Sunday, August 14, 2011

One Day Later: NU vs UE, ADMU vs FEU

A laughing matter - Bobby Ray Parks could afford to whoop it up as the Bulldogs crushed UE (pic source)

NU 91 - UE 51
Recap - - - Preview

Player of the Game : Here's a stat: when Emmanuel Mbe gets nine or more field goal attempts, NU wins. Maybe it's that simply, because at times, the Bulldogs have completely forgotten that they have this powerful big man down low and instead keep giving the ball to Bobby Ray Parks for him to drive into traffic. In this game, Mbe finished with a team-high 21 points on 7 of 14 shooting, while also tallying 16 rebounds.

NU Positives :
  • In the second quarter, NU's defense kicked in (or did UE's poor shooting kick in?), holding the Red Warriors to just 3 of 16 shooting. That 20 to 6 run catapulted the Bulldogs ahead, and the Warriors couldn't play catch up. 
  • Overall, NU played its best defense of the elimination round so far, holding UE to just 51 points and 27.6 percent shooting. Their previous highs were set in the Adamson upset, when they allowed just 56 points and 33.85 percent from the field.
  • It's curious that with guys like Bobby Ray Parks on their line-up, the Bulldogs never broke into double-digit fastbreak points until this game. After norming 7.71 fastbreak points in the first round, NU scored 13.  
NU Negatives :
  • I understand that NU wanted to get back at UE for their first round upset, by I found it a little disrespectful how Coach Altamirano kept Parks and Mbe in their for most of the fourth quarter, despite leading by 31 points entering the period. By the time they sat down, the lead was in the 40s. Had either of them gotten injured because they were kept in there too long, NU's year would have been sunk and Altamirano would have been out on the curb right after the game. 
  • NU came into the game ranked second to the last in terms of turnovers per game, committing an average of 19 errors per encounter. They had six in the first quarter alone, and started the second by committing back to back errors. Any other team would have blitzed them in response and prevented them from getting a lead. In the end, they tallied 23 turnovers, but UE managed just 12 turnover points off them, two only in the first half.

UE Positives :
  • *sound of crickets* 
UE Negatives :
  • Scoring was a huge problem in this game for the Red Warriors, after they got 20 points from Paul Zamar and 19 points from Biboy Enguio in their win against NU in the first round. In this encounter, Zamar was ice cold, 1 of 11, while Enguio was 2 for 7 before exiting early due to his finger-pointing technical foul.  In the end, no Warrior finished with double-digits in scoring.
  • Perimeter defense was an issue again for the Red Warriors, as they gave up 8 of 17 shooting from downtown, part of a whopping 22 points from outside the paint.
  • Because NU kept going down low and driving into the paint (as the "drive" part of their "drive and dish" offense), the Warriors were forced to foul repeatedly, getting 28 whistles blown at them by the refs for 35 NU trips to the line, canning 25.. In contrast, they got only eight charities, converting seven of them.

No panic - the Ateneo coaching staff  piloted the Eagles to an upset win over FEU (pic source)

ADMU 74 - FEU 67
Recap - - - Preview

Player of the Game : After a 0/5 performance in the first half, Kiefer Ravena bounced back in a big way, hitting 5 of 8 shots, including a triple, in the second half, including of course, two huge back to back layups to force overtime. The Phenom then added two charities in the final period to shut the door on FEU, finishing with 15 points, five rebounds and four assists.

ADMU Positives :
  • After RR Garcia nailed a triple to push the FEU lead to six with a minute to go, the Eagles calmly entered their timeout beaten, but not bowed. Out of the break, furious defense allowed them to score just enough to force the five extra minutes, where they dominated.
  • FEU scored 38 points in the first half on 44 percent (16 of 36) shooting, but were allowed just 29 points on 11 of 40 shooting or 27.5 percent after that, as the Ateneo defense kicked in and shut the Tams down.
  • They may not score in droves, but the Ateneo bench provided some timely baskets, with Tonino Gonzaga scoring six to keep Ateneo in it early, and then Justin Chua tallied seven straight in a run that bridged the third and fourth quarters, cutting the deficit to a more manageable three points. 
  • Ateneo kept attacking the rim again, getting FEU into the penalty early in the fourth, and later, slapping enough fouls on Aldrech Ramos to send him packing in overtime. Overall, they got 31 charities and made 20 of them, to just the 8 for 12 of the Tamaraws.
ADMU Negatives :
  • The Eagles came out extremely flat, just 4 for 14 in the first quarter, as they looked lethargic and shell-shocked. 
  • Between missed transition scores by Kirk Long, missed layups by Frank Golla, and missed free throws by Greg Slaughter, the Tams in hindsight, were lucky they managed to get an overtime period, when in truth, Ateneo could have ended the game in regulation with slightly better luck.

FEU Positives :
  • Though still heavily-reliant on jump shots, the Tams at least converted a higher percentage of them in this game, 35.5 percent, compared to just the 27.63 percent they shot in round one. Carl Bryan Cruz and Russel Escoto in particular, seemed to hit nearly every shot they threw up.
  • By running more of their triangle offense sets and pick and pops, the Tams played better team ball, finishing with 17 assists, seven more than last game, which was an exercise in "you shoot, then I shoot"
  • FEU also showed that stopping the Ateneo fastbreak can in fact be done, holding them to just four points in transition. The only other time Ateneo got single-digits in that category was in their season opener against Adamson when they had nine.
FEU Negatives :
  • Terrence Romeo continues to be a team-killer, unfortunately, the team he's slipping a knife between the ribs into is his own. Not only was he content to just chuck up shots, he also committed two boneheaded turnovers late, allowing the Eagles to score back to back and cut the lead down to just a deuce, which led to their forcing of overtime.
  • Once again, the annual internal intrigue that surrounds FEU reared its ugly head, from guys not on the coaching staff wanting timeouts, team managers prematurely celebrating, and one player allegedly in a tiff with a team official, it's just a madhouse over there and it's a shame for some of the talent they have on that roster that they have to play with such brain chaff surrounding them. Gino Jumao-as and Anthony Hargrove might be wondering what they got themselves into.
  • No doubt, people will continue to whine about the supposed goaltend that really wasn't (it had no way of going in, thus, when Greg tapped it against the backboard, it was considered a loose ball, not a shot attempt) but the fact remains: FEU should not have allowed it to go to overtime in the first place. Secondly, the two points didn't really matter when they lost by seven markers!

UAAP Picking Record: 22-8

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