cebuano again fired a cold-blooded triple over the outstretched arms of Kevin Ferrer to front another 5-0 run that gave FEU a 63-60 advantage.
Ed Daquioag moved the Tigers within one, but the Tamaraws held them scoreless during the remaining 54 seconds while converting four charities.
Pogoy ended with 14 points, half coming in the last five minutes, while Belo had for himself 23 points and eight rebounds to also take home Finals MVP. Talking about the individual for his team captain, Racela said, “I think he will share it with his teammates.”
Daquioag topped the scoring column for UST with 21 points. Team captain Ferrer was on lockdown all game long and only had six points in his final collegiate contest.
Ferrer and Karim Abdul will be leaving the UAAP with 0-3 records in the Finals.
FEU 67 – Belo 23, Pogoy 14, Tolomia 13, Tamsi 6, Ru. Escoto 5, Inigo 3, Jose 2, Orizu 1, Arong 0, Dennison 0, Ri. Escoto 0, Trinidad 0.
UST 62 – Daquiaog 21, Abdul 12, Lee 9, Ferrer 6, Lao 6, Vigil 6, Bonleon 2, Faundo 0, Huang 0, Sheriff 0.
QUARTERSCORES: 18-19, 30-30, 51-46, 67-62.
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