Falcons bolster bid for top two after adding to Bulldogs’ woes

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Nov 13, 2016 06:49 PM
Falcons bolster bid for top two, add to Bulldogs’ woes
HEAD-TO-HEAD. Adamson will challenge Ateneo for, in essence, the second-seed, on Wednesday.

Look out, the hottest teams in the UAAP 79 Men’s Basketball Tournament are on track for a collision course for the remaining twice-to-beat advantage in the playoffs.

Adamson University kept itself in the running for the playoff incentive with a fourth consecutive victory, this time coming at the expense of National University, 77-53, on Sunday at the Araneta Coliseum.

The Falcons got off the ground right from tip-off and soared into a 35-19 lead after the first two quarters. Papi Sarr and Jonathan Espeleta had 23 points all to themselves during that time and already outscored their opponents.

The upstarts didn’t let up from that point and only doubled down on their advantage to as much as 30, 75-45, late.

Sarr posted a 22-point, 15-rebound double-double to lead the way for Adamson. Wingmen Espeleta and Jaydee Tungcab added 15 and nine points, respectively.

Winners of four in a row, the now 8-5 Falcons will next take on second-running Ateneo de Manila University which has won all of their last five. At stake will essentially be the remaining twice-to-beat advantage.

“We needed this win. Like what I mentioned, we’re aiming to at least get a tie and at least get a shot at gaining that twice-to-beat advantage,” coach Franz Pumaren said.

Another win there and Adamson will be knotted with the Blue Eagles at 9-5. A loss, however, will grant the playoff incentive to Ateneo.

J-Jay Alejandro was the lone bright spot for NU with 15 points. After another putrid performance at the offensive end, however, they wrap up their campaign at 5-9 – their worst in the Eric Altamirano era.

BOX SCORES

ADAMSON 77 – Sarr 22, Espeleta 15, Tungcab 9, Manalang 8, Manganti 6, Ahanmisi 5, Paranada 5, Mustre 3, Camacho 2, Bernardo 2, Ochea 0, Pasturan 0, Ng 0, Chua 0

NU 53 – Alejandro 15, Aroga 9, Salem 8, Yu 6, Diputado R 5, Mosqueda 3, Morido 2, Salim 2, Rangel 2, Abatayo 1, Diputado C 0

QUARTER SCORES: 14-13, 35-19, 56-40, 77-53

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