UAAP Basketball

Balanced team basketball carries Adamson HS to first twice-to-beat UAAP Final 4 berth

JR Isaga

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Balanced team basketball carries Adamson HS to first twice-to-beat UAAP Final 4 berth

RISE AS ONE. Members of the Adamson Baby Falcons in the UAAP Season 86 boys basketball tournament

With no player in the UAAP's top 10 scoring list, star-less Adamson high school is taking its team-wide dominance straight to the Final Four, now armed with the first of two twice-to-beat advantages

MANILA, Philippines – Good old team basketball is alive and well in the UAAP Season 86 boys basketball tournament.

Amid a promising field populated with high school standouts like La Salle-Zobel’s Kieffer Alas, Ateneo’s Kristian Porter, and Nazareth-NU’s runaway MVP candidate Collins Akowe, it is the star-less Adamson Baby Falcons who are dominating their way to the Final Four with no signs of slowing down.

Now armed with the first of two twice-to-beat advantages after a 74-59 rout of La Salle on Sunday, January 21, the San Marcelino prospects have bullied their way to the top, currently with an 11-1 record, without a single player in the league’s top 10 scoring list.

Justine Garcia leads the Falcons’ way with modest team-high averages of 12.6 points, 4.8 assists, and 1.8 steals in head coach Mike Fermin’s impressively balanced rotation.

Only third-leading scorer Earl Medina is averaging more than 24 minutes per game, and 10 of Adamson’s 16 talented young men are clocking in at least 10 minutes per contest.

For Fermin, staying within the team concept of playing is key to both executing their game plans and preparing for their foes, as evidenced with how he prepared for their most recent game.

“Actually, we prepared for La Salle-Zobel, not Alas,” Fermin said after Alas sat out Sunday’s game against Adamson. “I said it’s going to be harder to defeat Zobel because we don’t know who will take the shots.”

“At least the boys quickly adjusted defensively, and we’re glad we got the twice-to-beat.”

Other teams with their own wealth of talent are also on the inside track to the Final Four, namely Akowe’s NU (10-2), UST (7-5), and defending champion FEU-Diliman (7-5).

With the elimination round winding down only UE (5-7) has a slim chance of booking one of the latter two seeds as it can still finish with a 7-7 record while hoping that UST and FEU lose all their remaining games to force a three-way standings tie.

Porter’s Ateneo (4-8), Alas’ La Salle (3-9), and top-heavy UP (1-11) are already out of the running. – Rappler.com

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