Far Easter University (FEU) eyes to secure at least a playoff for the last Final Four berth while National University (NU) seeks to fan its dying semifinals chances when the two teams tangle on Wednesday in the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) Season 80 men’s basketball tournament at the Araneta Coliseum.
The Tamaraws and the Bulldogs square off in the crucial curtain raiser at 2 p.m.
Following a 79-63 domination over University of the East three days back, FEU gained a solo fourth spot with an even 6-6 win-loss record.
A win by the Morayta-based cagers will seal for them at least a knockout game for the last semifinals slot.
Despite coming off a blowout victory, FEU head coach Olsen Racela admitted that his wards still need to work on their game.
“There are still a lot of rooms to improve on. Our slow start is one of them and also our turnovers. But as a coach, I take a look on the positives,” said the rookie mentor.
NU, on the other hand, was almost eliminated after suffering a 76-101 whipping to defending champion De La Salle University, which grabbed a twice-to-beat advantage heading into the Final Four.
With the demoralizing defeat, the Jamike Jarin-mentored Bulldogs dropped to a 4-8 slate, putting them in danger of missing the playoff picture for the second straight year.
Meanwhile, Ateneo De Manila University aims to inch closer anew to a sweep of the double-round eliminations when it takes on a determined University of the Philippines in the main game at 4 p.m.
The leading Blue Eagles (12-0) are just two wins away from the sweep, which will guarantee them a slot in the best-of-three finals series.
Ateneo posted its 12th straight win at the expense of the winless University of Santo Tomas, 102-83, last Saturday.
The fifth-running Fighting Maroons (5-7), however, are raring to stay in the race to the Final Four as they fight for their first semifinals appearance in three decades.
The State U absorbed a huge blow in its playoff bid after bowing down to the semifinals-bound Adamson University, 70-86, last Sunday.