Jason Perkins came up big for La Salle against NU. (Czeasar Dancel/NPPA Images)
The Final Four cast is close to completion but the drama continues in the UAAP as this week’s results have left five teams battling it out for the four semis slots.
But wait. After Ateneo defeated UE on Sunday, , as suspended Blue Eagles coach Bo Perasol was seen at the MOA Arena during the same game. If the league decides that Perasol violated such rule, the outcome of the game could be reversed, making the race to the playoffs even more interesting.
Didn’t I say last week that this UAAP Season is filled with surprises?
This week also featured some of the best games of the season. La Salle seems to be peaking at the right time, as it snapped erstwhile league leader NU’s six-game winning streak, and extended its own triumphant run to six games to force a three-way tie at the top with NU and FEU, all with 9-4 cards. UST and Ateneo are tied at fourth and fifth spots with identical 7-5 records.
UE’s loss to Ateneo has virtually booted it out of the semis race. Unless again, the outcome of that game is reversed by virtue of a rule violation on the presence of suspended team members. Photos circulated in the internet showing UAAP Deputy Commissioner Ato Badolato asking Perasol to leave the venue during the game. The Ateneo mentor was suspended for a post-game confrontation with a Green Archers fan during the ADMU-DLSU game last week.
If the league reverses the UE-Ateneo game, the Red Warriors and Blue Eagles will be tied at fifth spot with both 6-6 slates, boosting the chances of the Growling Tigers to enter the semis.
UE will have a lighter schedule, facing the already out-of-contention Adamson Falcons on September 14 for its last elimination round game. The Blue Eagles’ final elims game is against the NU Bulldogs on September 11. NU will definitely be a tough opponent for Ateneo as it is aiming to get to the top two spots for the all-important twice-to-beat edge in the semis.
Meanwhile, all UST needs to do to attain that last semis berth is to beat La Salle on September 14, which is of course easier said than done.
And so the plot thickens. Don’t miss any of the last few elimination games, and catch the ever-unfolding drama in this UAAP season.
This week’s results:
September 4, 2013 Games: NU crushes UP, 79-62; La Salle rallies past UE in OT, 75-65.
From a close 43-36 contest in the first half, the Bulldogs caught fire in the second half to post the lopsided win over the still winless Fighting Maroons. Bobby Ray Parks was his usual amazing self as he bombarded UP with 30 markers, and also collected 10 boards and five feeds. Emmanuel Mbe added 14 points and 13 caroms. The assists department told the story – 20-9 in favor of NU. Raul Soyud was again the lone bright spot for UP as he posted impressive stats of 17 points, 12 rebounds and three blocks. Samuel Marata contributed 13 markers.
Not even Charles Mammie s sudden return could stop La Salle from edging UE in overtime. (Czeasar Dancel (NPPA
The La Salle-UE contest was a thrilling one as the Green Archers staged a strong comeback in the fourth quarter to outlast the Red Warriors in extra period. The Warriors led after the first three quarters only to lose steam in the payoff period. But Roi Sumang sent the game into OT with his free throws. In the extra five minutes however, sophomore sensation Jeron Teng carried the fight for the Green and White squad en route to the hard-earned win. Teng finished with 17 points, seven boards and four assists. Rookie Jason Perkins was also brilliant, churning out 22 points and nine boards, while Almond Vosotros chipped in 16 markers and five rebounds. Sumang and John Noble both scored 17 points, while Gino Jumao-as added 13. Charles Mammie’s suspension was cut down to just one-game, enabling him to suit up against the Green Archers. He hauled down 20 rebounds but could only score 11 markers.
September 7, 2013 Games: UST manhandles UP, 63-39; FEU waylays Adamson, 92-80
The first three quarters were tight with the Tigers just up by seven at the end of the third canto. But a 23-6 blast by UST turned the close encounter into a rout in the last period. The Tigers dominated the boards,Pittsburgh Steelers Jerseys, 71-41, and had 16 more fast break points. Aljon Mariano hit a double-double with 18 points and 10 boards, while Kevin Ferrer also played huge with 12 markers and nine rebounds. The come-backing Jeric Teng was good for nine points, four rebounds and two assists in 27 minutes of action. Marata had 12 points for UP.
Man of the Week: Terrence Romeo attained his career high in scoring versus the Falcons, sizzling with 32 points, on top of eight rebounds and four assists. The Tamaraws were determined to get back into the win column after dropping several games in the second round. They banked on an 18-10 fast break advantage, and 20-11 turnover points edge to dispose off Adamson. Mark Belo and RR Garcia combined for 32 points for FEU. Celedonio Trollano had a breakout game for the Falcons, scoring 25 points.
The Ateneo-UE game was still up for grabs until late in the fourth period. (Czeasar Dancel/NPPA Images)
September 8 Games: Ateneo nips UE sans Perasol, 77-72; DLSU shades NU, 57-55 to force three-way tie at first
Top Game of the Week: Although there were several exciting games this week, I thought the Ateneo-UE tussle was the most energy-filled to gain the Top Game of the Week honor. The Blue Eagles played without suspended head coach Perasol, and trailed the entire first half. The Warriors were up by lemon time, 44-34. But Ateneo came out with guns blazing in the third quarter with a 22-11 explosion to take the lead at 56-55 heading to the payoff period. Another 21-17 blast from the Eagles sealed the win. It was a poor shooting contest from long-range for both teams, with Ateneo hitting just 2-of-20 from beyond the arc or 10%, and UE making merely 4-of-18 from the same area or 22%. But the Eagles used a solid transition game to score the important win – Turnover points 18-10, fast break points 22-7. Both squads committed 20 turnovers each. Kiefer Ravena erupted for 22 markers, and Chris Newsome had a good all-around game with 19 points and eight boards. Sumang finished with 27 markers.
Just like the Blue Eagles,Rodman to try ‘basketball diplomacy’ with North Korea_2, the Green Archers also made a strong finishing kick in the last ten minutes to end NU’s six-game winning run. After trailing for three quarters, La Salle banked on a 15-10 swing in the fourth canto to pull the rug from under the Bulldogs, even as both teams ended with an identical 33.3% clip from the field. Teng once again played outstanding with 21 markers and seven boards, while Perkins added 18 points and 10 rebounds. Parks led NU with 19 points, followed by Joshua Alolino with 15 markers.
Who’s Hot: Parks vs UP (30 points, 10 rebounds), Perkins vs UE (22 points,LaMarr Woodley Jersey, 9 rebounds),Wholesale Troy Polamalu #43 Jersey, Mariano vs UP (18 points, 10 rebounds), Trollano vs FEU (25 points), Sumang vs Ateneo (27 points, 5 assists), Teng vs NU (21 points, 7 rebounds).
Who’s Not: Lord Casajeros vs DLSU (2 points in 29 minutes), Karim Abul vs UP (7 points in 30 minutes), Soyud vs UST (5 points in 25 minutes), Juami Tiongson vs UE (6 points, 4 turnovers in 25 minutes, 0/4 from 3 pts.), Vosotros vs NU (2 points in 32 minutes, 0/4 from 3 pts.), Mbe vs DLSU (4 points in 29 minutes).