RICCI Rivero scored 20 points and La Salle beat Far Eastern University, 75-73, on Wednesday in the UAAP Season 80 basketball tournament at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
The Green Archers bounced back from a one-point loss to their archrival Ateneo Blue Eagles with a pulsating win over the Tamaraws - their sixth win in eight outings.
The Tamaraws, who played without suspended forward Arvin Tolentino, lost for the second straight time and fell to 4-4.
FEU had a chance to at least tie the match with 2.2 seconds to play but Andrei Caracut stole an inbound pass intended for Prince Orizu.
Rivero added four assists and had five steals.
Ben Mbala scored seven in a 9-0 run to start the third quarter as the Green Archers built a 48-35 lead.
Jollo Go had 14 markers and led a five-point run that gave La Salle some breathing space in the fourth, 72-65.
FEU got within a point following a Hubert Cani triple and a Prince Orizu basket, 74-73, setting up the thrilling finish.
Mbala finished with 18 points and 17 rebounds.
Kenneth Tuffin had 14 points while Cani had a season-high 13 points to go with five rebounds and five assists.
La Salle 75 - R. Rivero 20, Mbala 18, Go 14, P. Rivero 8, Caracut 7, Santillan 3, Tratter 3, Montalbo 2, Paraiso 0, Gonzales 0.
FEU 73 - Tuffin 14, Cani 13, Dennison 10, Parker 9, Ebona 8, Escoto 7, Orizu 7, Inigo 3, Ramirez 2, Stockton 0, Trinidad 0, Comboy 0.
Quarters: 18-13; 39-35; 62-56; 75-73.