MANILA – University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons recovered from a slow start to score an 80-71 win over Mapua University Cardinals in the 2019 Filoil Flying V Preseason Cup on Monday night at San Juan Arena.
Juan Gomez De Liaño led the way with 17 points, while Jun Manzo added 15 markers for the Fighting Maroons, which managed to score the win even without Ricci Rivero and Kobe Paras.
Trailing 27-29 late in the second period, the Fighting Maroons went on a huge run behind Gomez De Liaño and Manzo to establish a 41-29 advantage midway in the third period.
Shooting woes continued for the Cardinals as the Fighting Maroons went on a huge 13-0 scoring run for its largest lead at 61-35 on two free throw conversions from James Spencer.
The Cardinals, however, did not easily gave up as they went on a huge rally in the fourth to trim the deficit to nine points but the Fighting Maroons answered with timely hits to preserve the win.
“I think the entire team stepped up,” said Fighting Maroons head coach Dolreich Perasol. “Even with Bright Akhuetie playing few minutes and without Ricci Rivero and Kobe Paras, this is good because we know there are others who can step up.”
Warren Bonifacio top-scored with double-double 23 points and 13 rebounds, while Eric Jabel and Laurenz Victoria contributed 15 and 13 markers, respectively, for the Cardinals (1-5)./PN