The Altas’ goal of making it to the post-season is just a few inches away from them.
Behind a career-game by Kim Aurin, the University of Perpetual Help System DALTA Altas ran roughshod on the Emilio Aguinaldo College Generals with an 81-67 rout, Tuesday afternoon at the Filoil Flying V Centre.
With an 11-5 slate, Perpetual is just one win away from making it to the Final Four — a place the Altas were not in just a season ago.
Knowing this, the Altas were overeager in the first half, much to the dismay of Frankie Lim.
“We struggled a bit in the first half. Tight yung mga bata kasi gusto nila tambakan kaagad. Normally, sa games na ganito, yun yung inaasahan mo mangyari. Good thing the boys settled down in the third and naging mas maganda yung flow ng opensa namin,” the first-year Altas head coach said.
Aurin was a man possessed in the third frame, scoring seven points during that span while making key stops to give Perpetual a lead that went to as high as 15 points.
“I think we made a lot of stops and we were able to get fastbreak points. That’s our prize for making stops, easy baskets,” added Lim.
The former JRU Heavy Bomber finished with a career-best 26 points on 9-for-15 shooting — three points higher than his previous high he set last September 28 against Mapua.
“Una, nagpapasalamat ako sa teammates namin. Kailangan talaga namin yung laro na ito dahil humahabol na yung Benilde. Yun yung motivation namin,” said Aurin.
A scary moment occurred in the third canto as Hamadou Laminou suffered a nasty cut on the upper part of his left eye.
With 22.6 seconds left in the third canto of the Emilio Aguinaldo College Generals’ game against the Perpetual Help Altas, the 23-year-old went for a spin move against Perpetual third-stringer Jerome Pasia. Laminou lost his footing resulting to a fall.
Pasia could not find his balance however. As the Cameroonian student-athlete was on the floor face down, Pasia’s knee landed squarely at the back of Laminou’s head.
The Perpetual rookie was assessed a disqualifying foul while the 6-foot-8 big man was stretchered off the court and into the dressing room.
Laminou was advised not to return to the game, finishing with 17 points and eight rebounds.
EAC settled with exchanging baskets with Perpetual in the final frame.
Besides Aurin, the Altas also got standout performances from Prince Eze and Jielo Razon. The graduating big man had 14 points, 16 rebounds, and two blocks while rookie Razon tallied 11 points, four rebounds, four assists, and three steals.
EAC dropped to 4-13. The Altas had Jethro Mendoza having 17 points while JP Magullano adding 10 points and 10 rebounds.
Perpetual plays its penultimate game of the round against the Letran Knights on Friday, October 12. EAC, on the other hand, plays its final game of the season against the JRU Heavy Bombers on the same day.
UPHSD 81-– Aurin 26, Eze 14, Razon 11, Coronel 8, Jimenez 8, Peralta 5, Charcos 4, Mangalino 3, Pasia 2, Cuevas 0, Sese 0, Tamayo 0.
EAC 67 — Laminou 17, Mendoza 17, Magullano 10, Cadua 6, Corilla 4, Diego 4, Natividad 4, Gonzales 3, Tampoc 2, Garcia 0, Bautista 0, Bugarin 0, Neri 0, Fuentes 0.
Quarterscores: 19-17, 37-35, 61-49, 81-67.