UAAP: NU shuts down RJ Abarrientos, FEU to end skid | Inquirer Sports

UAAP: NU shuts down RJ Abarrientos, FEU to end skid

/ 01:05 PM April 02, 2022

National U's Mike Malonzo. UAAP PHOTO

National U’s Mike Malonzo. UAAP PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines — John Lloyd Clemente and Mike Malonzo came to the rescue as National University pulled off a come-from-behind 73-68 victory over Far Eastern University, spoiling RJ Abarrientos 33-point burst in the UAAP Season 84 men’s basketball tournament on Saturday at Mall of Asia Arena.

Malonzo delivered five straight points in the Bulldogs’ 11-2 run to fight back from 64-60, building a 71-66 breather with 38.0 seconds to go in the fourth quarter.

NU locked down Abarrientos to just three points in the payoff period and limited FEU to just one field goal in the last five minutes to end its two-game skid and improve to 2-2.


Clemente showed the way for the Bulldogs with 18 points, including the two free throws that completed their comeback win, and had nine rebounds and six assists.

Malonzo was also instrumental with 14 points and seven boards, while Shaun Ildefonso added 13 markers and six rebounds before fouling out in the fourth quarter.

“At least our veterans have finally stepped up. They were the missing link in our past three games,” said NU head coach Jeff Napa. “We emphasized the need of leadership for this young team. They played as good role models today and our rookies followed their lead.”

FEU's RJ Abarrientos. UAAP PHOTO

FEU’s RJ Abarrientos. UAAP PHOTO

Abarrientos fired eight triples to unleash 33 points but missed the baskets that mattered most in the final seconds of the match as FEU suffered its third straight defeat in four games.


“We told each other that RJ has scored too much. The kid can really play. But we noticed that once we shut him down, the momentum will shift on our side. We really defended him until the end of the game,” Ildefonso said.

Royce Alforque had 13 points, three rebounds and three steals for the Tamaraws. L-Jay Gonzales added nine points and six boards only for his team to give up 27 fouls, which allowed NU to shoot 21-of-36 from the charity stripe.


NU takes on Ateneo on Tuesday at 7 p.m, where fans will be welcomed back at MOA Arena. FEU hopes to end its slump against the winless University of the East at 4 p.m.

The Scores

NU 73 — Clemente 18, Malonzo 14, Ildefonso 13, Minerva 9, Felicilda 7, Figueroa 5, Joson 4, Galinato 2, Tibayan 1, Gaye 0, Enriquez 0, Yu 0, Torres 0, Manansala 0, Mahinay 0.
FEU 68 — Abarrientos 33, Alforque 13, Gonzales 9, Bienes 4, Tempra 4, Ojuola 3, Sajonia 2, Torres 0, Coquia 0, Sleat 0, Li 0, Sandagon 0, Celzo 0.
Quarters: 14-18, 32-33, 49-58, 73-68.


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TAGS: john lloyd clemente, NU Bulldogs, RJ Abarrientos, UAAP Season 84

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