UNIVERSITY of Santo Tomas used a big early run and cruised to victory over Adamson, 78-63, on Wednesday to clinch a twice-to-beat advantage in the Final Four of the UAAP Season 78 men’s basketball tournament at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
The Growling Tigers leaned on a 12-0 start to put the game away early to end the elimination round on a high note with an 11-3 win-loss card.
UST took one of the twice-to-beat incentives in the Final Four, duplicating its feat in 2012. In that year, the Tigers reached the finals but lost to Ateneo. The Tigers also avoided complications of a possible playoff for the No. 2 spot.
Kevin Ferrer had a huge double-double of 25 points and 10 rebounds for the Growling Tigers, who have gone from a team who missed the Final Four last year to reaching the semifinals as one of the twop two seeds.
Ferrer scored 12 in the third quarter to allow UST to maintain its lead.
“Etong twice-to-beat, gustong-gusto naming makuha ’to,” said UST coach Bong de la Cruz. “Siyempre, pinaghirapan namin ‘to.”
Pape Sarr had 12 points and 11 rebounds for the Falcons, who finished the season with a 3-11 win-loss card under first-year coach Mike Fermin.
UST 78 - Ferrer 25, Vigil 15, Daquioag 11, Abdul 9, Lao 6, Bonleon 5, Faundo 4, Lee 3, Abdurasad 0, Arana 0, Caunan 0, Garrido 0, Huang 0, Sheriff 0, Suarez 0, Subido 0.
Adamson 63 - Sarr 12, Capote 10, Ochea 9, Nalos 8, Tungcab 8, Polican 5, Fernandez 4, J. Garcia 3, Villanueva 2, Bernardo 1, Margallo 1, Escalambre 0, C. Garcia 0, Miranda 0.
Quarterscores: 21-14; 37-26; 57-44; 78-63.