Photo by Cleverlyn Mayuga
Text by Selina Jo Paredes
After surviving a late game thriller against the Far Eastern University (FEU) Tamaraws, the University of the Philippines (UP) Fighting Maroons failed to overcome the Adamson University (AdU) Soaring Falcons, 70-86, today at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The Maroons were plagued by foul trouble all throughout the game. The Soaring Falcons had a huge advantage in the charity stripe, hitting 25-of-28 free throws while UP only had 8-of-10.
Both teams went back and forth in the first frame with all of UP’s starters contributing a bucket, but careless defense made the Soaring Falcons a frequent visitor on the stripe.
Despite this, State U managed to keep their opponents at bay by being down just a point at the end of one, 17-18.
UP committed an early turnover in the second frame, but Maroon Kyles Lao secured a jumper to give State U their second lead, 19-18.
State U found themselves once more in the penalty late in the second and failed to fend an onslaught from Soaring Falcon Papi Sarr late in the frame. At the half, UP trailed by eight points, 31-39.
It was all Adamson in the third as they went on a scorching 13-0 run, leading by as much as 19 until UP skipper Paul Desiderio broke the Maroons’ scoring drought by shooting a pair of free throws. UP ended the quarter down, 50-69.
Determined to get back in the game, State U sparked a 10-0 run early in the fourth led by Desiderio, Gomez de Liano and Jun Manzo to narrow the gap within eight, 66-74.
However, UP could not overcome their cold shooting as they were nailed to 66 points in the closing minutes of the fourth.
In a last ditch effort, Jaboneta made both free throws and Gelo Vito made a bucket to end the game, 70-86.
“I was looking for a reason what numbers they were ahead of… I saw that they attempted 28 free throws out of our 10. It may say a lot about how badly [we] defended because ang dami naming fouls.” UP Head Coach Bo Perasol said on the disparity of free throws in the game.
Three Maroons scored in double figures with Desiderio leading the way with 20 points followed by Manzo with 15, and Javi Gomez De Liano packaged the double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds.
Papi Sarr led the way for Adamson with 25 points and 17 boards.
Dropping to fifth place with a 5-7 record, UP will go up against the still undefeated Ateneo Blue Eagles in a crucial game this Wednesday to stay in contention.