UAAP: Melecio carries La Salle past Adamson Soaring Falcons in overtime

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, October 13) — The last game in the first round of the UAAP Season 81 men’s seniors basketball tournament needed five extra minutes to be decided.

The De La Salle University Green Archers handed the Adamson University Soaring Falcons their second straight setback with a 79-78 overtime victory Saturday at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.

Aljun Melecio delivered another clutch performance for DLSU with 22 points and four rebounds.

Unlike in their previous outing, the Green Archers had a better offensive output early in the contest to build a six-point edge at the end of the first quarter.

It was the Soaring Falcons’ turn to make a run as they capitalized on La Salle’s errors, but the Green Archers held the fort and keep the advantage at the break.

Adamson made a spirited rally to grab the driver’s seat for the first time in the third frame.

Down by two points, La Salle’s Aljun Melecio sank a cold-blooded floater to tie the score at 64-all with 13.6 seconds remaining in regulation.

A last-second Sean Manganti corner shot went wide, which sent the game into overtime.

As the Green Archers threatened to pull away, the Soaring Falcons continued to play hard and stay within reach.

In the end, La Salle displayed more composure to get the win.

Adamson has yet to beat the Green Archers under head coach Franz Pumaren.

Jerrick Ahanmisi posted 27 points and seven rebounds, while Manganti added 23 points for the Soaring Falcons.

Twin towers Santi Santillian and Justine Baltazar chipped in 16 points apiece for La Salle.

The Green Archers climbed up to solo fourth in the team standings with a 4-3 win-loss card, while Adamson is in a three way logjam with the Ateneo Blue Eagles and FEU Tamaraws at the top spot with 5-2.