Someone asked me how my blog and newspaper column came to be titled "Bleachers Brew". It's like this, it's an amalgam of sorts of two things: The bleachers area in the stadium/arena where I used to sit when I would watch baseball, football, and basketball games and Miles Davis' great jazz album Bitches Brew. That's how it got culled together. I originally planned on calling it "The View from the Big Chair" that is a nod to Tears For Fear's second album, Songs from the Big Chair. So there.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Filoil semis: mastery or revenge - San Beda vs NU; UE vs UST

This appears in the Friday, June 7, 2013 edition of the Business Mirror. 

Filoil semis: mastery or revenge
 by rick olivares

The semifinals of the Filoil Flying V Hanes Premier Cup have two scenarios: mastery or revenge.

National University, San Beda College, University of the East, and the University of Santo Tomas are the last four teams standing from an 18-team pool and they will do battle today to decide who advances to the finals of the summer’s preeminent basketball tournament at the Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan.

The UE Red Warriors take on the UST Growling Tigers at 2pm and it will be the second time these two opponents take each other on in this tournament. Both team battled last May 18 with UE running away with a 85-68 win behind the 17-point outburst of Ralf Olivarez and the 16 markers tacked on by Jay-R Sumido.

In that match up, UE didn’t play without its African center Charles Mamie who was benched by head coach Boycie Zamar for breaking team rules. Yet it didn’t matter as his all-Filipino crew comfortably led throughout the whole match. Instead of taking advantage of Mammie’s absence, UST got a subpar outing from its third year Cameroonian center Karim Abdul who tallied five points and eight rebounds in 23 minutes.

“Masarap na laban ‘to,” observed Zamar. “UST has played better since as they have received consistent contributions from its bench (in Ed Daquioag, Paolo Pe and Kim Lo). I expect my boys, my bench to step up as well.”

The match up will also pit two of the best Africans in the college ranks today. UST’s Abdul has averaged 9.7 points, 9.3 rebounds, 0.9 assists, 0.3 steals, and 0.9 blocks in seven matches while UE’s Mammie has produced more solid numbers in six matches with 14.2 points, 11.7 rebounds, 0.3 steals, and 0.2 blocks per outing.

In the main game at 4pm, San Beda will get another crack at National University who defeated them in the very first match of the tournament, 73-71.

San Beda lost in overtime when Baser Amer missed a chance to ice the game in regulation with a missed free throw. That allowed NU’s Ray Parks to send the match into extra minutes where he scored six points with backup guard Cedric Labing-isa hitting the marginal point. The Red Lions had a chance to forge another extension but poor execution in their final play saw NU come away triumphant.

In their quarterfinals matches, both sides had to work hard to advance as NU squeaked past Letran, 69-67. The Knights likewise executed poorly in the game’s final minute allowing NU to remain unscathed.

On the other hand, the Red Lions shut down La Salle in the final four minutes as they came back from a 10-point deficit to win 66-63.

“NU is the team to beat,” noted SBC head coach Boyet Fernandez after his team’s quarterfinals win. “They have been undefeated in two years now in this tournament and they have very capable Africans with them. We will just have to play team basketball to win.”

On his part, NU head coach Eric Altamirano said the Bulldogs have struggled since their return from a pocket tournament in Australia where they were mostly blown away by the tougher competition. “Meron din close games. And hopefully, this close win against Letran will help us be tougher in closing out games. San Beda is used to that as well so it will be a good match up.”

Fernandez noted that in their opening day loss to NU, Amer wilted under the pressure. Against La Salle, he scored 10 of his team’s last 13 points. “I think Baser had like five points against NU in that game,” recalled Fernandez who is in his first year with the reigning NCAA champions. “Now is his time to shine.”

No comments:

Post a Comment