CARL Tamayo came up with a clutch three-point play as Nazareth School of National University defeated defending champion Ateneo de Manila, 78-71, in the UAAP Season 81 juniors basketball tournament on Sunday at the Arena in San Juan.
The Bullpups flirted with disaster and squandered a 68-61 lead with three minutes to go as the Eaglets fought back with an 8-2 run capped by Kai Sotto’s triple and Forthsky Padrigao’s lay-up to cut down NU’s lead to just one, 70-69, with a minute remaining.
Tamayo came to the rescue converting a clutch and-one play from a putback to give NU a 73-69 lead with 46.3 seconds left but Padrigao answered with a floater to trim it to a two-point deficit, 73-71. The Bullpups executed great defensive stops that denied the Eaglets from scoring a basket in their last two possessions, with Ernest Felicida nailing his four free throw shots and Terrence Fortea splitting his charities to seal the victory.
Gerry Abadiano and Fortea had 16 points each for NU.
Felicida delivered 14 points, six assists, five rebounds and four steals. Kevin Quiambao had 10 points and seven rebounds, while Tamayo had seven points and nine rebounds.
“I think every time we slowed down the game, advantage napunta sa kanila. We really tried hard to push yung tempo ng game,” said Nazareth School head coach Goldwin Monteverde.
The Bullpups are in solo lead with a 7-1 win-loss record, sweeping the elimination-round matches against the Eaglets.
“It’s just part of the war. We still have six games to go and may semis and finals pa. Importante ngayon, our next game against UST,” said Monteverde.
NU faces UST (4-4) on Wednesday at 1 p.m.
Sotto scored 24 points, going three-for-three from the three-point line, and had 18 rebounds, five assists and three blocks.
Geo Chiu posted 12 points and nine rebounds, while Padrigao, who missed the last six matches in the first round due to appendectomy, also added 12 markers and five rebounds.
The Eaglets dropped to solo third place with a 5-3 record and will try to bounce back against University of the East (1-7) also on Wednesday at 3 p.m.
University of the Philippines Integrated School upset De La Salle-Zobel, 64-56, to finally bag its first win of the season.
The Junior Maroons opened their second round on a rousing note, ending an 11-game skid at the expense of the Junior Archers, the team they last defeated, 71-69 in Season 80 last January 20, 2018.
Rookie Allen Torres led the way for UPIS with 22 points, making four three-pointers. Ralph Labao chipped in 18 points, nine rebounds, six assists and five steals, while John Tuazon added 12 markers.
The Junior Maroons hold a 1-7 record, tying UE Junior Warriors at seventh place.
UPIS faces Adamson (5-3) on Wednesday at 9 a.m.
Jac Macasaet had 18 and 12 rebounds, while Lance Jomalesa had 15 points and 16 rebounds for La Salle Zobel, which dropped to 3-5 card at sixth place.
The Junior Archers battle the FEU Baby Tamaraws (6-2) on Wednesday at 11 a.m.
UPIS 64 - Torres 22, Labao 18, Tuazon 12, Estrera 4, Vergeire 4, Gomez de Liaño 4, Galotera 0, Cordero 0, Lopez 0.
DLSZ 56 - Macasaet 18, Jomalesa 15, Pingol 5, Sevilla 4, Subido 4, Milan 3, Villarin 3, Cudiamat 2, Buncayo 2, Luna 0, Unisa 0.
Quarterscores: 15-12; 23-24; 50-41; 64-56.
NU 78 – Abadiano 16, Fortea 16, Felicida 14, Quiambao 10, Gonzales 8, Tamayo 7, Torres 5, Javilonar 2, Dayrit 0, Mailim 0, Alarcon 0, Enriquez 0.
Ateneo 71 – Sotto 24, Chiu 12, Padrigao 12, Espinosa 8, David 6, Jaymalin 3, Diaz 2, Fetalvero 2, Salandanan 2, Coo 0, Zyrus 0.
Quarterscores: 11-13; 36-35; 57-52; 78-71.