The Games that Play Us: Terrible Twos

Paul Zamar enters the last week of his UAAP career
at the bottom of the standings.
(image from

FEU Tamaraws over the UE Red Warriors, 78-69

By Terrible I don’t mean awful – quite the opposite, in fact. By Terrible I mean awesome – so awesome that they cause terror on the opposition.

By Twos, I mean FEU’s two two-guards, RR Garcia and Terrence Romeo. Yes, they’ve traded places at the point and off-guard spots this season, but we all know that both of those guys aren’t cookie-cutter floor generals, right? Both were born to shoot. Both were born to score.

Just ask the UE Red Warriors.

Coach Jerry Codiñera’s young upstarts got the business end of R & R’s scoring punch as coach Bert Flores’s dazzling duo combined for 42 markers on the strength of 16-of-33 FG shooting and 6-of-12 3PT shooting. They also had a total of 5 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals.

RR Garcia was on-target against the UE Red Warriors.
(image from
But it wasn’t just the Terrible Twosome that got it going for the Morayta outfit. Aldrech Ramos hit two clutch triples that put the outcome beyond doubt. He finished with 13 points and 3 blocks. Ramos only had 3 boards to his name, but that was because Mark Bringas took it upon himself to secure the rebounds, and, well, both squads shot relatively well from the field – a combined 48% (59-of-122). There weren’t exactly a lot of rebounds to be grabbed – a total of just 58 for the entire contest.

Other keys for FEU were the following: they made 9 threes compared to just 5 for UE, and they forced 19 crimson turnovers as opposed to just 12 for the Green & Gold.

The scary thing for the other Final Four-bound teams? It seems that, despite missing a plethora of key players (Pipo Noundou, JR Cawaling, and Christian Sentcheu), the Tamaraws seem to be getting into the groove at just the right time. It actually seems like having a tighter rotation has been more of a blessing for coach Flores, as Ramos, Romeo and RR (Oooo… the 3 Rs!!!) have enough time to get, and keep, in rhythm.

It’s a boom or bust kind of thing for FEU. Without Cawling and Noundou, the Tams lack the “insurance” in case their main guns fire blanks, but nobody should bet against those 3 Rs misfiring on any day.

If Terrence Romeo's shooting continues to improve,
then FEU might just threaten for that UAAP crown.
(image from
Anyone betting against UE, though, cannot really be faulted. They’ve had some good games of late, and this one isn’t exactly a blowout, but perhaps this latest setback is their reality check. They’ve played the best they can. They’ve had more than their share of upsets. They’ve shown loads of potential. By and large, though, UE is really a team built not for Season 74, but maybe for the next few. JM Noble should continue to be solid next season (if he chooses to play out his final year of eligibility), alongside fellow reliable, if inconsistent, vets like Adrian Santos, JR Sumido, Lord Casajeros and Erwin Duran, and young guns like Chris Javier, Roi Sumang, and BJ Zosa should benefit from a year under their belts.

One day it’ll be exciting to see if UE can make the Final Four again, but that day won’t come anytime soon.

FEU, on the other hand, is sure to make the Final Four, and maybe even beyond that if they continue shooting the way they did here. Their next foes, the Growling Tigers and the Green Archers, better be practicing their on-ball and ball-screen defenses in anticipation of the Tams’ Terrible Twos.

FEU 78 – Garcia 21, Romeo 21, Ramos 13, Bringas 8, Escoto 6, Tolomia 5, Cruz 4, Exciminiano 0, Knuttel 0, Foronda 0, Pogoy 0
UE 69 – Zamar 12, Sumido 12, Sumang 11, Noble 11, Santos 10, Flores 8, Zosa 3, Tagarda 2, Javier 0, Montelibano 0, Sabangan 0, Chavez 0, Casajeros 0, Duran 0, Enguio 0
QS: 20-9, 41-29, 58-45, 78-69

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