La Salle to duel with familiar faces in game vs UP
La Salle will test a fancied University of the Philippines squad that is anchoring its hopes this year on two players the Green Archers are quite familiar with.
La Salle battles the Maroons in the Filoil Flying V Preseason Cup on Sunday, with UP again unveiling Ricci Rivero and Kobe Paras new recruits who have green roots.
Game time is at 4 p.m. at Filoil Flying V Centre.
La Salle is coming off an opening day win over University of Santo Tomas, 72-49, where the Archers faced former coach Aldin Ayo and ex-reserve Brent Paraiso.
This time, the Archers take on Rivero, who was instrumental in its last title run, and Paras, who once suited up for the school’s junior program.
Rivero and Paras have been picking up the cudgels for the Maroons in the absence of guard Juan Gomez de Liaño.
Rivero is averaging 18.5 points, 5.0 rebounds and 1.5 steals per game thus far in this preseason tournament while Paras is tallying 17.0 points and 5.0 boards per game.
“I don’t think that it will be any different from last year when Ricci and Kobe played for the Gilas Cadets against La Salle,” said La Salle head coach Gian Nazario. “It is just another game. No different. We come out and play anyone.”
The Maroons tote an even 1-1 card thus far. UP lost to San Beda, 75-66, in its first game before bouncing back to hammer Arellano, 78-69.
“This is a good test for us,” UP coach Bo Perasol said. “We don’t have our entire roster as some are out with minor injuries, but we are seeing others step up such as James Spencer and that is what we want.”
In other seniors hoops matches, National University makes its preseason tournament debut when it takes on unbeaten Letran (2-0) at 2 p.m., while Centro Escolar University takes on the Tigers at 5:45 p.m.
At 11 a.m., Ateneo continues its rebuilding stage in the post-Kai Sotto era when it faces Adamson in the lone high school match of the day.
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