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, December 8, 2017

LPU defeats UP for Got Skills championship

LPU defeats UP for Got Skills championship
by rick olivares

It isn’t the NCAA, but this will have to do… for now.

The Lyceum of the Philippines University bagged the Milcu Sports Basketball Got Skills Elite Showcase U25 championships at the Buddha Care Gym with a stirring come-from-behind 89-81 triumph over heavily favored University of the Philippines.

The no-name LPU Pirates sported a 10-3 record against UP’s 11-2 and their big names like Bright Akhuetie, UAAP veterans JD Tungcab and Pio Longa plus highly-touted recruit Filipino-American David Murrell. Yet with their swarming defense on Akhuetie and pedal-to-the-metal attack-oriented basketball the overcame the odds to bag this prestigious college cage crown.

Battling foul trouble to its mainstays Jerwyn Guinto, Gab Valencia, Carl Lumbao, and Casper Pericas, the Pirates were kept afloat by Grecco Magbuhos and Red Rubite.

Yet, they still found themselves down by 10 points, 81-71, with 2:02 left in the game after a Murrell spin lay-up. LPU head coach Jeffrey Perlas switch from man-to-man defense to a zone that stymied UP. With Lumbao finally catching fire and after a huge triple by Magbuhos to lift LPU to the lead 84-81, UP succumbed to the pressure as they were held scoreless the rest of the way.

“We didn’t stop playing even when we were down,” said Perlas of his boys’ effort. “We wanted to keep them off balance by constantly going at them. Bright got his blocks (he finished with four) but we didn’t allow him to catch his breath.

LPU got the bulk of their points inside off lay-ups and they also put a crimp on the Fighting Maroons on the defensive end as they pick-pocketed UP’s players for a 14-3 advantage in steals leading to a 37-11 advantage in points off turnovers.

Carl Lumbao led LPU with 14 points while Grecco Magbuhos added 13 markers off the bench.

For the Fighting Maroons, Murrell topscored for the game with 30 points while Akhuetie added 19 points and 24 rebounds. Tungcab finished with 11.

The championship was sweet revenge for LPU who took it on the chin against UP that blitzed them in the elimination round, 71-50, on the Pirates’ home court in Intramuros last August 19.

“It’s a big win for us,” summed up Perlas. “And it’s boost for our program and what we hope to achieve next NCAA season.”

LPU 89 – Lumbao 14, Magbuhos 13, Garing 8, Remulla 8, Guinto 8, Cecilio 7, Rubite 7, Pericas 7, Li 6, Dionson 5, Valencia 3, Japson 2, Pido 2, Soriano 0, Salo 0, Alamo 0.

UP 81 – Murrell 30, Akhuetie 19, Tungcab 11, Madrigal 5, Ong 5, Espanola 3, Longa 3, Santiago 3, Kamga 2, Gomez De Liaño 0, Ang 0, Ouano 0, Artez 0, Dela Cruz 0.

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