UP kicks off UAAP 86 with double landslide win vs AdU

The University of the Philippines (UP) Fighting Maroons opened their UAAP Season 86 campaign by bagging back-to-back wins against the Adamson University (AdU) Soaring Falcons at the Mall of Asia Arena on Sunday, Oct. 1.

Both teams now have a 1-0 record to start their road to redemption after the men’s runner-up and women’s fifth place finish last season.

Fueled for first

The UP Men’s Basketball Team (UP MBT) showed their dominance early in the season by drowning the Adamson Soaring Falcons, 68-51, under reigning MVP Malick Diouf and team captain Cansino’s lead.

The Senegalese standout established his strong presence on the hardcourt with a double-double record of 20 points, 17 rebounds, and four blocks.

Meanwhile, key holdovers Cansino and Harold Alarcon chipped in 19 points and 10 points, respectively.

Alarcon’s buzzer-beater roughly 70 feet from the ring allowed the Maroons to cap off the first quarter at 16-11, after what UP Head Coach Goldwin described as a “slow and impatient” defense during the post-game interview.

Fortunately, State U set the pace tighter for both ends on the floor in the third frame, leading to Cansino’s 16 baskets, five of which were beyond the arc. Meanwhile, blue-chip recruit Francis Lopez was also on fire in the latter part of the match, with nine out of his 13 total rebounds coming off from the second half alone.

Maroon winger Cansino, who just returned from an ACL injury, ultimately paved the way for UP’s biggest lead at 20 points, 61-41, with only a little less than 5 minutes left on the clock.

It was a strong finish for the maroon shirts as they closed the game with a 17-point lead, following another Cansino bucket against the Falcons, who finished fourth last season.

The AdU Soaring Falcons banked on the services of Matthew Montebon and Didap Hanapi with 13 and 11 points, respectively in the absence of their star player Jerom Lastimosa. 

(L to R) UP Men’s Basketball Team CJ Cansino, Head Coach Goldwin Monteverde, and reigning MVP Malick Diouf at Mall of Asia Arena talk about their triumph against the Soaring Falcons in the post-game interview. Photo by Pia Cifra

In dominant fashion

Similarly, the UP Women’s Basketball Team (UP WBT) opened their season campaign on a high note as they drubbed the Adamson Lady Falcons with a staggering 31-point lead, 92-61.

After trailing behind Adamson by 4 points in the opening salvo, the Lady Maroons seized the lead and never looked back.

This turnaround was ignited by team captain Justine Domingo who brought the game to a deadlock in the first frame and followed it with a 27-9 run.

Capitalizing off a foul-ridden Adamson, UP made 12 of their 29 free throws just in the first quarter. The Falcons’ ramped-up defense forced the Maroons to respond with more aggressive plays ahead of halftime.

The third quarter began with a back-and-forth affair between both teams, but Rhea Sanchez and Kaye Pesquera downed consecutive triples which further denied the Falcons any chance of trimming the deficit.

The Lady Maroons maintained their hot shooting until the closing minutes when Shanina Tapawan led UP to secure its biggest lead of 35 points.

UP displayed an impressive performance on both ends of the court, generating 23 points out of 18 turnovers.

Five Lady Maroons put up double-digits in today’s match, with team captain Justine Domingo leading UP’s winning charge at 17 points and eight rebounds. Marielle Vingno and Christie Bariquit also chipped in 13 markers apiece.

Meanwhile, Victoria Adeshina powered Adamson with 14 points and 19 rebounds.

According to UP WBT head coach Paul Ramos, the women’s squad showed improvements in maturity and composure in their opening match-up.

“I think that this kind of performance on a first game sets a good tone because it validates what we’re trying to do, which is to make them more calm during games,” Ramos said.

Both teams will aim for a 2-0 winning streak as they battle it out against the University of the East Red Warriors on Oct. 4 at the Mall of Asia Arena (Men’s) and Adamson Gym (Women’s).

UP MBT QUARTER SCORES: 16-11, 31-25, 48-35, 68-51

UP WBT QUARTER SCORES: 31-17, 52-32, 77-47, 92-61