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Jun Manzo, UP escape turnover-plagued UST anew to snap skid

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Philippine Sports News - Tiebreaker Times Jun Manzo, UP escape turnover-plagued UST anew to snap skid Basketball News UAAP UP UST  Vaughn Soriano UST Men's Basketball UP Men's Basketball UAAP Season 80 Men's Basketball UAAP Season 80 Paul Desiderio Marvin Lee Jun Manzo Jordan Sta. Ana Jan Jaboneta Boy Sablan Bo Perasol

Just like in their first round encounter last September 10, University of the Philippines and University of Santo Tomas figured in a close encounter. And once again, the Fighting Maroons escaped the clutches of the Growling Tigers, taking a 71-69, win Wednesday afternoon at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City.

“Every time we go up against UST, it’s always going to be classic for us,” said second-year Fighting Maroons head coach Bo Perasol, as their first round match-up had finished with a score of 74-73. “Kasi I don’t think that we will be able to out-rebound the line-up of UST. True enough, we’re almost out-rebounded by 20.”

This is UP’s first win since stunning the DLSU Green Archers last September 23, snapping their three-game losing skid. UST, on the other end, have yet to win since October 15, 2016.

“This is something that can perk us up, make us believe again that we can still do this,” Perasol pointed out.

But the final frame was a complete struggle for the Fighting Maroons.

Up by as much as 11 points, 66-55, with 6:07 remaining, the Fighting Maroons would go cold from the field, going on a five minute and 17 second drought.

Behind Vaughn Soriano and Marvin Lee, the Growling Tigers clawed back from that deficit, cutting the lead to just five, 61-66, with 3:13 left.

“We just made sure they understood how dangerous UST is despite their winless slate,” Perasol said.

Mali-native Ibrahim Outtara cleaned up a Paul Desiderio miss to stop the UP bleeding, but Soriano was able to answer back with a triple. After Outtara scored off his own miss, Lee was able to find Marvin Romero inside to continue UST’s rally. Another miss by Desiderio led to a cold-blooded Lee three to cut the lead to just one, 69-70, with 11 ticks left.

With little time remaining, Lee had to foul Jun Manzo. The Cebuano floor general converted his first attempt but “intentionally” missed the second. Off the rebound, Lee ran the lengths of the court and pulled up for a long triple. However, the shot was short as time expired.

“Just imagine what would have had happened if we lost that game, it was a close game, could have been the third close game that we had. We’re able to make a stop in the last possession. We’re just happy about this, all of us,” a relieved Perasol admitted.

Jan Jaboneta, who made his first-ever start in the UAAP, paced UP with 12 points on a perfect 4-for-4 shooting. Manzo and Desiderio finished with 11 and 10 points respectively, but combined to shoot just 8-for-32 from the field.

UP were also able to protect the ball better compared to UST, committing just seven turnovers. The Growling Tigers had 23 turnovers that led to 24 points.

Lee led UST with 17 points. Soriano chipped in a career-high 14 markers while Akomo hauled down 20 rebounds.

UP look to sustain their momentum from this game when they try to stun the De La Salle University Green Archers once more on Sunday, October 15, at the Filoil Flying V Centre. UST, on the other hand, face the National University Bulldogs on the same day at 12:00nn.

The Scores:

UP 71 – Jaboneta 12, Manzo 11, Desiderio 10, Ju. Gomez de Liano 9, Ouattara 9, Lim 6, Vito 6, Ja. Gomez de Liano 4, Romero 2, Prado 2, Ricafort 0, Lao 0, Dario 0.

UST 69 – Lee 17, Soriano 14, Sta. Ana 13, Akomo 7, Basibas 5, Macasaet 5, Romero 4, Huang 2, Faundo 2, De Guzman 0, Caunan 0, Kwawukumey 0, Garcia 0.

Quarterscores: 15-17, 40-32, 61-55, 71-69.

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