Go Archers -

Teng, Vosotros sizzle as Archers complete comeback against Altas in PCCL Sweet 16

Jeron Teng

With thirty-two seconds left and his team up by only a basket, Jeron Teng received the ball from Oda Tampus, drove hard to the lane, and hung in the air for what seemed like an eternity before hoisting the ball up. It danced a couple of times along the rim before going through the net, giving his team a four-point spread with time down to thirty ticks.

Teng flexed his muscles as he ran downcourt to stop the next Altas offensive, and the fans cheered in adulation. Even in Tanauan, Batangas, ripples of the Tengsanity can still be strongly felt.

Despite being down by as much as a dozen points in the opening half, the Green Archers turned on the jets in the game’s last twenty minutes to pull off a masterful 75-72 comeback victory against the University of Perpetual Help Altas, 75-72, in the Sweet 16 phase of the Philippine Collegiate Champions League (PCCL) held earlier today at the First Asia Institute of Technology and Humanities (FAITH) Gym in Tanauan, Batangas.

Teng, the UAAP’s reigning Rookie of the Year and a member of the Mythical Five, notched a game-high 19 points, while Almond Vosotros, who went scoreless in the first half, heated up like a microwave and added 18 (including three three-pointers) of his own.

The Altas, who likewise made the Final Four in the NCAA and were booted out of contention by eventual champions San Beda, established their biggest lead of the contest, 28-16, near the end of the second canto, after a blistering 15-2 run anchored by two trifectas from main man Jett Vidal.

La Salle, who had a hard time penetrating the zone defense of the Altas, finally made their first outside shot midway through the third courtesy of Thomas Torres, although Scott Thompson would hold the fort for Perpetual by scoring eight in the quarter for his team to take a seven-point lead, 52-45, into the payoff period.

Vidal began the quarter with his third triple to give his squad a double-digit lead, but it would prove to be their last, as Vosotros rifled in back-to-back triples of his own to bring the Archers within four, 51-55.

And that was when the tide turned against the Altas, as Vidal was whistled for his fourth foul after contesting an eventual and-one play from Teng. Vidal and the Altas bench were subsequently slapped with technical fouls for complaining to the officials, giving La Salle four free throws plus ball possession, during which they finally wrested the lead, 65-62, with time down to three minutes and change.

The Altas, however, were far from done as Nigerian Nicholas Omorogbe and Thompson made a combined six free throws to allow them to tie the contest at 70, with a little over two minutes left in the contest, setting the stage for the game’s cardiac finish and Teng’s two crucial baskets that would douse any hopes of a Perpetual comeback.

With the win, the Green Archers won a date in the Queen City of the South with a familiar foe, the Adamson Falcons, who earlier handily defeated the La-Union-based La Finns Scholastica Lionhearts to likewise barge further into the tournament. Their game will be held on November 15 at the Cebu Coliseum at 2p.m.

La Salle last won the PCCL crown in 2008, when they were still bannered by JV Casio and Rico Maierhofer, when they defeated bitter rivals Ateneo Blue Eagles for the title.

The Green Archers’ Line-Up:

Jovet Mendoza and Joshua Webb, who have played out their years of eligibility in the UAAP, will not suit up for the Green-and-White in this tournament. LA Revilla, Mac-Mac Tallo, and Luigi Dela Paz have likewise missed the game due to nagging injuries, and the Archers have tried to blunt their personnel losses by inserting Aiki Herrera of Team B in their official PCCL line-up.

The Scores:

La Salle-75– Teng-19, Vosotros-18, Torres, N.-14, Tampus-7, Van Opstal-7, Torres, T.-6 Andrada-2, Manguera-2 Paredes-0, Gotladera-0, Reyes-0, Herrera-0

UPHSD-72- Omorogbe-17, Thompson-17, Vidal-9, Allen-9, Alano-6, Babayemi-4, Arboleda-4, Elopre-4, Paulino-2

Quarterscores: 12-13, 21-30, 45-52, 75-72