THE UST Growling Tigers suffered a heart-wrenching defeat on Wednesday, Oct. 4, losing by just three points, 79-76, in an overtime match against the Adamson Soaring Falcons at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Victory remained elusive for UST, which absorbed its second consecutive loss in the UAAP Season 86 men’s basketball tournament.
The Tigers trailed by seven points at the end of the first quarter, 20-13.
However, an impressive eight-point streak by Tigers Echo Laure, Vincent Ventulan and Migs Pangilinan ignited a comeback for UST, narrowing the deficit to a mere four points before the end of the first half, 40-36.
The España-based squad gained momentum as the game progressed to the third frame, reducing the lead to one with Pangilinan’s consecutive three-pointers, 52-51.
In the fourth quarter, a series of back-to-back baskets by the Tigers gave them a three-point lead, 57-54, courtesy of UST co-captain Nic Cabañero and forward Angelo Crisostomo’s clutch plays, as well as Pangilinan’s threes.
An intense shooting battle ensued as the two teams exchanged baskets in the last five minutes of the game, in which the Soaring Falcons held a slim two-point advantage until Cabañero’s last-second layup forced the game into overtime.
The San Marcelino-based team embarked on a dominant 7-0 run during the final two minutes of the overtime period. Cabañero’s late-game heroics and Pangilinan’s contested potential game-tying three-point were not enough to stop Adamson’s victory.
Migs Pangilinan led UST with 18 points, five rebounds and one assist.
Soaring Falcon Ced Manzano tallied 16 markers, seven boards and two dimes.
The UST Growling Tigers will try to snap its losing streak in its match against the DLSU Green Archers on Sunday, Oct. 7, at the Mall of Asia Arena. F