Tamaraws take crucial loss against NU, lower final four chances

FEU Advocate
November 08, 2023 11:23

Far Eastern University (FEU) Tamaraws  suffered their eighth loss against National University (NU) Bulldogs, 57-68, in the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) season 86 men’s basketball tournament earlier today, November 8, at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City.

The green-and-gold squad started the crucial match with the first ball possession after winning the jump ball against NU.

Despite missing the shot from three, Faty made an offensive rebound, and threw a successful two point basket.

While both teams were answering to each other’s basket, Jorick Bautista’s and-one shot beyond the arc put the Tamaraws in the lead.

NU caught up to FEU with a 6-0 run to end the first period with a three-point lead, 18-21.

The blue-and-gold shirts continued their run to 10, but FEU senior Xyrus Torres swished two consecutive treys to bring down the lead.

Bautista still managed to add another shot from downtown together with Torres’ third trey despite NU’s intensive defense. 

The Tamaraws were yet to claim the lead as the Jeff Napa squad outscored them again in the second quarter, ending the first half at 32-37.

During the second half, the Miranda-led squad struggled to play their offense, which resulted in another run by NU.

FEU team captain LJay Gonzales, who only scored two points in the first half, accumulated a trey and a back-to-back two-point shot to start off the third frame

Blue-and-gold cager Jolo Manansala answered back by successfully throwing a buzzer beater three-point shot to maintain NU’s double-digit lead, 46-58.

Even with James Tempra’s opening jumpshot point in the fourth, the Tamaraws still failed to bring down the lead, ending the match with 11 points behind.

Veteran guard Gonzales led the Tamaraws anew with a double-double performance from 14 points and 11 rebounds. 

In a post-game interview with FEU Advocate, Gonzales mentioned that they need to focus on winning their remaining games.

Dapat ‘yung mga [remaining] games namin ipanalo kasi may chance pa naman kami. Di kami pinalad, marami pa rin kaming natutunan and binibigay naman namin ‘yung best namin, lagi lang talagang short (We should win the [remaining] games because we still have a chance. We were not lucky, we still learned a lot and we gave our best, it was always really short),” he said.

The senior added the sacrifice he exhibited for the team amid being sick during game days on his last playing year.

“Ang hirap maglaro ng may sakit, pinipilit ko lang talaga ‘yung sarili ko. Wala kasing maglalaro sa’min kung hindi ako maglalaro so nagsacrifice na para sa team. Gusto ko den kasi talaga maglaro and manalo kasi next year wala na ako (It's hard to play sick, I'm just forcing myself. No one will play with us if I don't play, so I have sacrificed for the team. I really want to play and win because I won't be here next year),” he disclosed.

Another senior added double digits with Torres’ 11 points which was only scored in the first half.

The Morayta cagers continue to sit in seventh place with a 3-8 win-loss record and will try to climb up in the leaderboards with their upcoming match against the topseed University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons on Saturday, November 11, at the same venue.

-Leiniel A. Santos

(Photo by Jan Dendiego/FEU Advocate)