The University of the East (UE) Red War-riors avenged their first round loss against the University of Santo Tomas (UST) Growling Tigers, 71-61, in the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) men’s basketball tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City on Saturday.
Mark Olayon scored off two consecutive misses with 8:14 minutes left in the match, 63-48. Edgar Charcos then notched a floater, 67-50. With 6:20 minutes left, a technical foul was called on UE for continuous complaining of UE head coach Derrick Pumaren.
Tiger William Afoakwah sank his four free throws after Alvin Pasaol drew two fouls, 69-58. Louie Vigil hit a layup in the last seconds of the match, 71-61.
“We know how important this win is for us. We take this one game at a time and we just have to come out and fall out of the hole where we are right now. That win against Adamson, we used that as positive fuel that we have to pick from there and hopefully, that should be the start for us,” said Pumaren.
The Tigers were blazing hot in the opening minutes of the match with Vigil completing his three-point play, and Zachary Huang and Afoakwah notching baskets, 4-7.
Olayon snatched the lead for UE with 3:30 minutes left in the first quarter, 11-10. Edson Batiller sank his two free throws, extending the lead to five, 15-10.
In the second quarter, the Red Warriors ballooned their lead to 19 as Pasaol drove to the basket, 35-16.
“I told the boys before the game that we’re gonna come out and jump on them right away. We’re coming out winning against Adamson, while they (UST) came from a loss against Adamson so their morale is down and we took advantage of that. That’s why forced them to throw the basketball,” Pumaren added.
The Growling Tigers tallied 32 turnovers compared to Red Warriors’ 19. UE and UST both hold 2-6 win-loss cards.
Olayon topscored UE with 14 points and seven rebounds, while Pasaol and Charcos added nine markers apiece. Vigil led UST with 21 points and Afoakwah recorded a double-double performance of 10 markers and 21 rebounds.
“I’m happy because we have our second straight win. We took confidence from our last game,” said Olayon.
During their first meeting last September 10 this season, the UST Tigers beat the UE Red Warriors, 88-87.
In the other match, the University of the Philippines (UP) Fighting Maroons shocked the Ateneo de Manila University Blue Eagles, 56-52, to notch their second victory this season.
With 16.4 seconds left in the match, Christopher Vito scored a trey from the corner to give UP a four-point lead, 54-50.
Blue Eagle Adrian Wong drove to the basket, 54-52. Vince Tolentino drew the foul on Jett Manuel with 7.2 seconds left.
Manuel then sank his two free throws, handing the victory to UP, 56-52. He led UP with 15 markers.
Wong and Chibueze Ikeh led Ateneo with 10 points apiece.