UP, Manuel’s feel-good season gets bad ending at hands of UE

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Nov 13, 2016 04:20 PM
UP, Manuel’s feel-good season gets bad ending at hands of UE
OURS. UE avoided, and left no doubt in doing so, becoming the only team in the season to get swept by UP.

There has not been much to cheer about for the University of the East in the UAAP 79 Men’s Basketball Tournament.

For their last appearance, however, the Red Warriors pulled out all the stops in giving their fans all the reason to smile.

Bonbon Batiller and Philip Manalang saved their best for last and UE deflated the University of the Philippines with a convincing 80-67 victory on Sunday at the Araneta Coliseum.

The Warriors actually started slow and found themselves in a five-point hole until Manalang fronted a 27-10 push that suddenly sent them on top, 29-17. “Well, I think this is the best shooting night that we have had in a long while,” coach Derrick Pumaren expressed.

The Fighting Maroons then put up a fight and closed to within 26-31 only to be at the receiving end of a 25-5 tear that re-established a 56-31 advantage for UE at the midway mark of the third. “We played to our full potential today. Even though UP made a run, we still kept our poise and our energy was there,” Pumaren said.

State U didn’t give up just yet and Paul Desiderio’s five unanswered points pulled them to within 60-72 inside the last five minutes. Batiller and Manalang had the answer for the Warriors, however, and wrapped up only their third win in 13 games.

Talking about their mindset, Pumaren said, “We know that we’re out, but we still want to end the season with respect. That’s what the players showed tonight.”

Although now knotted with University of Sto. Tomas at 3-10, UE is already assured of the seventh spot whatever happens in its last assignment against Far Eastern University on Wednesday.

Batiller and Manalang scored 14 points apiece and the Warriors made a living in the paint with a huge 48-38 advantage in inside points.

Playing for the last time in their collegiate careers, Jett Manuel and Dave Moralde paced UP both with 13 points. Taking too long to get going, however, they witnessed their two-game winning streak come to an end.

Still, the Maroons finish the season with a 5-9 win-loss record – their best in a decade.

BOX SCORES

UE 80 - Batiller 14, Manalang 14, Palma 14, Pasaol 11, Bartolome 7, Varilla 6, Olayon 5, Derige 3, Abanto 2, Acuno 2, Gagate 2, Charcos 0.

UP 67 - Manuel 13, Moralde 13, Desiderio 12, Webb 6, Asilum 5, Gomez De Liano 5, Vito 5, Dario 3, Lao 2, Lim 2, Harris 1, Jaboneta 0, Prado 0.

QUARTER SCORES: 20-17, 42-28, 65-44, 80-67.

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