By Claro Manzano
DLSU Green Archers def. FEU Tamaraws 65-57
Santi “Dodong” Santillan, La Salle (12 points and 14 rebounds)
Santillan broke out of his slump in style with a double-double and gave La Salle the cohesion it lacked versus the Adamson Soaring Falcons. He was moved to small forward as La Salle shifted to a big lineup and continuously pounded the ball in. The former UV Green Lancer may have finished with four turnovers but provided clutch rebounds and free throws in the end game. Santillan also went on to assist Melecio’s dagger three with a handoff.
Brandon Bates (7 points, 10 rebounds, and 2 blocks)
The Filipino-Australian not only chipped in baskets in the Lasallians’ 10-0 scoring run in the third but also provided hustle on both ends of the floor. Bates’ energy was clearly evident as he provided a number of second-chance scoring opportunities, was head hunting on screens, and was not hesitant to play physical down low.
Kib Montalbo, La Salle (7 points, 4 assists, 2 steals, and 0 turnovers in 28.5 minutes of play)
Montalbo’s leadership was on full display again in another close-fought win for the Green-and-White. The veteran took over playmaking duties in the second half and kept the tempo of the game in their favor. The Man of Steal’s hustle was also much appreciated by the Lasallian crowd and proved to be a perfect complement to Bates’ energy down in the paint.
Arvin Tolentino, FEU (20 points on 8/15 FGs, 4 rebounds, and 2 assists )
Tolentino emerged as the lone Tamaraw to finish in double figures. The former San Beda Red Cub proved to be difficult to stop as he spaced the floor for FEU with four three-pointers made and connected on drives. He capped off the Tamaraws’ 11-0 run in the third quarter to give them what was their biggest lead at 10, 45-34.
Jasper Parker (6 points and 2 assists)
Parker finished the game tied with Alec Stockton as the Tamaraws’ second-leading scorers. Parker got his midrange game going in transition and in the half court and took the lead in facilitating FEU’s ball movement.
- Both teams started off slowly and had a four-minute scoring drought in the opening quarter. Arvin Tolentino came off the bench to eventually break the dry spell with a layup in the 4:10 mark.
- The Tamaraws relied on a balanced scoring attack throughout the game and constantly found the open man in transition or on the kick out. They went on to outscore La Salle on perimeter points, 32-19.
- The Lasallians, on the other hand, mainly found their offense down low and on second-chance points. Big men Baltazar, Bates, and Santillan found themselves playing together at certain points in the frontcourt to utilize their size advantage. La Salle went on to score 38 points inside as compared to FEU’s 24. The hustle of the La Salle bigs also churned out a 19-8 and 18-4 advantage on offensive rebounds and second-chance points, respectively.
- Aljun Melecio provided the dagger for La Salle with an elbow three at 1:15 mark of the game to ice FEU’s mini-run.