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Green Archers stay perfect, dominate Pirates


The De La Salle University Green Archers extended their unbeaten streak to six as they shook off the late surge of the Lyceum of the Philippines University Pirates, 87-78, at the 2016 FilOil Flying V Premier Cup, Thursday at the FilOil Flying V Centre.

After a slow start from the Green Archers, Ricci Rivero fired off five straight points to propel them to a 35-18 lead with 7:04 left in the first half. La Salle was hen able to push their lead to 27, 56-29 at the break with two consecutive dunks from Ben Mbala.

Four straight points at the start of the third period, capped by an Andrei Caracut-jumper, put the Green Archers into its biggest lead at 31, 60-29. A trey from Dexter Zamora instigated a fight back from the Pirates with 3:11 left in the third quarter.

The Pirates continued their push with Edcor Marata and Dexter Zamora taking charge. LPU cut the deficit to 24, 46-70, to end the third frame.

Playing with mostly the bench players, DLSU shook off the challenge of the stubborn Intramuros-based squad.

“This is a postseason game. I want all my players to play well,” De La Salle Head Coach Aldin Ayo commented on why who stuck with his bench at the crucial end of the fourth quarter.

At the start of the fourth period, the Pirates scored five straight and gained confidence at the middle of the canto. Marata led Lyceum’s 9-0 run with three minutes left to cut the lead to just six, 78-84, with 44.1 seconds left.

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A series of botched plays from the Pirates spelled their doom in the dying minutes of the game. Ultimately, Kib Montalbo fired off the dagger trey off a Melecio assist to seal the Green Archers’ sixth victory of the season.

Ayo also expressed that, Despite the run by the Pirates, the first-time La Salle mentor knew his bench would close out the game. “I trust my second stringers,” he ended.

Team Captain Jeron Teng produced 20 points in 23 minutes, with 3 assists and 2 steals. Despite playing a bit off, Mbala still mustered a double-double performance of 15 points and 11 rebounds. Meanwhile, Harry Nzeusseu paced the Pirates with 21 markers and 17 caroms.

The unscathed Green Archers closes out their eliminations as Ayo his former team, the Colegio de San Juan de Letran Knights on June 5, Sunday at 5:00pm. On the other hand, the Pirates just finished their Cup stint at 1-6 record.

The Scores:

DLSU (87) – Teng 20, Mbala 15, Caracut 9, Melecio 8, Tratter 7, Montalbo 6, Rivero P 6, Gob 6, Rivero R 5, Torres 2, Go 2, Paraiso 0

LPU (78) – Nzeusseu 21, Marata 13, Zamora 12, Malabanan 9, Caduyac 6, Ayaay 5, Bulawan 5, Baltazar 3, Magbuhos 3, Allanes 2, Soliman 0, Alban 0, Serafica 0

Quarterscores: 26-11, 56-29, 70-46, 87-78.

Grew to appreciate various sports from tennis to judo. True-maroon kiddo since the new millennium. Fanboy. Singer. Occasional sports writer.

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