La Salle survives FEU to start UAAP title defense
De La Salle University held on to beat Far Eastern University, 95-90, to start its title-retention bid in the UAAP Season 80 men’s basketball tournament Sunday at Mall of Asia Arena.
The Green Archers erected 23-point lead, 37-14, in the second quarter and were poised to go on cruise control but the Tamaraws were able to slowly chip away deficit.
“For sure we’re going to learn from this,” said La Salle head coach Aldin Ayo in Filipino. “These are the games that we’re sure we’ll learn from especially on improving our composure late into the game.
Ron Dennison and Wendell Comboy nailed back-to-back triples in the final two minutes of the game to cut the deficit to five, 90-85, giving FEU a glimmer of hope.
La Salle, however, was able to hold on and capitalize on FEU’s late miscues.
Aljun Melecio put up a career-high 29 points to lead the Green Archers, who played without big man Ben Mbala.
The reigning UAAP MVP is playing for his country Cameroon in the Fiba Afrobasket.
Dennison had 21 points for FEU while Comboy added 13.
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