In what could have been their last game in UAAP Season 77, the DLSU Green Archers left it all on the court as they pacified the FEU Tamaraws, 94-73, in their semifinal match-up last September 27 to force a winner-take-all match for a finals berth on Wednesday, October 1.
“We really had to bounce back,” said DLSU forward Jeron Teng who redeemed himself after a poor showing in their tiebreaker game last week against FEU. He led the Green Archers to victory with 25 points, seven rebounds and three assists.
Norbert Torres and Almond Vosotros were also crucial to La Salle’s cause as the seniors contributed 18 and 17 points, respectively. Meanwhile, Mac Belo took the charge for the Tamaraws with a career high 32 points. However, he was the only one to score in double digits, with star guard Mike Tolomia notably scoring just seven points.
The Green Archers started the first quarter on a high note, taking an early six point lead after a three point shot from Vosotros. La Salle continued their hot streak on the court as Julian Sargent made three triples immediately after checking into the game to boost his team’s lead to 11, 22-11. The Green Archers ended the first quarter on top, 24-14.
In the second quarter, the Tamaraws woke up from first quarter’s slow start as they made a 13-3 run to cut the deficit to just four, 31-27. However, Teng answered back with a three-pointer to end the first half still in favor of La Salle, 34-27.
The Green Archers began to pull away in the third quarter as Jeron Teng scored 11 of his 25 points and made 50 percent of his field goals. Even after a hard foul from Ron Dennison, Teng led the charge for DLSU along with Vosotros and Torres, who combined for 12 points. FEU actually had a better shooting percentage than La Salle but DLSU shot more free throws than the Tamaraws, 20-6. Both teams only turned the ball over four times however both DLSU and FEU committed a total of 18 fouls.
In the fourth, FEU continued to have no answer for the Green Archers, who stretched their lead to its largest at 25, midway through the fourth. Both teams began to clear their benches with two minutes left in the game.
Norbert Torres also added a season high 18 points, seven rebounds, and had a big block that got the crowd going. Vosotros had an all around game as he finished with 17 points, eight rebounds and four assists. Sargent had 11 points, nine of which came from the three three pointers he made in the first quarter while Perkins and van Opstal finished with 12 and 10 rebounds respectively.
Belo was the only double digit scorer for FEU with 32, since Tolomia managed to make two of his 14 field goals, finishing with seven points. Achi Inigo added six points while Carl Cruz, Roger Pogoy, and Anthony Hargrove combined for eight points.
DLSU dominated the boards in this game, out-rebounding FEU 54-41. La Salle also had 19 assists to FEU’s 10 but the Green Archers committed 15 turnovers to FEU’s nine.
Up next for the Green Archers is the do-or-die matchup against FEU on October 1, wherein the winner will advance to the finals to face the winner of th game between the NU Bulldogs and the ADMU Blue Eagles. The DLSU-FEU game will be played afterwards in the Smart-Araneta Coliseum at 6pm.
DLSU 94 – Teng 25, N. Torres 18, Vosotros 17, Sargent 11, Perkins 8, van Opstal 4, Montalbo 3, T. Torres 3, Rivero 2, Salem 2, Mustre 1, Andrada 0
FEU 73 – Belo 32, Tolomia 7, David 7, Inigo 6, Tamsi 6, Jose 5, Cruz 4, Pogoy 2, Hargrove 2, Ugsang 2, Lee Yu 0, Dennison 0, Escoto 0, Delfinado 0, Denila 0
Quarter scores: 24-14, 34-27, 63-47, 94-73