Errors and crucial misses prevented the DLSU Green Archers from pulling away from the FEU Tamaraws and down the stretch, a crucial miscue ended their winning streak at seven. FEU’s Mike Tolomia missed a crucial free throw that would have extended the lead to three, but he still ended up with the rebound and put back his miss to take down DLSU, 74-70.
The Green Archers fought back from an eight point deficit with 2:50 remaining in the game however, La Salle failed to secure the rebound with the game still at hand. Jeron Teng led the way with 28 points, eight rebounds, and four assists while Norbert Torres had his best game yet after sustaining a hand injury with 13 points and 10 rebounds. FEU was led by Tolomia’s 22 points and five rebounds, while Mac Belo and Alejandro Inigo added 11 and 10 markers respectively.
The game started at a blistering pace with both teams running the floor. Teng lit the scoreboard early, scoring four of his nine first quarter points to keep the Taft-based squad in contention. It was a balanced attack for the Tamaraws in the first period with balanced scoring from their players on the floor. The quarter ended with the Green Archers on top, 19-15.
La Salle’s perimeter scoring was the big difference in the first half as they made 13 shots compared to FEU’s seven,allowing them to pull away during the second quarter. The Green Archers dominated the boards, grabbing 35, 12 of which were offensive rebounds, compared to the Tamaraws’ 20 in the first half of action. The game went physical as bigs from both teams wrestled for position in the paint. At the end of the first half, DLSU was still on top, 35-26.
The Tamaraws came out of the halftime dugout with more energy to quickly cut the lead to six points. The run from the Moryata-based squad intensified the match as the defense of both teams further tightened up. The Tamaraws matched their first half output of 26 points in the third quarter to take a one point lead after three quarters, 52-51. Tolomia and Belo began to chip at the lead, eventually regaining the momentum heading into the final quarter.
In the crucial parts of the fourth, a Torres putback cut the lead to a single point, 71-70, with 48 seconds to go. DLSU would then play solid defense to block the next FEU attempt, however, the Tamaraws regained control of possession off an Almond Vosotros turnover as DLSU was forced to foul.
As a result, Tolomia sank both free throws to restore the lead to three.Teng answered with a strong drive for a 71-70 deficit. Tolomia, the main culprit in the Green-and-White’s first loss in the first round once again played hero to seal the FEU win with his free throw and crucial putback.
With the loss to the Tamaraws, the Green Archers end their seven-game win streak and share the second spot with Ateneo and National University. Up next for the Green Archers are the Adamson Falcons, whom they will face this Sunday, August 31 at the the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
FEU 74– Tolomia 22, Belo 11, Inigo 10, Escoto 7, Pogoy 7, Jose 5, Cruz 4, Hargrove 4, Tamsi 4, Dennison 0, Ugsang 0
DLSU 70– Teng 28, N.Torres 13, Perkins 8, Vosotros 7, Van Opstal 5, Sargent 4, Montalbo 3, Rivero 2, Andrada 0, Bolick 0, Tratter 0
Quarter scores: 15-19, 26-35, 52-51, 74-70