The De La Salle University (DLSU) Green Archers relied on their well-balanced attack to shut down the slumping Mapua Institute of Technology (MIT) Cardinals, 96-86, to post their fifth straight victory in the 2015 FilOil-Flying V Hanes Premier Cup at the FilOil-Flying V Arena in San Juan City.
DLSU lagged by three, 10-7, in the 6:20 mark of the opening frame, but came back strong behind the efforts of Thomas Torres, Prince Rivero, and Jahal Tratter by unleashing a 13-3 run to take the lead, 20-13, with less than two minutes remaining. Josan Nimes and Carlos Isit provided back-to-back baskets for MIT, but a Jason Perkins lay-up ended the quarter for DLSU, 22-17.
The Cardinals sent the game to a 26-all tie with less than seven minutes to go in the second quarter after a Nimes basket, then splashed to a 10-4 spree to grab the upper hand, 36-30, with 4:15 remaining. DLSU, meanwhile, made a 12-2 run of their own to lead once more, 42-38, with less than a minute left. Both teams exchanged baskets, until DLSU went up 46-43 with 13.4 seconds in the first half. An Isit jumper closed the half for MIT behind, 46-45.
The slim one-point lead grew to a bigger one for the Green Archers, sparking eleven straight points from a 59-57 lead courtesy of Rivero, Teng, Andrei Caracut, and Renzo Navarro to post their first taste of a double-digit lead, 70-57, with less than two minutes on the clock. Teng, Jollo Go, and Tratter scored baskets to preserve and enhance DLSU’s lead, 75-60, approaching the fourth quarter.
It was all DLSU in the final canto, with Navarro, Torres, and Caracut propelling the Green Archers to their biggest lead of the game, 88-69, with 4:30 to go. However, Nimes and the Cardinals also converted baskets from beyond the arc, closing within eleven, 91-80, with less than two minutes left, but a Tratter layup and a Torres trey in the dying seconds helped seal the win for DLSU.
Despite the victory, DLSU head coach Juno Sauler was not satisfied, especially with the way his team played defensively. “We cannot give up 86 points,” said Sauler. “We should be able to limit teams consistently below that score.”
Four Green Archers hit double figures in the win, with Rivero scoring 22 points and grabbing a team-high 13 rebounds. Torres had 21, highlighted by three triples, while Teng and Caracut had 14 and 11, respectively. Nimes led all scorers with 28 markers in the loss.
DLSU will face the Centro Escolar University Scorpions this Saturday, May 30, at 5PM, while Mapua will have the Lyceum of the Philippines University Pirates this Friday, May 29, at 1:30 PM.
DLSU 96< – Rivero 22, Torres 21, Teng 14, Caracut 11, Navarro 9, Tratter 8, Perkins 6, Go 2, Van Opstal 2, Pascual 1
MIT 86 – Nimes 28, Oraeme 11, Dela Rosa 10, Isit 8, Serrano 8, Biteng 7, Raflores 6, Nieles 5, Que 3
|DLSU (B, 5-1)||22||46||75||96|
|MIT (B, 1-5)||17||45||60||86|