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Tiebreaker Times


Kirby Mongcopa not celebrating 20-20 game, out to get ‘chip

Celebrated was Kirby Mongcopa’s masterful performance in Game One of the UAAP Season 85 Boys’ Basketball Finals on Tuesday at the Filoil Ecooil Centre.

And it came when Far Eastern University-Diliman badly needed it the most.

Entering the half, the Baby Tamaraws were badly being outplayed by top seed Adamson High, falling behind 50-39.

FEU-D shot poorly from the field while allowing Adamson to have their way.

For Mongcopa, someone had to step up and heed the call of Allan Albano.

“Yung sabi ni coach na first half namin, hindi pang-playoffs,” said the 6-foot-5 native of Dumaguete City.

Prior to the Finals, Mongcopa was averaging 12.13 points and 9.38 rebounds per contest. His career-high in points was 28, setting it against UST last February 15.

But Mongcopa and the Baby Tamaraws had always struggled against Adamson, bowing in two close games in the elimination round.UAAP85-HSBB-KIRBY-MONGCOPA-5688 Kirby Mongcopa not celebrating 20-20 game, out to get 'chip Basketball FEU News UAAP  - philippine sports news

Mongcopa had had enough.

“Nakuha nila yan sa experience rin.

“May mga games kasi kami dati na lamang kami na inaabutan kami. Nagiging relax sila nun pero ngayon naging pasensosyo na sila. Marami kami sa viewings namin na pinapakita namin na good shots na mintis at there are better shots,” said long-time FEU-D head coach Allan Albano.

Mongcopa took charge in the second half, scoring 11 of his 20 points and grabbing 12 of his 20 rebounds in the second half.

All the while, he did so by anchoring FEU-D’s defense that limited Adamson to just nine makes in the final 20 minutes of the game.

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And it led to a hard-fought 85-74 win.

“Pag-second half na, na-realize namin na kailangan na namin bumawi at ilabas yung second half,” he said.

Though he has earned a lot of praise for his performance, the 19-year-old, Grade 11 big man is still not satisfied.

“Pero hindi pa rin kami kontento dahil kailangan pa namin makagawa ng paraan para makuha ito.”

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