THE UNIVERSITY of the Visayas (UV) Green Lancers rallied from an 11-point fourth period deficit and nudged past the University of Santo Tomas (UST) Growling Tigers, 90-89, to win the championship in the Kim Lope Asis Mayor’s Cup Basketball Invitational 2017 at the Lope Asis Memorial Gymnasium in the City of Bayugan, Agusan del Sur on Thursday night.
The Green Lancers continued their build-up for their Cesafi title defense in impressive fashion as they didn’t blink in the face of an 11-point deficit in the fourth period. Rey Suerte carried the team to the finish line with a clutch floater with a little over a minute remaining.
The victory netted UV the whopping cash prize of P200,000. UST settled for the runner-up prize of P150,000.
Jerome Napao led the Green Lancers with 16 points while Sackour finished with 14. The point guard duo of Gileant Delator and Sheldon Gahi pitched in 10 apiece.
The Tigers led by 11, 83-72, at the onset of the fourth but lost focus and allowed the Green Lancers to take the lead, 88-87, after two pressure-packed free-throws from Sackour, with 1:51 to go.
After a miss by UST’s Jan Macasaet, Suerte scored on a floater to raise UV’s lead to 90-87, 1:03 remaining.
UST had several chances to tie or even win the game after former University of the East Red Warrior Jordan Sta. Ana scored while getting fouled. However, Sta. Ana muffed the extra free-throw. But the Tigers retained possession after Suerte tapped the ball out of bounds with 12 ticks on the clock.
Sta. Ana tried to save the day for UST but his attempt rimmed out. Macasaet snatched the offensive rebound but his putback also went in and out as time expired.
Sta. Ana led the Tigers with 18 points.
Third place honors was won by the Emilio Aguinaldo College Generals after they thrashed Xavier University, 109-78.