THE UST Growling Tigers absorbed their eighth loss in the UAAP Season 86 men’s basketball tournament after stumbling to host UE Red Warriors, 86-73, on Saturday, Oct. 28, at the SM Mall of Asia Arena.
The Tigers are back to a losing slump after dropping their last two games. Last Sunday, UST snapped its 19-game skid in a match against the FEU Tamaraws, 68-62. However, it lost to the DLSU Green Archers in its second round opener, 100-69.
After UST’s late 7-0 run to cut the 20-point UE lead to 13, 83-70, Warrior guard Rey Remogat drained a long bomb to ice the game with 50.8 seconds remaining.
The Recto-based squad had a 10-0 run out at the half led by center Precious Momowei and forward Ethan Galang, who extended their lead to 19 points, 65-46. UST’s first basket in the quarter was a corner three from Vince Ventulan with 2:42 minutes left on the clock. Tiger Nic Cabañero closed the sluggish quarter with a three to cut the deficit to 14 points, 67-53.
UE led from the get-go, coming off a fiery start steered by forward Abdul Sawat, who scored 11 points in the quarter to propel his team to a 29-19 lead in the opening frame.
But the España-based squad did not make it easy for UE as Migs Pangilinan sank three triples to close the second frame gap within four points, 36-32. However, it was not enough to get over the hump as the Tigers trailed by nine points to end the first half, 55-46.
UE big man Momowei steered the team with a monster double-double, tallying 17 points and 18 boards, along with five assists. Sawat finished with 17 markers, four rebounds, and five assists, while Galang had 11 markers off three triples.
Pangilinan had a game-high 20 points and six three-pointers for UST. Cabañero contributed 18 points, six rebounds, and two assists, while Ivanne Calum added 11 markers.
UST remains the cellar dweller of the league with a 1-8 standing. UE, the second worst team, improved to a 3-6 record. The UST Growling Tigers will seek to bounce back after the Undas break against the Adamson Soaring Falcons on Nov. 4 at the same venue. F