The Games that Play Us: Overtime Pay

Aldrech Ramos helped FEU solidify its position in at 3rd spot.
(image by Andrew Pamorada/
FEU Tamaraws over the NU Bulldogs, 84-82

The Tamaraws are the official comeback kids of the UAAP. And the Bulldogs are officially the Kings of Collapse.

Down 18 mid-3rd quarter, the Boys from Morayta used a stifling full-court press and great sniping to roar back into the game against the Bulldogs. Ray Parks, easily one of the best newcomers in the history of the league, outdid himself again by pouring in 32 points (a new season-high), thanks to 3 treys and making 15 of his 18 free-throw attempts. He made some clutch booboos, however, that helped spell doom for coach Eric Altamirano.

Someone's unhappy in Sampaloc.
(image by Andrew Pamorada/
And the Green & Gold were quick to pounce. Coach Bert Flores took a huge risk giving his bigs the green light to shoot from range, but Russel Escoto and Aldrech Ramos made good on their chances. The center duo shot an immaculate 4-of-4 from rainbow country, while the rest of the Tams shot just 3-of-20.

The big hero for this game, though, was erstwhile slumping sophomore Terrence Romeo, who finished with 16 points, 7 rebounds, 7 assists and 1 steal. The most important stat for him, however, was having ZERO turnovers, although there was one late instance where he committed a mental mistake fouling Ray Parks. That ill-advised foul gave Parks 2 freebies, but he split them and FEU played good enough D to sustain the win afterwards.

Terrence Romeo led the FEU herd to the comeback win.
(image by Andrew Pamorada/
So once again NU plays well enough to beat FEU for almost the whole game, and once again FEU makes the Bulldogs pay, this time in overtime. And if the Bulldogs tumble out of the Final Four race, which, unless a minor miracle happens, is probably the case already, then this game pretty much sums up the whole season for the Sampaloc five.

Emmanuel Mbe and the Bulldogs are just
a breath away from outright elimination.
(image by Andrew Pamorada/
NU is a strong team, with a strong brain trust. They have talent, size, shooting, and speed. They can execute, they can play good defense, and they can get to the line frequently. But they have failed to step-up on the big stage. Aside from their upset of the Adamson Falcons in the first round, this NU team has lost all its assignments to the preseason favorites thus far (that’s Ateneo, Adamson, FEU and La Salle). They have a chance to equalize against the Eagles and the Archers soon, but they’re not exactly the good bets on both of those matches. Who knows what one year of collective experience can do for them in Season 75? Finally a Final Four appearance? Maybe even be considered a title contender? Or another missed opportunity?

Speaking of opportunities, I’m sure Anton Montinola’s pretty pumped at how his Tams are currently playing, and how they’ve seized the opportunities tumbling their way. After sinking to 4-wins and 4-losses, FEU is now on a 3-game win streak, and looks locked at the third spot (at the very least). If they manage to end up at 10-4, then maybe a playoff for the 2nd seed might also be in the offing. The first hurdle to that target is the suddenly-dangerous UE quintet on Saturday.

FEU 84 – Ramos 18, Garcia 14, Romeo 14, Tolomia 8, Escoto 4, Exciminiano 2, Cruz 2, Mendoza 0, Bringas 0, Pogoy 0, Knuttel 0
NU 82 – Nuyles 17, Alvarez 9, Camson 9, Lozada 8, Cañada 7, Brondial 6, Cabrera 4, Manyara 1, Etrone 0, Colina 0, Petilos 0
QS: 16-15, 31-35, 49-57, 70-70, 76-76 (OT), 84-82 (2OT)

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