UAAP Basketball

31-year wait ends: Adamson rules UAAP high school hoops over NU

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31-year wait ends: Adamson rules UAAP high school hoops over NU

ALL OUT. Adamson's JC Bonzalida celebrates after a shot against NU in Game 3 of the UAAP juniors basketball finals.

UAAP

Adamson pulls off a wire-to-wire triumph against NU in the sudden-death Game 3 to capture its first UAAP high school basketball championship since 1993

MANILA, Philippines – It took a lot of hard work for the Adamson Baby Falcons to return to the top. 

But it turned out to be all worth it as Adamson held off an unpredictable National University-Nazareth School, 90-73, in the do-or-die Game 3 to capture the UAAP Season 86 high school boys basketball championship on Sunday, February 11, at the FilOil EcoOil Centre.  

The wire-to-wire triumph gave Adamson its first high school basketball title in 31 years, the last during the Baby Falcons’ record six straight title run under coach Charlie Dy that ended in 1993.

Finals MVP Mark Esperanza fired 9 of his 13 points in the first half where the Baby Falcons built a 43-32 lead. He averaged 9.3 points, 3.3 rebounds, 3.7 assists, and 2 steals in the best-of-three series.

“We worked hard for this,” Esperanza said in Filipino. “We listened to our coaches and trusted each other. We didn’t give up until the final buzzer.”

Graduating player JC, Bonzalida dropped a double-double of 15 points and 10 rebounds to pace the Baby Falcons, who made sure there would be no meltdown this time after blowing a 15-point lead in their 67-64 Game 2 loss against the Bullpups. Adamson took Game 1 in another tight decision, 77-71.

Tebol Garcia, a member of the Mythical Team, also scored 15 in his final game with the Baby Falcons.

Ang sarap ng pagkakapanalo nito (This win felt good),” said Adamson coach Mike Fermin.

Nigerian Collins Akowe, the season MVP, led the Bullpups with 18 points, 13 rebounds, 3 assists, and 2 blocks while Mac-Mac Alfanta (16 points) and Klein Tagotongan (12 points) also finished in double-digits.

The Scores

Adamson 90 – Bonzalida 15, Garcia 15, Esperanza 13, Perez 11, Reyes 10, Carillo 9, Medina 8, Umali 5, Sajili 4, De Jesus 0, Baluyut 0, Artango 0, Palacpac 0.

NU 73 – Akowe 18, Alfanta 16, Tagotongan 12, Solomon 8, Yusi 7, Palanca 6, Barraca 3, Cartel 2, Reroma 1, Pillado 0, Usop 0, Nepacena 0, Napa 0, Herrera 0, Figueroa 0, Alejo 0.

Quarters: 24-15, 43-32, 62-53, 90-73.

– Rappler.com

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