Players Who Delivered in UAAP Season 82 Men’s Basketball
ABS-CBN Sports on Oct 05, 2019 06:07 PM
UE's Rey Suerte was among a few UAAP Season 82 men's basketball players who delivered the goods when it mattered the most.
The 82nd Season of the UAAP Men's Basketball Tournament has proven how crazy competitive each game could get and there were players who delivered the goods when it mattered most.
In the first round alone, seven games have been won by a solitary point while two contests ended up in overtime.
Just like Domino’s Pizza's impressive delivery service, these individuals stood out from the rest of the pack.
ADAMSON's Lenda Douanga
Adamson was well on its way to its worst start to the season in the Franz Pumaren era - until Lenda Douanga unleashed his secret weapon.
With the Soaring Falcons down by two, 81-83, to National U with 1.2 ticks to go on the clock in overtime, Douanga took the inbound from Jerom Lastimosa and then took the triple that took just about everybody by surprise.
Not long after, the ball swished the net and allowed Adamson to avoid back-to-back losses to open its campaign - something that has not happened, and has still yet to happen, with multi-titled mentor Pumaren calling the shots.
And it was all thanks to their Congolese big man who put them on his broad shoulders and delivered the goods.
UE's Rey Suerte
As they say, it’s sometimes better to be lucky than good.
UE started the season with three losses and in a row, but in its fourth outing, looked like it was finally breaking through, as it outworked and outplayed La Salle for majority of their matchup.
Only, the Green Archers rallied late and registered a two-point edge, 85-83, in the last 13 seconds.
Fortunately for the Red Warriors, Rey Suerte was there to stand as the last line of defense against the uprising.
The one-and-done swingman took matters into his own hands and took the game-winning triple over three defenders.
And with that shot, Suerte delivered the goods - in this case, win no. 1 - for the faithful over at Recto who have long been yearning for a big-time win.
UST's Rhenz Abando
UST was just about to become the first victims of National U in the season, but Rhenz Abando came to the rescue for the Growling Tigers.
The talented transferee from Philippine College of Science and Technology in Pangasinan scored 13 of his 21 points in the fourth quarter and then the extra period.
None of his points were bigger than his two triples in the last two minutes of regulation to force overtime and then once there, another two treys to seal the deal in UST's come-from-behind win.
And so, just when the Growling Tigers were down for the count, Abando was there to deliver the goods and deny the Bulldogs from pulling off an upset.
UP's Juan Gomez de Liano
Nothing at all was going right for UP in its matchup opposite La Salle.
In fact, the Fighting Maroons trailed the Green Archers for 96.7 percent of the game and only got to tie the tally in the last minute.
Still, when the two teams were all even, it was State U which made all the right plays - and specifically, Juan Gomez de Liano made all the right plays, first intercepting Aljun Melecio's lead pass to Kurt Lojera and then putting the burden on his shoulders to decide the game.
The third-year standout did just that, dribbling to just behind the arc and then drilling the game-winning triple that granted UP its first lead of the game.
And in the end, Juan GDL delivered to the Fighting Maroons their fourth win in a row as well as their fifth win in the first round - their best start to the season in years.
LA SALLE's Aljun Melecio
Aljun Melecio would have had two game-winners for La Salle already - if only Rey Suerte and Juan Gomez de Liano didn't have other plans.
It was the pint-sized playmaker who gave the Green Archers the lead late in their games against UE and UP before Suerte and Juan GDL took it all back.
Melecio, however, was also a big part of a game-winning sequence - even though the big-time basket was not his.
Looking down at a one-point deficit, 81-82, with 28.1 second left in its contest with National U, the fourth-year guard found Kurt Lojera with a good look near the baseline.
Lojera wasted no time taking and making what proved to be the game-winner, but it wouldn't have been possible if not for Melecio's set-up, delivering the right play at the right place at the right time.
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