La Salle rallies past UST in OT to win UAAP title

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MANILA, Oct. 12  -- De La Salle University denied University of Santo Tomas’ shot at history as it reclaimed its basketball glory Saturday night.


The Green Archers rose from 15 points down to shock the Growling Tigers, 71-69, in overtime of Game 3 of the UAAP Season 76 men’s basketball championship before a sellout Mall of Asia Arena crowd.

“Like what I’ve been saying, it’s not about winning the ball game, it’s about improving day by day,” said DLSU head coach Juno Sauler, who remained stoic despite winning the title in just his first year running the sidelines.

“I told them to start the game, it will boil down to every possessions. Knowing there’s still time, we have to slug it out.”

Sophomore star Jeron Teng, who was named Finals MVP, led La Salle with 25 points, including 12 points in the fourth quarter.

Almond Vosotros added 16 points, highlighted by a game-winning jumper, with only 19.7 ticks left in extra time.

Graduating skipper Jeric Teng laid it all out on the floor in his final UAAP game with 24 points, two of those points coming in the final 34 seconds that could’ve given the title to UST.

The Archers, who won their eighth title overall, trailed, 25-40, in the third quarter before drawing a collective effort to come back.

“We started to push the ball and I thought I saw UST were tired,” said Sauler.

“UST had a good game. We just didn’t give up and we fought for the La Salle community,” said La Salle forward Teng.

Karim Abdul topscored with 26 points for the Tigers, who failed to become the first fourth seed to win the crown. Abdul though, missed a three-pointer with 2.3 seconds left as time expired.

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