MANILA, Philippines – Arellano University claimed a second consecutive crown in the men's division, University of the East (UE) took its first women's plum, and National University (NU) ruled the juniors division anew at the conclusion of the 22nd Fr. Martin Cup recently.
Jiovani Jalalon and Lervin Flores scored the crucial baskets for the Chiefs as they outlasted the Adamson University Falcons, 84-79, in the senior finals.
Kenneth Miranda and Rob Manalang each scored 12 points for the Falcons, who trimmed Arellano's 10-point lead, 64-74, to just one off JD Tungcab's three-pointer, 75-76.
But Jalalon's jumper and two charities gave the Chiefs a more comfortable lead, 80-76, with 2:13 left. Adamson flubbed chances to trim the deficit, and Flores' split at the line made it 81-76 with 31.5 seconds left and held on for the win.
"Bihira mangyari ang mag-back to back title kami," said Arellano coach Jerry Codinera. "Grabe ang laban. Pahirap ng pahirap. Lahat ng best teams kasi ng NCAA, nandito."
(READ: Even Coach E had to admit, Jalalon a man amongst boys)
Codinera praised Flores and Zach Nichols for their work on defense, especially as Flores helped contain Adamson big man Papi Sarr.
Daniel Atienza, meanwhile, scored seven of his 11 points in overtime to power the NU Bullpups past the Adamson Baby Falcons, 91-83, to win a second consecutive juniors championship.
Atienza redeemed himself after missing two free throws in the last 36.2 seconds that helped the Baby Falcons force overtime, with the score knotted at 79-all.
His two charities with 17.7 seconds left in overtime pushed NU ahead by six, 89-83.
Jason Celis had 29 points and Jerry Abadiano added 27 for the Baby Falcons.
"Trumabaho ang mga bata," said acting NU coach Leo Pujante. "Dumepensa sila nang maayos kaya nakuha ito. Malayo pa ang UAAP, kaya magandang preparation ito."
In the women's division, Ruth Tacula had 21 points, and Love Joy Domingo and Eunique Chan combined for 35 for the UE Lady Warriors as they downed the Adamson Lady Falcons, 74-70, and win their maiden women's crown.
Chan's timely plays, which included a split at the line and a putback in the last two minutes, allowed UE to keep ahead.
"The girls are learning to play under pressure," said UE coach Aileen Lebornio.
For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website.