Monteclaro’s two free throws send Adamson soaring over Perpetual Help
by rick olivares
Wednesday, May 29, 2013
Filoil Flying V Arena
At least for one game, Ryan Monteclaro evoked the toughness and clutch play of Adamson Falcons point guards of the past.
Monteclaro sank two free throws with 3.3 seconds left to lift Adamson to a 79-78 win over the Perpetual Help Altas at the Filoil Flying V Hanes Premier Cup at the Arena of San Juan.
After Lester Alvarez and Jerick Cañada graduated from Adamson, the point guard chores were handed over to Monteclaro last season who admittedly had a difficult time. “Ako na pinaka-veteran last year pero lagi ako nako-compare kina Lester at Jerick. Sinabi ni coach na isa ako sa mga leader dahil ilan kaming veteran ang natira. Alagaan ko muna mga teammate ko. Kailangan lagi mo sila i-set up. Kaya yung mga first games ko, hindi ako masyado nag-a-attempt,” said Monteclaro of his play so far. The second year court general scored 10 points and dished off six assists.
The Falcons played catch up for most of the match. They took a brief one-point lead at 45-44 after a free throw by forward Luther Abrigo at the 6:36 mark of the third period but the Altas quickly built back a lead the largest was at 11 points, 62-51, after a triple by Juneric Baloria with 19 seconds in the third period.
Adamson then went on an 13-2 run to notch the count for the final time at 64-all. The Altas responded with one more 8-0 run for a 72-64 lead behind Nosa Omorogbe and Justine Alano. However, Rodney Brondial, who looked somewhat lost in Adamson’s new system to accommodate Cameroonian center Ingrid Sewa, scored eight points in the end game to keep the match close, 76-75, with 30.9 seconds left to play.
Baloria put back a missed drive by Omorogbe for a 78-75 lead with 13.7 to play.
Jericho Cruz answered with two free throws with 9 seconds left to cut the deficit to one. After Gerald Dizon inbounded the ball to Omorogbe, Jansen Rios poked the ball away from the Nigerian scoring forward who lost in along the baseline giving Adamson a shot to win the game.
After Chris Elopre fouled Monteclaro, the second year Adamson guard hit the marginal shots for the Falcon’s fifth win in seven outings even as the Altas slumped to their sixth loss in the same number of matches.
Assistant coach Jerry Ruiz who called the shots in the absence of head coach Leo Austria who is on duty with the San Miguel Beermen in the Asean Basketball League, believed that the win was vindication for their squad as they lost to the Altas two years ago in a basketball invitational tournament in Sorsogon.
“May nangyari na hindi maganda sa Sorsogon. It’s not a big deal of a championship pero tinalo namin lahat pero sila pahihirapan kami. Parang nangyari, kontrapelo sila. Luckily, we were able to break that jinx,” said Ruiz of the win. So even it’s by one point, sabi nga ni Coach Leo, ‘a win is a win’.”
The match saw several near fights as Cruz and Baloria got in each other’s faces with the former head butting the latter. Surprisingly, the officials only called a regular foul on Cruz. Later in the match, Brondial and Alano jawed and traded barbs with one another.
Cruz led Adamson with 27 points while Brondial and Sewa added 15.
Omorogbe topscored with 27 points. Baloria, Alano, and Harold Arboleda added 18, 14, and 11 points respectively.