(Mall of Asia Arena)
2 p.m. -- UE vs. FEU (M)
4 p.m. -- AdU vs. ADMU (M)
ADAMSON primed up for its much-anticipated duel with Ateneo with a 77-53 drubbing of National University in the penultimate day of the UAAP men’s basketball eliminations last night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The Falcons led by as much as 30 points to post their eighth win in 13 contests and move within a game of the Blue Eagles (9-4) in the hunt for the remaining twice-to-beat slot in the Final Four.
“It’s gonna be a dogfight come Wednesday,” said Adamson coach Franz Pumaren, referring to their twice-delayed showdown with the current hottest team in the league. “Ateneo has this new aura. They are very confident. Hope that they can put up a good fight.”
The Falcons, who are making their first semifinals stint since 2011, prevailed over the Eagles in their first round meeting, 62-61, courtesy of a Dawn Ochea game-winner.
Aside from Adamson and Ateneo, defending champion Far Eastern University, which also sports a 8-5 card, is also very much in the race for the semis bonus.
In a duel of also-rans, University of the East assured itself of avoiding last place this season with an 80-67 dismantling of University of the Philippines.
Cameroon’s Papi Sarr atoned from his poor showing the previous game with 22 points and 15 rebounds while Jonathan Espeleta added 15 markers for the Falcons.
The Bulldogs will miss the Final Four, two years removed after ending a 60-year title drought. NU wound up in fifth place with a 5-9 card, as coach Eric Altamirano will not be in the playoffs for the first time since taking over the Bustillos-based squad in 2012.
The Red Warriors halted a four-game losing skid to notch their third win in 13 matches and will wrap up the season on Wednesday against the Tamaraws.
Win or lose, UE will place seventh while relegating University of Santo Tomas (3-11) in last spot.
Bonbon Batiller, Renz Palma and Philip Manalang scored 14 points apiece while Alvin Pasaol added 11 points and six rebounds for UE.
Despite the loss, the ninth in 14 games, it was the most successful season for the Fighting Maroons in 11 years, as they chalked up five wins.
For graduating players Jett Manuel, Dave Moralde and Henry Asilum, UP is in good hands under coach Bo Perasol and the new talents coming around.
Manuel and Moralde had 13 points apiece while Paul Desiderio chipped in 12 points and eight rebounds for the Maroons.
UE (80) -- Batiller 14, Manalang 14, Palma 14, Pasaol 11, Bartolome 7, Varilla 6, Olayon 5, Derige 3, Abanto 2, Acuno 2, Gagate 2, Charcos 0.
UP (67) -- Manuel 13, Moralde 13, Desiderio 12, Webb 6, Asilum 5, Gomez De Liaño 5, Vito 5, Dario 3, Lao 2, Lim 2, Harris 1, Jaboneta 0, Prado 0.
Quarterscores: 20-17, 42-28, 65-44, 80-67.
AdU (77) -- Sarr 22, Espeleta 15, Tungcab 9, Manalang 8, Manganti 6, Ahanmisi 5, Paranada 5, Mustre 3, Camacho 2, Bernardo 2, Ochea 0, Pasturan 0, Ng 0, Chua 0.
NU (53) -- Alejandro 15, Aroga 9, Salem 8, Yu 6, Diputado R. 5, Mosqueda 3, Morido 2, Salim 2, Rangel 2, Abatayo 1, Diputado C. 0.
Quarterscores: 14-13, 35-19, 56-40, 77-53.