University of the Philippines broke away in the second half to put away University of Santo Tomas, 78-60, on Wednesday at the SM Mall of Asia Arena.
UP maintains their position at the top of the standings at 11-2, bouncing back from their loss against De La Salle University, while UST slipped to 1-11 in their 11th straight loss.
In the succeeding game, National University, now 9-4, lost to DLSU, which assured State U a twice-to-beat advantage and at least a playoff for the number one spot in the Final Four.
The Fighting Maroons were up by just three at the half but scored 22-15 in the third quarter to create a 10-point separation, 59-49, heading into the fourth.
To open the final frame, UP came up with 11 unanswered points from JD Cagulangan’s basket, and three consecutive triples from Carl Tamayo, RC Calimag, and Cyril Gonzales for a 70-49 advantage with 7:33 left. It was all
Tamayo was efficient from the Maroons as he led the team with 19 points and nine rebounds and was a +22 despite playing just 17:28 minutes. Gonzales contributed 14 points, while Malick Diouf chipped in 10 points and grabbed 14 rebounds along with six assists, two steals, and a block.
Nic Cabañero carried UST with 14 points and seven rebounds while Adama Faye had a double-double of 12 points and 11 rebounds.
UP 78 — Tamayo 19, Gonzales 14, Diouf 10, Cagulangan 8, Lucero 6, Abadiano 4, Galinato 4, Spencer 3, Ramos 3, Calimag 3, Alarcon 2, Torculas 2, Lina 0, Eusebio 0, Andrews 0.
UST 60 — Cabañero 14, Faye 12, Calimag 7, Pangilinan 6, Manalang 6, Laure 4, Mantua 4, Manaytay 3, Magdangal 2, Garing 2, Herrera 0, Escobido 0, Gesalem 0.
Quarter Scores: 15-16, 37-34, 59-49, 78-60.