UAAP Basketball

La Salle stays alive, spoils UP party in strong Game 2 fightback

Delfin Dioquino

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La Salle stays alive, spoils UP party in strong Game 2 fightback

TOP GUNS. La Salle stars Kevin Quiambao (left) and Evan Nelle react after a play against UP in Game 2 of the UAAP men’s basketball finals.


La Salle completely turns its game around, dominating UP in Game 2 as the Green Archers force a sudden death for the UAAP men’s basketball championship

MANILA, Philippines – Absorbing one of the worst losses in UAAP finals history hardly discouraged the La Salle Green Archers.

La Salle stays alive, spoils UP party in strong Game 2 fightback

La Salle dragged the UP Fighting Maroons to a winner-take-all clash after tying the Season 86 men’s basketball finals with a resounding 82-60 victory at the Araneta Coliseum on Sunday, December 3.

Francis Escandor and Joshua David hit the lights out from deep for the Archers, who bounced back with aplomb after being mauled by 30 points in Game 1 to knot the best-of-three series at 1-1.

Escandor and David hit four three-pointers each and finished with 14 and 12 points, respectively, as La Salle rediscovered its touch following a woeful 2-of-23 shooting from downtown in their 97-67 loss in the finals opener.

The Green Archers sank 12 of their 38 three-pointers this time. 

“We just gave UP a good fight. The players really wanted it this afternoon,” said La Salle head coach Topex Robinson. “These guys really played with their hearts out and they did their job. I’m happy for them.”

On the day he officially got crowned the season MVP, Kevin Quiambao delivered on both ends and posted 9 points, 11 rebounds, and 3 blocks to help the Archers stay alive in their first finals appearance since 2017.

La Salle stays alive, spoils UP party in strong Game 2 fightback

Quiambao came off the bench as La Salle stared at a 2-12 deficit before they slowly but surely clawed their way back into the game, with Escandor and David coming up with timely hits in the middle quarters.

CJ Austria supplied 11 points and 5 rebounds in the win, Michael Phillips put up 9 points, 13 rebounds, and 2 blocks, while Mark Nonoy added 8 points for the Archers as the Maroons saw a complete turnaround in the game where they missed all their field goals for a 10-minute stretch in the second quarter. 

Bucking his shooting woes, Archers star Evan Nelle netted just 4 points as he missed 10 of his 12 field goals, but he still posted a double-double of 12 rebounds and 10 assists on top of 5 steals and a block.

Malick Diouf churned out 11 points, 11 rebounds, and 2 blocks for UP, which suffered its worst loss of the season.

Diouf dropped 10 points in the first quarter as the Maroons built a 27-24 lead before they unravelled – an uncharacteristic turnaround from the team that coasted to the most lopsided win in a finals opener in the Final Four era.

La Salle and UP will fight for the crown in a winner-take-all Game 3 on Wednesday, December 6. (SCHEDULE: UAAP Season 86 basketball)

The Maroons will try one more time to claim their second title in three seasons, while the Archers will aim to complete their comeback from a 0-1 series deficit for their first championship in seven years.

La Salle stays alive, spoils UP party in strong Game 2 fightback
The Scores

La Salle 82 – Escandor 14, David 12, Austria 11, Quiambao 9, M. Phillips 9, Nonoy 8, Macalalag 7, Cortez 6, Nelle 4, B. Phillips 2, Manuel 0, Abadam 0, Policarpio 0.

UP 60 – Cansino 11, Diouf 11, Alarcon 10, Lopez 9, Cagulangan 6, Felicilda 6, Torculas 4, Abadiano 3, Belmonte 0, Torres 0, Alter 0, Pablo 0, Gonzales 0, Briones 0.

Quarters: 24-27, 44-38, 65-49, 82-60.


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Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.