UNIVERSITY of the Philippines claimed another title in the offseason, topping the 2017 Republica Cup collegiate division with a 100-91 win over University of Sto. Tomas on Sunday at the Malolos Sports and Convention Center.
Paul Desiderio was named Most Valuable Player after scoring 36 points in the final match.
The Fighting Maroons won their second crown after ruling the Araw ng Dabaw basketball tournament.
Desiderio scored 20 points in the first half and came up with 12 markers in the fourth in an intense match that saw UP’s Nigerian import Bright Akhuetie ejected.
Juan Gomez De Liano scored 15 points and Jun Manzo added 10 for the Maroons.
The Maroons led, 47-38, at halftime, but UST responded with a run in the third to take the lead, 70-69.
Desiderio opened the fourth by scoring six including a triple in UP’s 9-3 start for a 78-73 lead. Manzo scored a lay-up with 2:13 left in the fourth to give the Maroons a 90-80 lead.
Marvin Lee had 23 points, while Steve Akomo and Renzo Subido each had 16 markers for UST.