Struggling to find their form in the second round, the De La Salle University Lady Archers finally broke out of their slump at the expense of the still-winless University of the Philippines Lady Maroons, 68-56, Saturday morning at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City.
After finishing the first round with a 5-2 record, the Lady Archers suffered losses to the UE Lady Warriors, the NU Lady Bulldogs, and the FEU Lady Tamaraws that dropped them to fifth.
“Actually, hindi ko rin maintindihan. Siguro we just wanted to win today so bad just to get back on track towards the Final Four. Everybody showed up today,” said La Salle head coach Cholo Villanueva.
But with the loss of the UST Growling Tigresses earlier in the day, La Salle are now in a tie for fourth with a 6-5 slate.
“It’s a positive thing for us, pero we need to control our own destiny by winning our remaining games,” added Villanueva. “We don’t want to rely on other teams to make the Final Four. So, it’s a good first step for us to go where we want to go.”
Though not as dominant as expected, the Lady Archers paced their game all throughout, leading by as much as 20 points, 46-26, midway through the third canto.
“Today, everybody just stepped up, everybody wanted the win. So whoever was inside, they gave their one-hundred percent,” the former UAAP Men’s Basketball champion beamed.
In the final frame, UP were able to find momentum through Lou Ordeveza. The Lady Maroons could not get the lead below nine points, however, as Camille Claro and Khate Castillo were there to avert a meltdown.
Claro scored 11 of her 16 points in the final stanza, while Castillo added nine points, but the two shot a combined 7-of-26 from the field.
“Kasi we are not a one or two-player team. It’s anybody who has an open shot or an open layup, anybody who sets good screens, and, of course, the defense,” disclosed Villanueva, who is also the lead assistant coach of the JRU Heavy Bombers.
Marie Arciga had eight points and eight rebounds, while Bernice Paraiso tallied six points and seven boards. Ace rookie Angel Quingco gobbled seven boards as well.
UP, who suffered their 27th straight loss, were led by Ordoveza’s 18 points and 10 boards. Terese Medina chipped in 13 markers.
La Salle look to sustain their momentum when they face the Adamson University Lady Falcons on Wednesday, November 7, at 8:00am. On the other hand, UP will have a week off before taking on the Far Eastern University Lady Tamaraws on Saturday, November 10. Both games will be played at the SMART Araneta Coliseum.
DLSU (68) — Claro 16, Castillo K. 9, Arciga 8, Torres 7, Paraiso 6, Binaohan 5, Nuñez 4, Castillo R. 4, Jimenez 4, Del Ocampo 3, Quingco 2, Jajurie 0, Malarde 0.
UP (56) — Ordoveza 18, Medina 13, Cruz 11, Rodas 6, Amar 5, Ferrer 2, Gonzales 1, Bascon 0, De Leon 0, De Guzman 0.
Quarterscores: 15-6, 35-22, 50-37, 68-56