Hot Archers shoot down another force in Maroons
La Salle exacted revenge on another first-round conqueror on Sunday by taking down University of the Philippines, 88-79, and muddling up the race for the top two spots in the Final Four of the UAAP Season 86 men’s basketball tournament.
Kevin Quiambao scored 22 points and had 12 rebounds as he led La Salle in dealing the Fighting Maroons their first loss since the end of the first round and dropping them into a first-place tie with National U at Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
“We know coming to this game that UP is gonna be the barometer this season,” coach Topex Robinson said as La Salle stretched its winning streak to four, the run counting another vengeful victory against the Bulldogs. “We just try to remind everybody that this is a test of how far have we come as a team.
“We had a chance the last time we played them in the first round. But things didn’t go our way,” he said of a 67-64 loss. “We came here trying to be the better version of ourselves.”
Now at 7-3, the Archers are a full game behind the 8-2 Bulldogs and Maroons, giving them a solid shot at a twice-to-beat privilege in the Final Four with four games to go for all teams.
“As long as we are gonna get better with every opportunity and treat UP with respect, winning will be the byproduct of what we are doing,” Robinson said.
Meanwhile, things seem to be finally looking up for University of the East (UE), and the Red Warriors are planning to ride this momentum to wherever it takes them.
A week removed from ending a five-game skid, UE kept its Final Four hopes alive with an 87-86 overtime victory over Far Eastern U earlier.
And coach Jack Santiago didn’t mince words in praising his go-to guys.
“[Rey Remogat] and [Abdul] Sawat, these two guys are the leaders of our team. I always tell them that wherever they go, the team will follow,” Santiago said with a mix of Filipino.
Remogat dropped a career-high 34 points, the most by any UE player since Alvin Pasaol in 2018. He also had eight assists and six rebounds in the Warriors’ fourth win in 10 games, now tied with idle defending champion Ateneo at fifth.
Sawat added 20 points and six assists, and the duo had a lot of help in overtime with Jack Cruz-Dumont.
Jorick Bautista finished with 21 points, including three triples in the extension, in a losing effort for the Tamaraws.
UE battles University of the Philippines on Wednesday. INQ