SAN JUAN City – University of the Philippines rolled to its second win in a row in continuing action from the 11th FilOil Flying V Premier Cup Sunday (May 21) at the FilOil Flying V Centre. The Maroons made short work of College of Saint Benilde, 77-70, sending the Blazers skidding to their fourth straight loss.
Paul Desiderio, Jun Manzo and Rob Ricafort hit the big shots as UP pulled away from a 60-60 deadlock to build a solid 74-66 cushion with 1:32 to play. From there, the defense went to work with Desiderio and Javi Gomez de Liano securing the victory from the free throw line.
“We want our players to learn to play multiple positions because we are not the biggest team,” said Coach Bo Perasol. The Maroons survived the disqualification on fouls of center Ibrahim Quattara with over six minutes to play thus forcing the likes of Ricafort and Noah Webb to man the slot.
UP looked headed for a blowout by taking the first period, 28-14. However, their advance hit a temporary snag as they could only cough up nine markers in the second period to allow the Blazers to close in by halftime, 34-37.
The Maroons’ win cushioned the loss earlier in the day of their Junior Maroons to reigning UAAP champion Far Eastern University, 74-69. RJ Abarrientos showed the way for the winning Baby Tamaraws with 18 points, six rebounds and four assists as they bounced back from a loss in their last outing to the University of Santo Tomas Tiger Cubs.
Desiderio finished with a game-high 22 points and 10 rebounds. Ricafort supported him with 18 points.
Clement Leutcheu paced CSB with 18 points and 11 rebounds but shot six out of 14 from the free throw line. Rene Sta. Maria followed with 16 points.
How They Scored:
First Game (Juniors)
FAR EASTERN (74) – Abarrientos 18, Torres 12, Gonzales 10, Escoto 10, Ona 6, Baclay 6, Balaga 3, Libago 2, Sevilla 2, Rocha 2, Celzo 2, Ra Alforque 1, Mariano 0, Ro Alforque 0, Bautista 0.
UP INTEGRATED (69) – Vergiere 13, Gregorio 10, Tupaz 10, Ral Labao 10, Raf Labao 9, Estrera 7, Santiago 5, Dimaculangan 3, Lina 2, Gomez de Liano 0, Lagahit 0.
Period Scores: 16-15, 38-23, 57-44, 74-69.
Second Game (Seniors)
UP-DILIMAN (77) – Desiderio 22, Ricafort 12, Prado 8, Quattara 7, Ju Gomez de Liano 5, Dario 5, Lim 5, Manzo 5, Webb 4, Ja Gomez de Liano 2, Romero 2, Lao 0.
SAINT BENILDE (70) – Leutcheu 18, Sta. Maria 16, Dixon12, JJ Domingo 8, Naboa 5, Young 5, Velasco 4, San Juan 2, Suarez 0, Mercado 0, Castor 0, Bunyi 0.
Period Scores: 28-14, 37-34, 60-53, 77-70.