CEBU CITY – The reigning champion University of the Visayas bounced back from a shocking loss during opening weekend by pummeling University of Cebu, 72-61, on Sunday in the 17th Cesafi men’s basketball tournament at the New Cebu Coliseum.
After suffering a 73-78 loss to the University of San Carlos Warriors last weekend, the Green Lancers came with a renewed commitment to playing both ends of the floor.
They got terrific performances from Tristan Albina and Jerome Napao to spark their offense and held the Webmasters’ locals in check to even their record out at 1-1.
Albina, a sophomore guard from Dumaguete City, led UV with 17 points while Napao had 11 points and seven rebounds.
The Green Lancers gained their rhythm in the second with a 14-2 run that was sparked by Albina and Napao for a 34-23 lead. UC rallied and trimmed the deficit to three, 31-34, behind point guard Michael Gonzaga but the Green Lancers pushed it back to nine as they finished the half with back-to-back triples from Albina and Jiesel Tarrosa.
The Webmasters once again threatened at 42-46 but the Green Lancers held their ground and retaliated with eight unanswered points – a three-pointer by Napao, a flip shot by Liberian forward Bassiere Sackour and another triple by Josue Segumpan – to push their lead back to 12 points, 54-42, with 2:38 left in the third.
Cameroonian big man Frederick Elombi struggled and went 6-for-18, finishing with 15 points for UC, which dropped to 1-1. The Webmasters import was especially horrendous from the free-throw line, missing all but three of his 10 attempts.
UV 72 — Albina 17, Napao 11, Segumpan 9, Sackour 8, Suerte 7, Maestre 6, Soliva 6, Testa 4, Tarrosa 3, Cabahug 1.
UC 61 — Elombi 15, Codilla 9, Tagudin 7, Dela Cruz 6, Jabello 6, Naong 6, Gonzaga 5, Puerto 4, Kishimoto 3.
Quarterscores: 20-17; 40-31; 56-49; 72-61.