Lastimosa stars as Falcons oust Archers to seal semis duel vs Eagles

Luisa Morales - Philstar.com
Lastimosa stars as Falcons oust Archers to seal semis duel vs Eagles
Jerom Lastimosa

MANILA, Philippines — Jerom Lastimosa exploded in the third quarter to lead the Adamson Soaring Falcons back from as much as 13 points down to pull the rug from under the De La Salle Green Archers, 80-76, in their do-or-die Final Four contest at the Mall of Asia Arena on Sunday.

Adamson nailed its first Final Four appearance since 2018 and forged a showdown against the Ateneo Blue Eagles on Wednesday. The Blue Eagles hold a twice-to-beat advantage.

“It feels good to be back in the Final Four. We’re actually gatecrashing the Final Four. People did not expect us to be in the Final Four. We’re happy that the team did their part to be in this situation,” said Adamson head coach Nash Racela.

Lastimosa scored 11 straight points in the third salvo to give Adamson its first lead of the game, 57-56, with 2:48 left in the quarter.

This was after an Evan Nelle triple put La Salle up by 10, 56-46, midway through the period.

It was a back-and-forth affair that saw neither team pull away for the rest of the game.

With 15.4 left in the ball game, Nelle kept the door ajar for La Salle with a steal and a basket to get them within one, 76-77.

But with time ticking against them, Nelle was forced to play the foul game and sent Lastimosa to the free throw line. The graduating guard nailed two freebies to push their advantage to three, 79-76, with 12 seconds left in the game.

Nelle, however, was forced into a bad triple in the next possession as Adamson held on for the victory.

Joshua Yerro split at the line to arrive at the final score.

Lastimosa finished with 22 points, six assists and one steal. He was also 4-of-10 from three. Yerro added 14 markers and six boards.

Meanwhile, Nelle topped the scoring column for La Salle in the losing effort with 22 points, seven assists, four rebounds, one steal and one block.

The Scores:

ADAMSON 80 -- Lastimosa 22, Yerro 13, Manlapaz 11, Douanga 10, Manzano 8, Sabandal 8, Jaymalin 3, Hanapi 2, Flowers 2, Torres 1, V. Magbuhos 0, Colonia 0, Barasi 0, Fuentebella 0.
LA SALLE 76 -- Nelle 22, Nonoy 15, B. Phillips 11, Austria 11, Cortez 10, Abadam 3, Macalalag 2, Buensalida 2, Estacio 0, Nwankwo 0, Manuel 0.

Quarters: 20-27, 38-48, 59-60, 80-76.



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