Coming off their big upset of the UST Growling Tigreses last Tuesday, the University of the East Lady Warriors made sure to end their season the right way, staving off the University of the Philippines Lady Maroons, 71-56, Friday afternoon at the Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan City.
The Lady Warriors, who were last season’s runners-up, ended their UAAP Season 81 Women’s Basketball campaign with a 4-10 slate — seven wins down from their Season 82 campaign. Still, UE gave the rest of the league a good fight even if they lost the likes of Eunique Chan and Love Joy Sto. Domingo to graduation.
“Yun yung pinakamaganda sa amin. Kahit natatalo kami, puro dikit,” shared Aileen Lebornio. “Sabi ko nga, kahit hindi kami pumasok sa Final Four, yung respeto ng ibang teams mataas pa rin. Alam nila na malaki puso namin at lumalaban kami.
“Yung dalawang beterano namin nabitbit kami tapos nag-step up din yung sampung rookies namin. Maganda, lumaban kami. Lumaban sila as a Red Warrior at hindi sila umatras,” she added.
And it was the fitting send off for graduating players Joyce Francisco and Anna Requiron. Requiron had 15 points and 10 rebounds to go along with two blocks, two assists, and a steal while Francisco added 11 points.
With Requiron leading the way, the Lady Warriors stormed to a huge second quarter and never looked back. UE would lead by as much as 17 points in the game, 71-54 with 2:30 remaining.
“Si Requiron at si Francisco ang mawawala sa amin pero malaking bagay sa mga rookie na na-experience nila ito. At the same time, yung mga malalaking panalo namin, na-experience nila,” Lebornio shared.
Next season’s team captain Tin Cortizano had 15 points and nine rebounds while rookie Prince Ganade chipped in 11 markers. Sophomore forward Princess Ganade had 10 points and seven rebounds while her sister Anne added nine points and seven boards.
“Kailangan talaga namin mga coaches, magtulungan at madevelop namin lahat. Para pagdating ng next season, hindi na ganito. As in hindi na ganitong UE ang makikita nila,” vowed Lebornio.
UP, on the other hand, suffered their 30th straight loss to finish another season with a listless standing.
Therese Medina and Pat Rodas played their final game for the Lady Maroons. Rodas had 13 points and 11 boards while Medna had seven points and seven rebounds.
Lou Ordoveza paced UP with 15 markers.
UE 71 – Requiron 15, Cortizano 15, Francisco 11, Ganade 11, Pedregosa P. 11, Pedregosa A. 9, Borromeo 0, Nama 0, Brencis 0, Ebeza 0, Gaa 0, Strachan 0.
UP 56 – Ordoveza L. 15, Rodas 13, Cruz 12, Medina 7, Gonzales 6, Bascon 3, Amar 0, De Leon 0, De Guzman 0, Rivera 0, Hidalgo 0, Lebico 0, Moa 0, Ordoveza C. 0
Quarterscores: 14-17, 37-35, 56-49, 71-56.