La Salle reasserts dominance over UST to start Round 2

MVP race leader Kevin Quiambao flexed his might as De La Salle University pulled University of Santo Tomas down from cloud nine with a 100-69 victory to start the second round of the UAAP Season 86 Men’s Basketball Tournament at the SM Mall of Asia Arena, Wednesday.

Quiambao, the 22-year-old sophomore, delivered 22 points, 12 rebounds, six assists, five steals, and a block in 23 minutes and nine seconds.

“Focused kami kung ano yung nasa harap namin and yung pagkakamali namin nung first round marami kaming natutunan doon. Coming to the second round, kailangan namin magadjust, kailangan namin mag stick more to the system,” said Quiambao, last season’s Rookie of the Year.

Raven Cortez, JC Macalalag, Bright Nwankwo, and Quiambao teamed up for a Green Archers’ lead-expanding run in the final two minutes of the second quarter to turn a six-point margin into a 52-38 advantage at the half.

La Salle then continued its surge in the third period where the trio of Quiambao, Cortez, and Jonnel Policario dominated for a 26-point cushion heading into the fourth quarter, 75-49.

“The first round kinda gave us a back view of where we are sa team already. There are a lot of challenges nung first round but I guess what’s good about it is coming to this second round is we’re able to look at where we could improve on,” said first-year Green Archers head coach Topex Robinson.

The Green Archers hiked their record to 5-3 for solo third while sending the Growling Tigers down to 1-7 for last spot.

First-year forward Policarpio also had his best game with 14 points, 11 rebounds, five assists, a steal, and a block, stepping up for Mike Phillips, who did not play due to a sprained ankle.

Raven Cortez backed up his splendid game last time out with 13 points, five rebounds, and three blocks while Evan Nelle, who’s also in the running for a spot in the Mythical Five, dropped 11 points, 10 assists, and four steals as well for La Salle.

The Green Archers dominated across the board, getting huge edge in assists (30-19), rebounds (53-37), turnover points (33-5), and bench points (60-34).

La Salle will go for three straight wins on Saturday when it battles National University, which beat them in the first round in overtime, 80-77. Meanwhile, UST will look to find its winning magic again earlier that day against University of the East.

Nic Cabañero got 13 points, six assists, and five rebounds for the Growling Tigers. Christian Manaytay chimed in 10 points and four rebounds.

The Scores:

DLSU 100 – Quiambao 22, Policarpio 14, Cortez 13, Nelle 11, Gollena 9, Escandor 6, Macalalag 5, Nwankwo 4, B. Phillips 4, Nonoy 4, Abadam 3, David 3, Austria 2, Manuel 0, I. Phillips 0.
UST 69 – Cabañero 13, Manaytay 10, Moore 9, Duremdes 8, Crisostomo 7, Laure 6, Lazarte 5, Llemit 4, Manalang 4, Ventulan 2, Gesalem 1, Pangilinan 0, Magdangal 0, Esmena 0, Calum 0.
Quarterscores: 29-21, 52-38, 75-49, 100-69