Slowly but surely, the Bulldogs of National University are beginning to bare their teeth in the 2018 Filoil Flying V Preseason Cup.
Riding the hot hands of first-year players John Lloyd Clemente and John Galinato and then the broad shoulders of Shaun Ildefonso in the endgame, NU added to the woes of the Gilas cadets with an 86-81 decision on Tuesday at the Filoil Flying V Centre.
Clemente dazzled all game long and delivered 23 points while Galinato made an impact whenever he was on the floor and totaled 20 markers. “We’re maturing right now. As I’ve been saying, this group of young men have the talent and they’re be very good in the coming years, but they are very young,” a more than satisfied head coach Jamike Jarin said post-game.
He then continued, “We need to fast track our maturity so we have to mature every game.”
It was also those two who spearheaded the big-time third quarter surge that erased a nine-point deficit and erected a seven-point advantage in favor of the Sampaloc-based squad.
The national team battled back and even took a five-point lead midway through the final frame, but Galinato connived with Shaun Ildefonso in NU’s 11-0 counter to close the contest for good.
The win is the second in five games for NU.
On the other hand, the loss eliminated the national team from contention as they now hold a 1-5 standing.
Kobe Paras paced them and had a tournament-best 20 points despite exiting the game in the third quarter following a collision with Enzo Joson. Abu Tratter also had 16 markers to his name.
While they will no longer be advancing into the next round, the Gilas cadets still have University of the East, Emilio Aguinaldo College, and Mapua University remaining in their schedule.
Meanwhile, in a battle between UAAP and NCAA powerhouses, Adamson University topped Colegio de San Juan de Letran, 83-80.
Sean Manganti showed the way for the Soaring Falcons with 20 points while Papi Sarr posted his own 13 markers.
Still, the boys from San Marcelino were trailing for majority of the matchup until Jerrick Ahanmisi waxed hot in the final frame and shot his squad into what was eventually a tournament-opening win for them. He wound up with 11 points.
The Knights, who fell to 2-2, were paced by Bong Quinto’s 24 points.
In the day’s other game, University of Sto. Tomas is finally on the win column following a 98-88 grounding of still winless Jose Rizal University.
Renzo Subido starred with 24 points in the Growling Tigers’ first win in three games.
UST 98 — Subido 24, Caunan 13, Cosejo 13, Zamora 13, Cansino 12, Lee 12, Huang 10, Marcos 1, Agustin 0, Lagumen 0.
JRU 88 — Estrella 22, Ramos 12, Dela Rosa 10, Dela Virgen 9, Bordon 8, Perez 7, Padua 5, Mendoza 4, Silvarez 4, Steinl 4, Esguerra 3, Butcon 0, Dulalia 0.
QUARTER SCORES: 22-22, 45-37, 76-58, 98-88.
ADAMSON 83 — Manganti 20, Sarr 13, Ahanmisi 11, Magbuhos 8, Lastimosa 7, Catapusan 6, Espeleta 6, Colinia 5, Mojica 5, Bernardo 2, Camacho 0, Macion 0, Orquez 0, Zaldivar 0.
LETRAN 80 — Quinto 24, Calvo 17, Ambohot 12, Balanza 12, Batiller 11, Muyang 4, Agbong 0, Balagasay 0, Banes 0, Celis 0, Pambid 0, Taladua 0, Yu 0.
QUARTER SCORES: 19-21, 35-42, 59-60, 83-80.
NU 86 — Clemente 23, Galinato 20, Joson 14, S. Ildefonso 13, Aquino 6, D. Ildefonso 4, Mosqueda 2, Tibayan 2, Gaye 1, Yu 1, Diputado 0, Gallego 0, Mangayom 0, Oczon 0, Sinclair 0.
GILAS 81 — Paras 20, Tratter 16, Gomez de Liaño 13, Alejandro 11, R. Rivero 9, Ambohot 4, V. Tolentino 4, Tamayo 2, Tuffin 2, Go 0.
QUARTER SCORES: 21-26, 43-47, 66-63, 86-81.
This story was originally published on the ABS-CBN Sports website.