Archers, Tams duel for last Final 4 slotBy Jasmine W. Payo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
Far Eastern University tries to save a once promising season when the Tamaraws dispute the last UAAP Final Four berth against La Salle in a playoff match in the men’s basketball tournament today.
The Tamaraws—who just two weeks ago were even in contention for the No. 2 seed—remain confident against the Green Archers in their knockout duel at 3:30 p.m. at Mall of Asia Arena.
“We still have a positive mindset,” said FEU coach Bert Flores.
The winner will go up against four-time champion Ateneo, the top seed toting a twice-to-beat advantage, in the Final Four starting on Saturday.
FEU and La Salle were left to battle for the last semifinal berth after National University claimed the No. 3 spot due to a superior quotient.
All three squads wound up tied at the end of the eliminations at 9-5 behind Ateneo (12-2) and University of Santo Tomas (10-4).
The Tigers, who also secured a twice-to-beat edge, clash with the Bulldogs in the other semifinal pairing.
La Salle coach Gee Abanilla said his Archers will make the most out of the opportunity to return to the Final Four after missing out last year.
“We cannot relax at this point,” said Abanilla, who’s relying on Jeron Teng, this season’s top rookie, and the resurgent Almond Vosotros.
“We’ve had ambitions to be in this situation. We’ve reached this far, so physically and mentally, we can’t afford to relax.”
Flores hopes that ace guards RR Garcia and Terrence Romeo can lead the team back to its winning form after the Tamaraws closed out their elimination run with back-to-back losses.