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Tamaraws romp Tigers behind Trinidad’s career game

The rematch of the UAAP Season 78 Men’s Basketball finals was not a sight to behold.

The Far Eastern University Tamaraws did not allow the University of Santo Tomas Growling Tigers to taste the lead in a 79-72 win, Saturday evening at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.

Filipino-American floor general Jojo Trinidad torched the Growling Tigers backcourt, scoring a personal-high of 17 points with all five of his field goals coming from distance. Raymar Jose added a double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds.

But it was not just Trinidad who did the damage as the Tamaraws lambasted the porous UST zone defense, knocking down a team-high 11 triples in the game.

“It was a test because we were coming off a 51 point out when we played UP,” FEU head coach Nash Racela said. “The challenge today was to score more than 51. But I think what’s critical today was assists [17].”

The Tamaraws got off to a sizzling start as the inside-outside combination of Trinidad and Jose sparked a 13-0 and, later on, 16-2 lead.

“My coach said we need to bounce back from the UP game,” third year floor general Jojo Trinidad added. “I felt like today we shared the ball more, got our open looks and the results came out.”

The lead grew to as high as 17 points in the third frame as Trinidad continued his surge.

Behind Louie Vigil, who paced UST with 16 points, the season hosts to cut the lead to just seven, 71-64, with 2:57 left in the game.

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“Continuous yung struggle to get better. We’re expecting a lot of teams would zone us,” Racela reflected. “We’re not a good team playing against the zone.”UAAP-79-FEU-UST-Prince-Orizu Tamaraws romp Tigers behind Trinidad's career game Basketball FEU News NU UAAP  - philippine sports news

Fortunately for the Tamaraws, a mental lapse by Marvin Lee resulted to a three-point play for Raymar Jose to stop the FEU bleeding. They were then able to withstand any rally Vigil tried to spark in the last two minutes of the game including a highlight-reel jam by Prince Orizu, who finished the game with nine points and 13 rebounds.

“It’s a long season. We’ll give our best, defend,” the UAAP champion coach closed.

Richard Escoto missed his third straight game while defensive specialist Ron Dennison served his suspension in the game.

Marvin Lee and Regie Basibas scored 13 and 11 points respectively for UST who shot 43 percent from the field.

The FEU Tamaraws (4-2) take on UAAP Season 77 champions NU Bulldogs (4-2) on Wednesday, October 5 at 4:00pm. On the other hand, the UST Growling Tigers (2-4) look to arrest its skid on the same day, facing the Adamson Soaring Falcons (3-2) in the first game of the day at 2:00pm.

The Scores:

FEU (79) – Trinidad 17, Jose 16, Arong 11, Orizu 9, Bayquin 5, Holmqvist 4, Denila 4, Tuffin 3, Ebona 3, Nunag 3, Roxas 3, Comboy 1, Bienes 0.

UST (72) – Vigil 16, Lee 13, Basibas 11, Sheriff 8, Subido 7, Macasaet 6, Faundo 6, Huang 3, Lao 2, Tateishi 0, Caunan 0, Afoakwah 0, De Guzman 0.

Quarterscores: 22-14, 42-29, 65-50, 79-72.

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