UAAP: UP rookie shines as Fighting Maroons close in on top seed | Inquirer Sports

UAAP: UP rookie shines as Fighting Maroons close in on top seed

/ 05:02 PM November 15, 2023

Chicco Briones UP UAAP

UP rookie Chicco Briones.–MARLO CUETO/

MANILA, Philippines — Rookie Chicco Briones was a revelation for University of the Philippines, leading the Fighting Maroons’ big bench production in an 86-61 win over University of Santo Tomas on Wednesday.

Briones tallied a team-high 14 points for UP, which assured itself of at least a playoff for a twice-to-beat advantage in the UAAP Season 86 men’s basketball Final Four.


“It was an opportunity to give my best and I had to take that you know, give my best and put my heart out on the court. And of course, the trust is always there and I just had to give my best and I don’t like I have to show out and to lose that trust from coach,” said Briones.


Briones went 6-of-8 from the field and had four rebounds and a steal in just 14 minutes of action.

“The mindset that I always bring to the game is having that readiness ’cause you don’t really know when you’re gonna go out and like play, you know. Having that mindset, having that readiness mindset, I always gotta have that and to play in this team I always have to have that even if you have those big moments,” he said.

UAAP Season 86 UP

UP Fighting Maroons.–MARLO CUETO/

The victory hiked the Maroons’ record to 11-2, moving one win away from clinching the top seed. UP battles National University in its final elimination round game on Sunday at Mall of Asia Arena.

UP coach Goldwin Monteverde commended Briones for making the most of his opportunity to help the Maroons, who drew 73 bench points and led by as many as 29 points.

“He gave his part like every player on the team will have that kind of attitude, being ready and taking that opportunity at the same time. It’s also about helping your team. So that’s one thing for me as a coach that makes me proud of my players. They’re just being ready,” Monteverde said in Filipino.

Briones said his breakout game is a huge boost for him ahead of their game against NU and the Final Four.


“It’s very big (confidence), It’s a key factor for the upcoming games. And of course, it’s an add-up to my confidence. Coach always says that it’s up to us not to lose that confidence. It’s not up to somebody, it’s up to you. And I always have that confidence and having this game today, it kinda given me that boost,” Briones said.

Cyril Gonzales chipped in 10 points for UP while Mark Belmonte and CJ Cansino contributed nine points each. Francis Lopez had eight points, nine rebounds, and four assists.

UST absorbed its 12th loss in 13 games with Nic Cabañero leading the way with 14 points, six rebounds, three assists, and two steals. Christian Manaytay had 14 points and nine rebounds, while Migs Pangilinan had 13 points and six rebounds.

The scores:

UP (86) – Briones 14, Gonzales 10, Cansino 9, Belmonte 9, Lopez 8, Alter 7, Diouf 6, Felicilda 6, Fortea 6, Alarcon 4, Torres 4, Abadiano 2, Torculas 1, Cagulangan 0, Pablo 0.

UST (61) – Cabañero 14, Manaytay 14, Pangilinan 13, Duremdes 5, Laure 5, Calum 4, Llemit 3, Manalang 2, Moore 1, Crisostomo 0, Lazarte 0, Magdangal 0, Esmena 0.

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Quarterscores: 24-18, 44-32, 69-47, 86-61

TAGS: UAAP Season 86, UP Fighting Maroons, UST Growling Tigers

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