Adamson Falcons rip UST to clinch Final Four spot, slam door on UP and NU
Adamson Falcons ecstatic after making the UAAP Final Four for the first time in five years. Jaime Campos

ADAMSON broke loose in the fourth quarter to clobber University of Santo Tomas, 76-61, and complete the Final Four cast in the UAAP Season 79 men's basketball tournament. 

The Falcons improved to 7-5 (win-loss), which was enough to slam the Final Four door on National University and University of the Philippines. 

Robbie Manalang and Jerrick Ahanmisi led the way with 16 points apiece for Adamson, which joins La Salle, Ateneo, and Far Eastern University in the Final Four - its first in five years.

The Growling Tigers, who were held to just 11 points in the final period, reeled to a 3-10 card in a dismal first season under coach Boy Sablan. 

With the playoff berth in their minds, the Falcons turned a slim 56-50 third quarter lead into a 67-52 buffer halfway through the fourth period. 

UST, whose key players Louie Vigil, Kent Lao, and Marvin Lee were fielded in only in the second half, just couldn't keep up with the Falcons from there. 

"I think right now we're living the drem. I think we surprised a lot of basketball fanatics," said Adamson coach Franz Pumaren, whose team will enter the playoffs for the first time since Season 74.

Jan Sheriff paced the Tigers with 13 points, while Kent Lao added 12. 

The Scores:

ADAMSON 76 – Manalang 16, Ahanmisi 16, Manganti 9, Tungcab 8, Sarr 7, Mustre 7, Ochea 6, Espeleta 4, Bernardo 2, Camacho 1, Paranada 0, Chua 0, Ng 0

UST 61 – Sheriff 13, Lao 12, Basibas 8, Vigil 6, Macasaet 6, Huang 4, Caunan 4, Afoakwah 3, Arana 3, De Guzman 2, Faundo 0, Lee 0, Subido 0

Quarterscores: 21-19, 37-32, 56-50, 76-61

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