MIKEE Reyes scored a career-high 28 points as University of the Philippines finally ended a losing slide spanning close to two years with a 77-64 victory over Adamson on Saturday in the UAAP Season 77 men’s basketball tournament.
JR Gallarza added 24 points, also a career-high, for the Maroons, who won for the first time since a 63-48 victory over the University of the east on August 19, 2012 to snap a 27-game losing skid amid a championship-like atmosphere inside the Mall of Asia Arena.
Thousands of UP supporters gave the Maroons a standing ovation shortly after the team's first victory in seven games this season, which also left the Falcons as the lone winless team in the eight-school field.
A bonfire celebration is also set to be held at the Sunken Garden for what was only the Maroons' second victory over their last 44 games.
The hero of the game was returness Reyes, who sparked the Maroons’ 12-0 run at the start of the third quarter that opened a 52-32 lead. UP's lead reached a high of 24 points, 60-36.
Not even a late Adamson comeback that trimmed UP’s lead to 10 points could dampen the party atmosphere on UP's side of the stands as supporters started chanting, 'bonfire, bonfire' in the final minutes.
Reyes came just one point shy of matching a season-high of 29 points set by Ateneo’s Kiefer Ravena before suffering cramps at the end of the game.
Don Trollano had 24 points and Jansen Rios added 20 for the Falcons.
UP (77) – Reyes 28, Gallarza 24, Lao 10, Juruena 4, Asilum 4, Gingerich 2, Moralde 2, Lim 2, Amar 1, Vito 0, Harris 0.
Adamson (64) – Trollano 24, Rios 20, Monteclaro 5, Nalos 4, Villanueva 3, Inigo 3, Ochea 2, Baytan 2, Polican 1, Barrera 0, Garcia 0, Aquino 0, Pedrosa 0.
Quarterscores: 19-13; 42-32; 66-46; 77-64.