UAAP: Aldous Torculas helps UP knock FEU out of Final Four contention
MANILA, Philippines—Aldous Torculas’ career game came at a perfect time as University of the Philippines continued to inch closer to a twice-to-beat advantage in the UAAP Season 86 men’s basketball Final Four.
With the race getting tighter in the elimination round, the Fighting Maroons obliterated Far Eastern University, 81-64, to eliminate the Tamaraws from playoff contention at Araneta Coliseum on Saturday.
Torculas notched a career-high 13-point outing with five rebounds, two assists and two steals to match, pushing the Fighting Maroons into prime position for a twice-to-bear advantage at 10-2.
“I feel blessed and actually, I’m just being patient and I’m just doing my role in helping the team so I’m just going to keep doing what I’m doing, one game at a time,” said the second-year forward.
“I didn’t think of it much, I’m just focused on our goal and the team and of course, it boosts our confidence and we’ll be bringing that confidence every game.”
At the intermission, it looked like it would be a neck-and-neck affair with UP holding a slim 34-27 lead but the third frame would prove to be pivotal for the Season 85 finalists.
The Tamaraws fell victim to a quarter-opening 14-7 UP run that pushed the Fighting Maroons’ advantage to 14.
The fourth quarter proved to be much of the same as UP pushed the lead to 19, 66-47, the biggest of the game after a Chicco Briones jumper at the eight-minute mark.
Francis Lopez finished just a rebound shy of a double-double in the victory with 12 points and nine boards while Harold Alarcon also poured in 11 markers of his own.
The Tamaraws bow out of playoff contention with a 3-9 card but not without the efforts of graduating guard LJay Gonzales, who finished with a game-high 20 points. Jorick Bautista also scattered 17 markers and five rebounds but to no avail.