FEU rallies to stall EAC, makes FilOil quarters

Ron Dennison tries to split through the EAC defense. Rejj Sibayan
By Ivan Saldajeno

SAN JUAN, MM--FEU banked on a second half surge to beat an upset-seeking EAC squad, 69-64, in a pivotal FilOil Flying V Preseason Premier Cup at the FilOil Flying V Arena on Friday.

Trailing by as much as 11 in the first half and playing the rest of the game without Roger Pogoy, who suffered a head injury in the first quarter, the Tamaraws, led by Monbert Arong and Ron Dennison, crawled their way back and led, 60-53, with 4:35 left in the game.

The Generals stayed in the game and were within three, 60-63, with 1:52 left, but Arong made two crucial baskets down the stretch to secure the win that catapulted the Tamaraws to the quarterfinal round.

Arong and Dennison each scored 12 points for FEU, which will finish in fourth place in Group A at 5-3. Despite NU having a chance to tie FEU in the standings on Saturday, the latter will still move on to the playoffs by virtue of the winner-over-the-other rule. FEU won in overtime against NU in their meeting.

Hamadou Laminou made 23 points, seven rebounds, and a block, while Sidney Onwubere added 19 markers, ten boards, and a steal for EAC, which ended its campaign with a 1-7 card.

Box Scores:

FEU 69-Arong 12, Dennison 12, Jose 9, Orizu 9, Bienes 8, Comboy 5, Trinidad 4, Tolomia 3, Pogoy 2, Delos Santos 2, Denila 2, Ugsang 2, Inigo 0, Holmqvist 0, Roxas 0, Tamsi 0

EAC 64-Laminou 23, Onwubere 19, Pascua 9, Pascual 4, General 3, Morada 3, Corilla 2, Mbang 1, Estacio 0, Mejos 0

Quarterscores: 10-15, 25-35, 46-48, 69-64