Still spotless DLSU clips Adamsonís wings anew

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Oct 09, 2016 07:29 PM
Still spotless DLSU clips Adamsonís wings anew
CHECK YOUR BALANCE. Ben Mbala was once again big-time, but it was Kib Montalbo who brought the biggest of baskets for DLSU.

De La Salle University was in control for the majority of their matchup on Sunday at the MOA Arena, but just couldn’t keep daring Adamson University off their backs.

Kib Montalbo put a stop to all that as his triple immediately followed by standout defense provided the finishing touches in the Green Archers’ 86-79 triumph over the upstart Soaring Falcons that keeps them perfect in the UAAP 79 Men’s Basketball Tournament.

The league-leaders had a nine-point advantage in the middle of the final frame until their offense went into hibernation. Adamson was only willing to take advantage and closed to 79-81 with 1:26 remaining.

Coach Aldin Ayo sued for time to talk to his team and off it, DLSU executed to perfection with Montalbo breaking free care of Ben Mbala’s screen and then launching a wide open three from Ricci Rivero’s assist. “That was big. Good thing we executed on that sideline play,” coach Aldin Ayo expressed post-game.

The same cannot be said for the Falcons who called their own timeout only to see Nikko Paranada fail to locate Jerrick Ahanmisi and throw the ball away. Montalbo was all over Ahanmisi then.

Two free throws by Mbala and another defensive stop later, the Archers finished the job on their eighth consecutive victory to start the season.

Adamson actually started strong and claimed a two-point lead after the opening salvo. Come the second quarter, however, the hardcourt became a runway for DLSU and a collection of throwdowns from Mbala, Rivero, and Abu Tratter fueled the 23-9 liftoff that brought them ahead, 40-28.

The Archer advantage bloated to as much as 17 points in the third courtesy of Rivero who poured in all but three of his 14 points in the quarter.

Mbala had another double-double of 18 points and 10 rebounds, also his eighth in a row, while Montalbo added eight markers of his own to help overcome the absence of team captain Jeron Teng who is still sidelined by a foot injury.

For the Falcons, it was Jerrick Ahanmisi who fronted the losing effort with 27 points. Unable to wrap up their rally, however, they dropped to 4-4.

BOX SCORES

DLSU 86 – Mbala 18, Rivero 14, Melecio 11, Torres 9, Montalbo 8, Tratter 7, Perkins 5, Caracut 4, Baltazar 4, Paraiso 2, Dyke 2, Sargent 2, Go 0

ADAMSON 79 – Ahanmisi 27, Sarr 13, Manganti 12, Espeleta 9, Bernardo 6, Manalang 3, Ochea 3, Mustre 3, Ng 3, Paranada 0, Camacho 0, Pasturan 0, Ballon 0, Tungcab 0, Barrera 0, Chua 0

QUARTER SCORES: 17-19, 44-33, 66-55, 86-79

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