MANILA, Philippines – Everything just clicked for University of Santo Tomas as skipper Marvin Lee sizzled from beyond the arc and young hotshot CJ Cansino made history as the first rookie since 2003 to post a triple-double.
Lee erupted for a career-high 30 points and Cansino collected 20 points, 14 rebounds and 10 assists as the Tigers blasted the hapless University of the East Red Warriors, 79-68, in the UAAP Season 81 men's basketball tournament at the FilOil Flying V Centre on Sunday, October 28.
The veteran Lee unleashed 8 triples to finish with 30 points, 22 coming in the first half, to power the young Tigers right back in the thick the Final Four race with a 5-5 record.
Cansino – who turned 19 just a day earlier – also sustained his stellar showing and became the first rookie to register a triple-double since computerized league stats started in 2003.
“Masaya siyempre dahil nakuha ko yung trip-dub,” said Cansino. “Sinunod ko lang ang sistema, yung sistema na sharing the ball, lahat gumana. Thankful ako sa sistema dahil nag-fit ito sa akin at nakuha ko ang trip-dub.”
(Of course I’m happy that I got the triple-double. I just followed our system of sharing the ball, everything worked. I’m thankful that I fit into our system that’s why I got the trip-dub.)
Down 26-29 in the 2nd quarter, the trigger-happy Lee paced his squad to a sudden 10-0 run, capping it with a heat check three, 36-29, with 1:24 to go before halftime.
UST used this momentum to pull away from UE in the 3rd. Zach Huang clinched a double-digit lead off a sweet hook, 56-45, at the 2:20 mark of the frame. By then,
UE could no longer match up with UST's energy as the gap remained in double figures for most of the 4th quarter.
"We're playing good defense," sais UST coach Aldin Ayo. "For us, everything starts everytime we make stops."
Alvin Pasaol was again the only bright spot in the loss, tallying 26 points and 7 boards for the Warriors, who absorbed their 10th loss in 11 games.
UST 79 – Lee 30, Cansino 20, Huang 14, Bataller 4, Bonleon 4, Caunan 2, Agustin 2, Mahinay 2, Zamora 1, Marcos 0.
UE 68 – Pasaol 26, Manalang 15, Conner 12, Bartolome 6, Varilla 4, Strait 3, Lacap 2, Guion 0, Beltran 0, Cullar 0, Gallardo 0.
Quarters: 17-19, 39-33, 59-49, 79-68.