Good solid game from the Archers resulting in that 20-point victory. It could have been a bigger blowout but Franz elected to tinker with his lineup.
Defensive intensity was outstanding from the beginning, limiting NU to 4 points in the 1st quarter, 16 in the 2nd, 8 in the 3rd, before easing up and allowing the Bulldogs to score 20 in the 4th. Only Ponferada and Baloran managed to score consistently on plays in the paint with their teammates rendered ineffective by the stifling press and man-to-man defense of the Archers.
The Archer lockdown defense forced NU into more than 32 turnovers as of the end of the 3rd quarter. The turnover story was not entirely one way. In the first half, the Archers had already tallied 15 turnovers according to the tv panel.
The Archers were relatively effective on offense, averaging 19 points in the first 3 quarters before easing off in the fourth with the game already beyond recall.
Marata scored 12 points, all on triples. Gab Banal also connected on his own trey.
Yutien stole the ball in successive plays in the 4th quarter and scored on a nice side jumper to cap the sequence.
Ever since the second match against FEU, the team has shown incremental improvements in all aspects of their game, but most strikingly on defense. They have now limited opponents to 65, 65, 63, 63 and 48. That’s an average of 60.8. The offense has picked up, seems someone took the lid off the ring and our boys can now feel the shot go in as they take it. Not bad at all. When we play FEU and UE in the second round, they’ll find that this is a different team.
This win was in contrast to the Adamson game, which was tight for most of the game. The Archers sprinted to a 9-0 lead and never looked back. This was in contrast to their previous games where they trailed in the first quarter. Wonder what they had for breakfast? Maybe we should make sure the team has more of that whenever they have a game.