Saturday, 23 July 2011 26 Comments
THE last time De La Salle University University found itself at 0-2, a victory over the University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons helped them break into the win column. Two years later, history repeated itself as the Green Archers nailed their first victory of UAAP Season 74, 79-67 against UP last July 23 at the Araneta Coliseum.
Leaning on their big men and a steadiness at the free throw line that didn’t exist in the summer, the Archers rocked the Fighting Maroons with a 13-4 start and never relinquished the lead as UP played catch-up for the entire 40 minutes. Opting not to start Nigerian center Alinko Mbah, the UP coaching staff quickly regretted their decision as Arnold Van Opstal terrorized former UAAP Juniors MVP Mark Juruena to the tune of seven first quarter points. UP rallied to get to within four in the second period on a dunk by Mbah off a nifty pass from Mike Silugan, 22-18. The joy quickly faded, as two possessions later, Mbah was whistled for his third foul after wrestling for a rebound with Van Opstal. A Silungan triple after Van Opstal nailed his freebies, made it a three-point game, 24-21 before La Salle responded with a 12-4 blast behind hustle plays by former Letran Squire Jarelan Tampus.
State U kept things close until De La Salle’s haymaker in the third quarter, which saw three steals fuel a 12-0 run in a four-minute stretch. A Carlo Gomez layup to break the drought proved meek as the Green Archers led, 48-31. The Maroons tried to make one last go at it in the fourth, starting the finale canto with three straight layups from Jelo Montecastro and Jett Manuel. But eight straight by streak shooter Luigi de la Paz and a Yutien Andrada putback of a miss by Simon Atkins restored DLSU’s 20-point lead, 69-49, with 5:11 to play, putting the game out of reach. “We played aggressive ball and I think we controlled the boards, that’s why we won,” said La Salle head coach Dindo Pumaren. “I noticed also that we’re sharing the ball, compared to our last two games, assists namin wala eh. I think that’s the problem right now, but na-solve namin kahit paano.”
De la Paz led the Archers with 14 points, seven rebounds and four assists. Van Opstal and Tampus scored 13 each, while Andrada bounced back after missing last week’s Ateneo-La Salle game to finish with 11 markers, seven boards and three dimes.
UP, meanwhile, was paced by Mike Silungan’s 16 points, though 13 came in the first half. Mbah added 15 points, nine rebounds and three swats, while the reserve backcourt of Manuel and Montecastro combined for 24 points and six assists.
The Archers dominated the glass, getting 61 rebounds, 26 on the offensive end, to just 33 and 13, respectively, by UP. Another factor that contributed to State U’s defeat was the inability to nail charities, making just 7 of their 20 attempts. La Salle proved steadier, missing just four out of their 21 trips to the line.
De La Salle looks to reach .500 when they play the National University Bulldogs next Thursday, July 28. UP, on the other hand, hopes to upset the defending champion Ateneo de Manila Blue Eagles a week from now on July 30.
De La Salle 79 – De la Paz 14, Van Opstal 13, Tampus 13, Andrada 11, Revilla 9, Atkins 7, Villanueva 6, Torres 4, Vosotros 2, Sara 0, Gotladera 0, Webb 0, Mendoza 0, Marata 0
UP 67 – Silungan 16, Mbah 15, Manuel 13, Montecastro 11, Gomez 5, Juruena 4, Gamboa 3, Romero 0, Pascual 0, Maniego 0, Gingerich 0
Quarter scoring: 20-12, 36-29, 59-39, 79-67