By Gian Franco, Socio-Political Editor |
Pasay City, Manila— De La Salle U (1-1) gets its first win via 12-point lead over the last season’s cellar-dwellers University of the Philippines (0-2) in a comeback 96-84 victory in the UAAP Season 76 men’s basketball first round, Wednesday, at the Mall of Asia Arena.
The Green Archers erupted in the second half, led by rebounding maven Jason Perkins to pacify the Maroons with an astonishing 96-80 lead in the fourth quarter. The rookie registered 20 markers, 13 caroms. He also converted four of five on the line.
“We had first game jitters in our last game,” sophomore Green Archer forward Jeron Teng said, “We are still getting used to Coach Juno (Sauler)’s system.”
Teng finished with 20 points and 4 assists to make up with his low-game performance last week, where he only had 10 points for his team against the Season 75 finalist University of Sto. Tomas.
Teng, Thomas Torres and Almond Vosotros gunned an early 14-2 to cripple away the Maroons until Samuel Marata drained triple to at least slash the trail down to nine.
Marata sank in career-high 21 points and six rebounds for the Maroons while rookie Kyles Lao scored 18 points and Asilum added with 12 points. Lao was the first rookie to score in double-digits this season.
The high-spirited UP guard Renzar Asilum ignited three triples to tie the game at 44-all with a minute left in the first half. But the Taft-based squad came under pressure and exploded with 14-5 barrage on the rim to lift the second half, 61-49.
They came close to a 4-point margin after Asilum drained from beyond the arc to claim 78-74 who had 12 points early on the fourth quarter. Teng nudged back with a double to kick the team clutch 10-4 down the clock.
The too aggressive and hasty Diliman squad had nothing to do but to let Andres Desiderio cut in two points out from the bench on the last remaining seconds of the game to give up hopes on DLSU.
Quarters: 24-19, 48-44, 75-67, 96-84