OLONGAPO CITY – Enderun Colleges continued to impress in its maiden campaign by grabbing the solo leadership of the 16th National Athletic Association of Schools, Colleges and Universities (NAASCU) by tripping AMA University, 95-91, at the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority Gym Saturday (September 17). The Taguig City-based squad earned their eighth win against a solitary loss to take a half-game lead over Saint Clare College of Caloocan, the same team that gave them that loss.
AMA rode the crest of eight unanswered points to lead early in the third period, 61-58. However, Enderun responded with Michael de la Cruz connecting on triples and with help from Joshua Grilli and Mark Joseph Nunez seized back control entering the final period, 80-68.
Refusing to quit, Jason Riley presided over a strong AMA comeback with Riley’s free throws at the 25-second mark cutting the deficit to only three markers, 89-92. However, Enderun skipper Christian Errol Villar and Mark Javen Gatdula capped their fine performances by connecting on pressure-packed charities in the crunch to up their lead, 95-89, and seven seconds to play before AMA’s Miguel Magpantay scored on a late layup for the final count.
Villar nearly notched a rare triple double with 12 points, 12 rebounds and nine assists to cop Best Player honors. He beat out Gatdula who had 20 points and 10 rebounds and de la Cruz whose 18 points all came from the three-point line.
Daniel Salonga paced AMA with 19 points but was held to a lone free throw in the fourth period. Riley had a double-double of 17 points and 11 assists.
Despite the loss, AMA remained in contention with a 3-7 win-loss card. They face the daunting task of sweeping their remaining games against Our Lady of Fatima University, Philippine Merchant Marine School and Colegio de San Lorenzo to have chance at the eight-team playoff round.
How They Scored:
ENDERUN (95) – Gatdula 20, de la Cruz 18, Vidal 16, Villar 12, Nunez 10, Kaptue 10, Grilli 5, Bernardo 4, Dungan 0, Turingan 0.
A M A (91) – Salonga 19, Riley 17, Calma 15, Ortega 13, Jordan 12, Magpantay 8, Carpio 3, Pineda 2, Quijano 2, Macaranas 0, Dulnoan 0, Pippin 0, Macaspac 0.
Period Scores: 24-22, 49-46, 80-68, 95-91.