UNIVERSITY of the Philippines advanced to the Final Four of the 2019 Philippine Collegiate Champions League after ruling the Luzon Regional Championship.
The Fighting Maroons completed a three-game sweep on its group over the weekend with a 78-75 win over Diliman College on Tuesday at Jesse M. Robredo Coliseum in Naga.
UP had to sweat it out after losing a 74-65 lead with four minutes left to play.
Kevine Gandjeto banked a short stab to cut the Blue Dragons' deficit to one, 74-73, with 1:22 to play, but James Spencer responded with a booming three to bring the lead back up to four, 77-73, with 1:01 remaining.
Gandjeto capitalized on a mad scramble, scoring a basket with 40.3 left, but Bright Akhuetie gave the Fighting Maroons a bit of a breathing room as he split his freebies with 19.8 ticks left to make it a 78-75 affair.
Diliman could not capitalize on its chances late as UP escaped with the tight three-point victory and book its seat in the semifinals.
The Fighting Maroons earlier drubbed Annunciation College of Bacon Sorsogon, 94-44, and Naga College Foundation, 83-45.
UP joins Ateneo in the semifinals set Feb. 22 and 23 in Davao.
University of Santo Tomas and San Beda face off on Saturday for the last spot allocated for the UAAP-NCAA Challenge, while the last ticket got to the winner of the Escandor Cup Vis/Min Championship set February 17 to 20, also in Davao.