UP fights, finally wins at expense of luckless UE

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Sep 21, 2016 04:48 PM
UP fights, finally wins at expense of luckless UE
FINALLY. UP moved out of the bottom of the standings following a thrilling win over UE.

There remains only one winless team in the UAAP 79 Men’s Tournament – and it’s not the University of the Philippines.

Graduating guard Jett Manuel Lim came through in the clutch and the Maroons not only fought, but also won against the University of the East, 75-71, on Wednesday at the MOA Arena.

“It’s kind of cliché, but there’s always a light at the end of the tunnel,” a bright and beaming coach Bo Perasol said in his first post-win interview through four games in the tournament.

In a close contest featuring 10 ties and nine lead changes, it was Manuel who scored on a tough jumper in what proved to be the go-ahead basket. Asked how he was feeling, he answered, “Very emotional right now. Down three games and in my final year, I believe that there is still light at the end of the tunnel.”

He then continued, “We are going to enjoy this win.”

Indeed, UP has much to celebrate after battling back from as much as 11 points down early and then making all the plays in the endgame. “There’s nothing spectacular about what we did. We just played simple basketball,” Perasol said.

He then continued, “We practice well all the time so our challenge is to transfer everything we practice into the game.”

The Red Warriors had a couple of chances to again tie the tally after Manuel’s make, but Bonbon Batiller muffed on his triple and in the ensuing rebounding play, Philip Manalang saved the ball to a teammate who was already out of bounds.

Dave Moralde then made good on both of his free throws to put the cherry on top of the sweet, sweet icing in the cake for State U.

Manuel wound up with 17 points while Paul Desiderio added a 17-point, 10-rebound double-double for the now 1-3 and seventh-place Maroons. “Malaking bagay ‘to kasi naiisip naming kung mag-0-14 ba kami. Ngayon, iisipin na lang namin is yung susunod na laro,” Perasol said.

On the other hand, UE stayed out of the win column after four tries. Mark Olayon fronted their losing effort with 15 points.

BOX SCORES

UP 75 – Manuel 17, Desiderio 17, Moralde 13, Gomez de Liano 7, Dario 7, Lim 5, Harris 4, Prado 2, Lao 2, Romero 0, Asilum 0, Webb 0, Longa 0

UE 71 – Olayon 15, Batiller 14, Abanto 11, Derige 9, Palma 9, Manalang 7, Charcos 4, Pasaol 2, Varilla 0, Bartolome 0, Gagate 0, Acuno 0, Penuela 0, De Leon 0, Larupay 0

QUARTER SCORES: 16-19, 34-37, 57-58, 75-71

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