As Prince Eze relished the moment of beating the Lyceum Pirates, the Nigerian student-athlete sat inside the press room of the Filoil Flying V Centre. Trying to fight off tears, he declared:
“It is possible!”
In their last 30 elimination round games in the NCAA Seniors Basketball Tournament, the Pirates have been untouchable. But as Eze said, anything is possible.
The Perpetual Altas clawed back from a late nine-point deficit, eventually knotting the game at 81-all with 1:05 left. With the 6-foot-10 beanpole guarding the post, the Pirates could not score. And it all boiled down to the final possession for the Altas.
“To hold LPU – a very, very strong team – to hold them 13 points in the last quarter is just something else. I just have to give it to my guys,” said first-year Altas head coach Frankie Lim.
Edgar Charcos was able to find Tonton Peralta in the corner, but his triple badly missed. Fortunately for the Altas, Eze was there to clean up his teammate’s mess, knocking down a putback as time expired.
“Big game by Eze of course. He has MVP stats again tonight. Twenty-five points, twenty-three rebounds, and two blocks,” added Lim, who forgot one thing: Game-winner.
“Like I said to you, we have a lot of rookies in our team so we just have to follow the coaches which tells us what to do,” added the fourth-year big man.
“We just keep on fighting, we keep on fighting we were never down.”
But having MVP-like numbers does not entail winning the plum itself.
Last season, Eze averaged 15.5 points, 17.2 rebounds, and 2.6 blocks per game. However, with the Altas finishing with a disappointing 4-14 record, he was not eligible for the MVP race.
This time around, the Altas are in the thick of things with a 7-5 record – just half-a-game behind fourth-running CSB Blazers. And with six games remaining, Eze made a vow.
“I’m going to the playoffs!”
Nica Velasco, DLSU Lady Batters pull off stunner against UE
Déjà Vu: FEU Tamaraws pacing themselves following fiery opening day win
PBA Chair Vargas ‘deeply bothered’ by Uytengsu’s remarks against league
FEU Tamaraws send early statement, shut down defending champ NU
Lourdes Clemente only needs lineup announcement to make La Salle debut official
Fil-Am Jeremiah Gray carves own niche after turning down Ateneo, La Salle
SOURCES: Risa Sato to miss NU Lady Bulldogs’ Season 81 campaign
Phoenix’s LA Revilla, Petron’s Denden Lazaro announce engagement
UE Red Warriors start UAAP Season 81 by ending 20-game skid
LOOK: Rachel Daquis, Cherry Rondina headline PBA D-League muses
Arellano Lady Chiefs clinch three-peat after dousing Perpetual
Arellano Lady Chiefs halt Perpetual’s streak, send Finals to winner-take-all tilt
- Basketball4 days ago
SOURCES: Blackwater set to suspend Renz Palma for playing in ‘ligang labas’
- CSJL5 days ago
LA Tenorio part of Petron-Letran’s staff
- News5 days ago
Babes Castillo remains mum on NU departure, focused on rebuilding Sta. Lucia
- Basketball4 days ago
Bong Ramos, Blackwater trying to be composed amid another issue