UNIVERSITY of the East finally nailed a victory, beating Adamson, 71-66, on Wednesday in the UAAP men’s basketball tournament at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Roi Sumang, the lone bright spot for the Red Warriors in their previous losses, got ample support from his teammates this time after scoring 18 points, eight assists, and two steals to notch the hard-earned win.
The Warriors dropped their first five games by an average of 20.4 points.
UE coach Jerry Codinera began his postgame interview with a laugh, obviously still on a high now that his beloved Red Warriors had finally won.
“Masayang masaya, hindi ko ma-explain,” said the former PBA star. “We found a way to win.”
Sumang took over down the stretch, scoring eight of the team’s last 10 points after Adamson had sliced the Warriors’ lead that reached as high as 18 points down to three points.
“It’s hard to win when only two or three players are present on offense. Dapat support, and we were able to get that from the bench,” Codinera said.
The Warriors' biggest lead was at 52-34, before the Falcons mounted a comeback and came within three, 61-58.
UE won while playing without center Sam Razon, who suffered a season-ending ACL tear in the team’s previous game against University of Santo Tomas.
The Falcons, losers of three in a row to drop in a tie with the Red Warriors at 1-5, could have easily won the game had they converted more free throws. They were 25-of-48 from the charity stripe.
UE (71) -- Sumang 18, Sumido 12, Belleze 11, Santos 10, Flores 5, Javier 4, Duran 4, Valdez 3, Hernandez 2, Galanza 2, Alberto 0, Mena 0.
ADAMSON (66) -- Cabrera 16, Brondial 15, Cruz 14, Camson 14, Etrone 4, Monteclaro 2, Julkipli 1, Trollano 0, Rios 0, Petilos 0, Olalia 0, Cabigas 0, Abrigo 0.
Quarterscores: 9-9, 30-21, 52-38, 71-66.