The National University (NU) Lady Bulldogs gun to clinch their third consecutive championship when they battle the De La Salle University (DLSU) Lady Archers in Game 2 of the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) women’s basketball finals at the Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City on Wednesday.
“We really have to prepare hard again. I told my coaching staff that we really have to learn from this. It’s not easy playing against La Salle. And I know they wanna get back at us so we have to be ready,” said NU head coach Patrick Aquino.
The Lady Bulldogs survived the late rally of the Lady Archers in Game 1 last Saturday, 77-74.
La Salle completed a 15-4 run with Camille Claro and Khate Castillo notching five three-pointers in the 1:05 minute mark of the last quarter to cut NU’s lead to one, 71-70.
Ria Nabalan retaliated for NU after sinking back-to-back treys with 23.4 seconds left in the match, 77-72.
“We will not relax. We’ll keep on training. We’ll perfect the things that we failed to do on our game,” Nabalan added.
Gemma Miranda top scored for NU with a double-double performance of 23 points and 15 rebounds, while Jack Animam and Afril Bernardino combined for 24 markers.
Nabalan and Rhena Itesi added 11 points apiece.
Castillo led La Salle with 18 markers, while Snow Peñaranda tallied 16 points and 11 rebounds. Claro and Bennette Revillosa had 15 and 14 markers, respectively.
“It takes two games to win a championship. They (NU) just had one win. We still have two chances. They still have to beat us to win a championship so it’s not yet over. We still have two more games to live,” said La Salle head coach Cholo Villanueva.
NU dominated under the basket, tallying 48 rebounds against La Salle’s 35. But the Lady Archers capitalized on NU’s 26 turnovers to score 27 points.
“We still need to work more on our rebounding and blocking out. That’s the glaring advantage that NU has. And of course, they’re the champion team, so for us, again, it’s everything to gain from this experience in the finals,” Villanueva added.
The clash between the NU Lady Bulldogs and the La Salle Lady Archers will start at 11 a.m.