NU Bulldogs claw back from 16 points down and hang on to beat winless Arellano Chiefs
Jjay Alejandro rises up for the layup. Dante Peralta

MATT Salem put up a stellar outing as National University edged Arellano, 82-79, in the Filoil Flying V Preseason Premier Cup on Friday. 

Salem fired 18 points and grabbed three rebounds to help the Bulldogs preserve a perfect 2-0 record. 

The NU forward sparked a 26-5 rally to help the Bulldogs overcome a 37-53 deficit in the third period to take a 63-58 lead heading into the final period. 

But the Chiefs clawed back and even had a couple of chances to send the game into overtime after Zach Nicholls nailed a triple to get within three.

The Bulldogs stifling defense, however, forced Nichols to rush his three-point attempt with 7.4 ticks left to seal the win.

"We just needed to up the level of energy. We have to match their energy. It was evident in the third quarter," said NU coach Jamike Jarin.

Issa Gaye had 11 points, while Jjay Alejandro and Rev Diputado chipped in 10 apiece for NU.

Lervin Flores finished with 15 points, 14 rebounds, and four assists for the Chiefs, who remained listless in two games.

Kent Salado added 14 points, four rebounds, seven assists, and two steals. 

The Scores:

NU 82 – Salem 18, Gaye 11, Alejandro 10, Diputado 10, Flores 8, Bartlett 6, Joson 4, Rangel 4, Abatayo 3, Lastimosa 3, Galvelo 3, Tibayan 2, Yu 0, Morido 0, Mosqueda 0, Aquino 0, Cauilan 0

ARELLANO 79 – Flores 15, Salado 14, Meca 12, Nicholls 11, Enriquez 7, Concepcion 7, Aguila 5, Ongolo Ongolo 4, Padilla 4, Rivera 0, Canete 0, Abanes 0, Villoria 0, De Guzman 0, Cahigas 0, Juico 0, Gupilan 0

Quarterscores: 16-23, 32-39, 63-58, 82-79 

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