By Maxine Louise Lagman
MANILA, Philippines – The National University (NU) and De La Salle University (DLSU) climbed up the team standings after producing tough wins in the UAAP Season 85 men’s basketball tournament on Saturday, October 16, at the SM Mall of Asia Arena.
The Bulldogs survived Adamson University (AdU), 58-54, clinching the top spot in the standings with a 4-1 win-loss record.
Mike Malonzo and Lenda Douanga shot back-to-back points to keep a five-point lead, 54-49.
The Soaring Falcons’ Joshua Yerro drilled both his freebies to inch within three, 51-54, but Douanga and John Lloyd Clemente’s consecutive baskets only extended NU’s lead to six, 57-51, 14.5 ticks to go.
Standout Jerom Lastimosa shot a trey, but it was too late for Adamson to do much damage as Jake Figueroa’s free throw shots sealed the win for the Bulldogs.
Clemente led NU with 14 points, while Malonzo had seven points and nine rebounds.
Meanwhile, Cedrick Manzano finished with 12 points and eight rebounds, and Lastimosa chipped in 11 markers and six assists as Adamson dropped to a 2-3 slate at sixth.
On the other hand, DLSU is back in the winning column after annihilating Far Eastern University, 87-70.
“Happy with the win today. The boys showed we can bounce back. As I’ve been telling them, that 0-4 record of FEU, they’re a better than their 0-4,” said La Salle head coach Derrick Pumaren.
From an eight-point lead in the first quarter, the Green Archers went for a 32-15 run that translated to a 50-25 lead at the half.
La Salle’s lead extended to 31, 66-35, 4:12 left in the third quarter. The best the Tamaraws could do was cut the lead to 15, 66-81, 3:53 minutes remaining in the game.
Schonny Winston led La Salle with a 23-point, 14-rebound double-double on top of five assists and five steals, while Kevin Quiambao chipped in 16 markers, eight rebounds, and four assists. They now at fourth place with a 3-2 slate.
L-Jay Gonzales had 16 points, nine boards, eight assists, and five steals as FEU slid to 0-5 at the bottom of the standings, its worst start in the Final Four era.
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