La Salle solidifies grip on 4th place, downs UPBy Celest R. Flores
MANILA, Philippines—La Salle tightened its hold of the fourth spot as it got a boost off a 76-69 win over University of the Philippines Thursday in the 75th UAAP men’s basketball tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Almond Vosotros continued his consistent showing in the second half, finishing with 21 points—including a dagger of a trey as the shot clock expired with 1:18 to go, which gave the Archers a safe 75-66 lead.
Jeron Teng scored all but three of his 19 points in the first half for La Salle, which improved to 7-4 and a one game ahead of another final four hopeful National University (6-5).
It’s a crucial stretch in the second round for the Green Archers bid for that spot in the semis as they meet with the Bulldogs in their ensuing game.
La Salle was wary of the upset-minded UP immediately halting the Maroons run late, which put them trailing 45-48, in the third quarter and keeping a safe distance in the fourth quarter.
“We’re very happy because we gained some separation from NU,” said head coach Gee Abanilla.
Vosotros, who went 3-of-6 from downtown and scored 14 points in the fourth quarter, gave the Green Archers a 67-56 lead, which was enough to withstand a mini-rally by UP behind Mike Silungan.
Silungan led UP, which reeled to its 10th loss of the season, with 12 markers while Jet Manuel added 12 points.