By MARIA EDEN T. DINO, CRIS EUGENE T. GIANAN, and VANN MARLO M. VILLEGAS
AFTER A comeback in the finals of this year’s Thomasian Goodwill Games, the Faculty of Arts and Letters (AB) Women’s Basketball Team yielded to the Institute of Physical Education and Athletics (IPEA) during Game 1, 35-77, held Wednesday at the Quadricentennial Pavilion.
Nicole Gutierrez led IPEA with 17 points while Janela Nartates and Tina Penus tallied 14 and 13 points, respectively.
Hershey Pernia is the only player for AB who scored double digits with 22 points.
Turnovers and steals from its opponents halted AB in the first half of the game and allowed IPEA to double its gains, 17-35.
Pernia banked eight points through driving past IPEA players in the third quarter but still failed to trim her team’s disadvantage, 27-57. IPEA took control of the last frame after banking 20 points while allowing AB to score only eight points.
AB team captain Jonne Senga said the team lacked communication and fighting spirit inside the court.
“Kulang kami sa usap sa loob ng court kaya dumami errors namin. Then kulang kami sa fighting spirit na lumaban, napanghinaan agad ng loob at bumitaw agad kami kaya lumayo na nang lumayo ‘yung lamang ng IPEA,” she said.
Finals Game 2 is on Thursday 9 a.m. at the same venue.
Road to finals
AB secured its finals spot after surviving the Senior High School (SHS) Women’s Basketball Team, 52-39, on Tuesday at the P. Noval Court.
Pernia led AB with a season high 27 points while Senga drilled 11 points.
AB secured a 12-point advantage in the first half, leaving SHS with only half its score, 24-12. The Dapitan based-squad maintained its lead early in the third quarter with Pernia breaking through SHS’ defense, 32-14.
However, the momentum shifted to the senior high school students in the third quarter after SHS’ Patricia Pañoso was taken out of the game due to injury. Combined efforts of Kaila Aran, Belle Pascual, and Patricia Valencia surged a 10-0 run, cutting their team’s deficit to three, 36-39.
But Senga banked a trey that stopped SHS’ streak, 42-36. AB took advantage of its lead and continued to display court dominance, pulling a 10-2 run, 52-38. Pascual drilled the last point for SHS from the charity but sill no match to AB.
Senga said entering the finals is overwhelming since there are only two seniors in the team and the rest are already from the lower years.
Last Saturday, AB’s late consecutive treys washed out the Alfredo M. Velayo-College of Accountancy (Accountancy) in the quarterfinals, 52-47, booking the team a ticket in the semifinals.
Stuck in a neck-and-neck battle at 46-45, Senga and Rain Mabanag hit clutch three-point jump shots with only a few ticks left in the match, disabling Accountancy to make a comeback.
Along with Senga who tallied 11 points to secure AB’s victory was Pernia who garnered the highest output for her team with 14 points. F