University of the East pulled away using a dominating second half to oust a lethargic Adamson University, 67-43 Wednesday in the UAAP Season 78 women’s basketball tournament at the Blue Eagle Gym.
The Lady Warriors joined UST in a tie from third to fourth in the team standings with 6-7 cards. UE is now assured of at least a playoff game for the Final Four.
The Lady Falcons dropped 9 of their last 10 games and fell to 4-9, without a chance of making the post-season.
UE first seized control of the game late in the second quarter when Eunique Chan and Nicole Mendina combined for 8 in a 12-2 which opened a 33-22 halftime lead for the Recto cagers.
In the third period, UE outscored Adamson 21-8 to increase the gap to 54-30 heading into the payoff period. Not satisfied, Chery Ano-os opened the fourth quarter on an 8-2 run as the Lady Warriors made it a 62-32 bubble.
Ruthlaine Tacula fired 20 points to lead the Lady Warriors. Chan and Mendina added 12 points apiece. Chan also hauled down 15 rebounds while Ano-os had 11 points, 10 rebounds, and 4 assists.
UE controlled the glass, having a 58-38 lead in rebounding. They also scored 27 fastbreak points against none from Adamson, and held a 48-22 advantage in inside points.
Princess Cochico was the only player who finished in double-digits for Adamson, pacing the San Marcelino side with 10 points, 5 rebounds, and 3 assists.
Ateneo is still in the running for a playoff for the Final Four and the team will have to beat Adamson on Sunday to force a rubber match against the loser of the UST-UE battle on the same day.
The winner of the UST-UE match will gain the third Final Four spot, joining leaders NU and La Salle.
UE (67) – Tacula 20, Chan 12, Mendina 12, Ano-os 11, Sto. Domingo 4, Ramos 4, Taguiam 3, Gayacao 1, Francisco 0, Bale 0, Sampaga 0, Nama 0, Relova 0, Antonio 0, Cortizano 0.
AdU (43) – Cochico 10, Araja 6, Camacho 5, Tabanao 4, Tacitac 4, Aciro 4, Diaz 3, Alcoy 3, Lacson 2, Osano 2, Generoso 0, Ido 0, Pingol 0, Ramillano 0, Escalante 0.
Quarterscores: 17-15, 33-22, 54-30, 67-43.