The Diliman College Blue Dragons rode on the back of big man Adama Diakhite to defeat the Centro Escolar University Scorpions, 69-55, at the start of the 2018 SMART-UCBL Summer Tournament, Wednesday afternoon at the Philippine Buddhacare Academy.
The 6-foot-9 Diakhite came off the bench and his presence alone was enough for the Blue Dragons to hang on to the victory. Diakhite finished with 15 points, 11 rebounds and four blocks.
Diliman raced to a 5-0 lead but they allowed the Scorpions to come back and tie the count at 5-5. That was the last to be heard from CEU as the Blue Dragons dictated the game’s tempo up to the final buzzer.
Veteran guards MacArthur Enriquez and Kristoffer Torrado provided support with 12 and 10 points each with Torrado, last year’s summer Most Valuble Player, dishing out seven assists
Paul Galinato had 16 points for CEU.
In the second game, the Jose Rizal University Heavy Bombers used a 15-0 run in the third period behind Macky Perez, MJ Dela Virgen, and Justin Padua to frustrate the University of Santo Tomas Growling Tigers, 93-87.
The Heavy Bombers rallied and seized the lead for good, 63-53, with Dela Virgen returning in the fourth to join Leonardo Esguerra and Jonathan Jed Mendoza in insuring the victory.
Esguerra paced the Heavy Bombers with 19 points and 10 rebounds. Mendoza followed with 17 while Dela Virgen added 14.
Former Green Archer Brent Paraiso made his debut for the Growling Tigers, finishing with 17 points and five assists. Incoming rookie Sherwin Concepcion paced UST with 38 points and 10 rebounds.
For the tournament’s curtain-raiser, the National University Bulldogs stopped the Olivarez College Sea Lions, 84-74.
Nico Abatayo topped the Bulldogs with 19 points and four rebounds while Mike Malonzo and Reggie Morido backed him up with 15 points each.
NU (84) – Abatayo 19, Morido 15, Malonzo 15, Lastimosa 12, Penano 10, Cauilan 7, Sistoza 2, Salim 2, Atienza 2, Yu 0, Puray 0.
Olivarez (74) – Castro 20, Completo 12, Elie 12, Umali 7, Siegue 5, Campos 5, Santos 4, Rocero 4, de Leon 2, Almajeda 2, Terania 1, Patizar 0, Ignacio 0, Sala 0, Abaoag 0.
Quarterscores: 15-12, 36-32, 62-55, 84-74.
JRU (93) – Esguerra 19, Mendoza 17, Dela Virgen 14, Perez 8, Estrella 8, Ramos 7, de la Rosa 7, Padua 6, Bordon 3, Silvarez 2, Dulalia 2, Yu 0.
UST (87) – Concepcion 38, Paraiso 17, Pangilinan 12, Ayo 9, Cosejo 5, Enriquez 2, Yongco 2, Lagumen 2, Batuzolele 0, Monje 0.
Quarterscores: 15-19, 31-33, 63-57, 93-87.
Diliman (69) – Diakhite 15, Enriquez 12, Arceta 10, Torrado 10, Brutas 9, Bauzon 5, Mbiya 4, Olea 2, Sombero 1, Diaz 1, Salazar 0, Cecilio 0.
CEU (55) – Galinato 16, Wamar 10, Oloume 8, Cruz 6, Guinitaran 6, Uri 4, Ke Caballero 4, Chan 1, Formento 0, Ko Caballero 0, Ello 0, Callano 0, Rojas 0, Umeanozie 0, Pamaran 0.
Quarterscores: 16-7, 38-25, 53-39, 69-55.
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