OLONGAPO CITY – Our Lady of Fatima University dodged another bullet at the right time and survived New Era University, 70-52, in continuing action from the 16th National Athletic Association of Schools, Colleges and Universities (NAASCU) at the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority Gym Saturday (September 17). The Phoenix averted another late game meltdown as New Era proved to be a tough customer.
Taking a 30-15 lead in the second period, the Phoenix were coasting to the win when New Era staged a mighty rally in the third behind Marc Cabacungan and Keanu Asistio to trim their deficit to only four points entering the final period, 41-45. However, Fatima unleashed a crippling 13-0 Fatima run to begin the final period from which New Era never recovered, 58-41.
Miguel Bryan Cabrera, Joseph, Marquez, John Rovin Datu and AJ Perea took turns at sending the Phoenix to their biggest lead, 68-45. Our Lady of Fatima now assumed solo Third Place with their seventh win in 10 games.
Cabrera bagged back-to-back Best Player awards with 19 points on five of seven shooting from three-point distance. Marquez added 14 points, five rebounds, four assists and three steals.
Cabacungan led New Era with 14 points and nine rebounds, the only player in twin digits. Clyde Reyes was next with only nine points as the team now faces the tough task of sweeping their remaining three games against top-tier squads Lyceum of Subic Bay, Enderun Colleges and Saint Clare College of Caloocan to have shot at making the eight-team playoffs.
How They Scored:
OUR LADY OF FATIMA (70) – Cabrera 19, Marquez 14, Juanico 10, Datu 9, Perea 8, Pedrosa 5, Essomba 5, Albano 0, Bargola 0, Bacay 0, Penafiel 0, Japzon 0.
NEW ERA (52) – Cabacungan 14, Reyes 9, Velchez 7, Perez 5, Castillo 5, Akindele 4, Asistio 4, Magkalas 2, Roque 2, Macaranas 0, Absin 0, Bringas 0, de la Cruz 0.
Period Scores: 24-11, 37-23, 45-41, 70-52.