The Perpetual Help Altas celebrate after winning the 20th Fr. Martin Cup. Handout photo.
MANILA, Philippines – Juneric Baloria and Nigerian big man Akhuetie Bright each scored 17 points as the University of Perpetual Help Altas defeated the University of Santo Tomas (UST) Growling Tigers, 65-56, to clinch the men’s basketball crown of the 20th Fr. Maritn Summer Cup.
The Altas earned their first crown after two previous attempts, and it came after the Adamson University Baby Falcons won the championship in the junior division.
Harold Arboleda put the Altas in front with a three-pointer at the 9:18 mark that broke a 46-all tie.
This unleashed an 8-0 run that the Altas built through Joel Jolangcob’s lay-up off an Arboleda assist, two charities from Bright, and a Baloria drive.
The injury-struck Growling Tigers, who missed two key players, could not keep up as Bright seized control of the boards.
Earl Thompson’s basket from close-range and a three-point play from Bright pushed the Altas further ahead, 61-50, in the final 5:30 of the game.
The Altas squandered a 39-28 halftime lead after UST came up with a 16-7 scoring run thanks to Karim Abdul and Louie Vigil.
Kent Lao’s two charities towards the end of the period allowed UST to cut the lead to two points, 44-46.
Abdul led the Growling Tigers with 17 points, while Aljon Mariano had nine markers, and Paolo Pe and Vigil had seven points each.
In the juniors game, it was Miguel Sasuma and Gerard Fernandez who led the way for the Baby Falcons with 16 and 13 points, respectively, as they beat the San Beda Red Cubs, 80-71.