By Mikhail Franz Flores
The Far Eastern University Tamaraws banked on a 17-0 scoring run in the second quarter to subdue the UP Fighting Maroons, 70-48, in their UAAP Season 73 basketball match at the Araneta Coliseum on Sunday.
The Tamaraws played solid defense in the second period as UP was scoreless for six minutes in the quarter as RR Garcia, JR Cawaling, Pipo Noundou and Mark Bringas sizzled on the offensive end to put up a combined 17 points for FEU.
The Maroons’ first field goal in the period came from Magi Sison with 4:09 minutes left in the clock.
“Our defense was superb. No one was relaxing,” Garcia said in Filipino after the match.
Garcia led the Tamaraws with 12 points, three rebounds, and three assists as he emerged as the only Tamaraw with double-digit points in the game.
UP kept within pace in the third quarter before they succumbed to FEU in the final quarter with Terrence Romeo and Gryann Mendoza firing two straight three-pointers in the opening of the fourth quarter.
With the win, FEU solidified their hold at the top along with a twice-to-beat advantage in the Final Four already in their favor.
Meanwhile, UP remains winless in 13 outings. A loss against the University of the East on Saturday will tie their 2007 0-14 record in the UAAP.
“We’ll try at least having a respectable finish. We’ll keep on fighting,” Maroons Coach Boyet Fernandez said.
The Maroons suffered heavily on offense as they converted only two out of 23 three-point attempts or 8.7% from beyond-the arc.
“We lack consistency although we’ve been doing well in practice,” Fernandez said.
Alvin Padilla, who opened the game with a 6-0 run, led UP with 17 points while Magi Sison posted his sixth double-double in the season with 14 points and 15 rebounds.
FEU 70– Garcia 12, Cervantes 9, Mendoza 8, Noundou 8, Romeo 7, Bringas 6, Ramos 6, Knuttel 6, Cawaling 5, Guerrero 2, Exciminiano 1.
UP 48– Padilla 17, Sison 14, Martin Reyes 9, Pascual 4, Juruena 4, Silungan 0, Saret 0, Manuel 0, Evangelista 0, Mikee Reyes 0, Hipolito 0, Gingerich 0.
Quarter Scores: 7-8, 28-18, 47-36, 70-48