Tolentino gets career-high in FEU’s first win run in season

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Sep 27, 2017 04:17 PM
Tolentino gets career-high in FEU’s first win run in season
CHARGE. Arvin Tolentino and FEU are off to their first winning streak in the season.

Just as slowly but surely, Arvin Tolentino is looking like the prized recruit he once was, Far Eastern University is also, slowly but surely, looking like a more than capable contender in the UAAP 80 Men’s Basketball Tournament.

Dropping a career-best 23 points, Tolentino carried the Tamaraws right past National University for a 90-83 decision on Wednesday at the Araneta Coliseum.

After starting the season with only one win to show to go along with losses to heavy favorites De La Salle University and Ateneo de Manila University, the Morayta-based squad is now streaking for the first time.

With a 3-2 record, they break free from the four-way logjam and barge into solo fourth. “I like the way the boys continued to put in the effort in practice despite our bad start in the first three games,” head coach Olsen Racela said.

FEU took charge right from tip-off as their talented transferee had 13 points in the first half alone. There, he showcased the skills that at one time made him a blue-chip recruit out of high school as well as former Rookie of the Year.

With the Bulldogs threatening at 81-86 early in the final frame, it was still Tolentino who made good on a slash and score that kept them at bay once and for all. “It was a hard-fought win. We’ll be playing three games in one week so we needed this win badly,” Racela said.

In the end, the sweet-shooting big man converted 3-of-8 threes and also collared six rebounds.

Axel Inigo and Barkley Ebona chipped in 12 and 10 points, respectively, of their own.

The Tamaraw defense wasn’t so bad either as it stopped run and gun NU and only allowed 12 points in transition. “Ang priority namin today is defense. I think limiting them to 83 is quite an achievement,” their mentor said.

For the Bulldogs, J-Jay Alejandro did his all to make things interesting with 23 points, five rebounds, four assists, and two steals.

Still missing much-needed help from the other guys, however, he saw his team drop back-to-back losses and drop down to a 2-3 standing.

BOX SCORES

FEU 90 – Tolentino 23, Inigo 12, Ebona 10, Comboy 9, Parker 9, Tuffin 7, Dennison 6, Orizu 6, Cani 5, Escoto 3, Ramirez 0

NU 83 – Alejandro 23, Aquino 13, Gaye 8, Yu 7, Morido 7, Salem 6, Mosqueda 6, Bartlett 4, Lastimosa 3, Joson 2, Abatayo 2, Rangel 2, Tibayan 0, Diputado 0, Flores 0, Cauilan 0

QUARTER SCORES: 22-15, 48-41, 76-68, 90-83

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