Miguel, UP make statement with stunning sweep of NU

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Feb 13, 2016 12:42 PM
Miguel, UP make statement with stunning sweep of NU
LOUD AND CLEAR. The Maroons upset the Bulldogs to stake their claim to contention.

Even after they pulled off their biggest win in five years and biggest upset thus far in the UAAP 78 Men’s Basketball Tournament, coach Rod Palmero kept it low-key.

“Napaghandaan lang talaga namin ng todo-todo,” he told reporters with just the littlest hint of a smile on his face.

Indeed, he had his boys prepared on Saturday at the San Juan Arena as the University of the Philippines dominated reigning runners-up National University in straight sets, 25-19, 25-20, 31-29.

The Fighting Maroons were clearly the more eager team as they handily took the first two sets. The Bulldogs finally got unleashed in the third set and were up 20-14 until UP fought back to even things at 22-all.

The two teams traded points until a service error put the Maroons at match point, 30-29. NU then called a timeout only to witness Nic Consuelo’s service ace put an end to the proceedings.

Consuelo had nine points to his name, but it was Wendel Miguel’s starring turn of 19 markers that clearly stood out in UP’s second straight win after a season-opening loss. After five years of missing out on the Final Four, the Diliman-based squad now find themselves tied for first-place.

James Natividad had 15 points, but 32 errors proved costly for the Bulldogs who suffered their first setback of the season. Even with the loss though, they are still tied for first-place.

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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