The Falcons got an early statement win, defeating the FEU Tamaraws handily early and often in this 78-59 win. Adamson started 12-5 and never looked back, despite repeated FEU rallies. The Tamaraws got within six late in the second period, and then within three in the fourth, but the Falcons never lost their composure, answering the scoring runs with bursts of their own. Alex Nuyles top-scored for the Falcons with 22 points, while RR Garcia came off the bench for 20, but the battle was won on the boards, as Adamson tallied 13 more rebounds and got 18 additional second-chance points. (Recap here)
What's at Stake:
- With five games remaining in the elimination round, Adamson stands pretty confident with a 7-2 record. In all likelihood, the Falcons need just beat UE and UP, and then topple either FEU or UST to secure the #2 seed. Then that just leaves Ateneo as the endgame, with the potential to stop a possible stepladder format by dealing them a loss on the last game for both these teams in the elimination round.
- FEU broke a three-game slide, boosting them up over .500 to land at 5-4. Injuries have devastated this team's ability on both offense and defense, but with RR Garcia likely settling into a groove after his clutch performance versus UP, you still can't count these guys out, especially if they deal Adamson a loss.
ADU Player to Watch : Teams have keyed in on Lester Alvarez as the engine that makes the Falcons go, but Adamson has a starter-quality point guard backing him up in Jerick Canada, who has shown that he is just as capable of taking over games as Alvarez. With the latter being held to 0 points versus NU, Canada stepped up and delivered nine points, six rebounds and three assists. Versus FEU, Canada had just five points in the first round, but he also had five assists, including a pair of alley-oops that sealed the win in the final period.
FEU Player to Watch : Head coach Bert Flores finally saw what other people saw long ago with Terrence Romeo: last season's rookie of the year is not made to handle the ball. So Flores made Garcia the primary ball handler in the fourth quarter and the Tams took off, allowing them to buck a 16-point UP lead. The problem is though, Romeo isn't an attractive catch and shoot option either. He's making just 24.18 percent of his shots this season, and should probably hand Cris Tolomia more of his minutes when you think about it.
Prediction: ADU Falcons