Montebon corner dagger lifts Adamson over UE; forces playoff for #4

Date Posted: November 20, 2023 at 03:45 PM

Mathew Montebon showed why he is touted as the heir apparent to outgoing King Falcon Jerom Lastimosa. 

The rookie point guard etched his name Adamson University Basketball history as he gave the Soaring Falcons a chance to gain a spot in the UAAP Season 86 Men’s Basketball Final Four, fending off the gritty University of the East, 63-61, November 19 at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.  

Down 60-61 with 2.7 second remaining in the final frame, Montebon received an inbound from the sideline and launched a clutch step-back trey over UE’s graduating team captain Abdul Sawat to give back the lead and the eventual win to the blue and white.  

The crucial play was just after UE’s Jack Cruz-Dumont punched his team’s own dagger that give UE the one-point lead. 

“When I got it, I didn’t know who was behind me, so I just did a step-back corner [three-point shot]. I thought I missed because I just threw it up and [fell] but luckily, it went in,” he said on what may be the most pivotal basket yet of his young UAAP career. 

With the win, the San Marcelino-based squad found themselves in a familiar spot from last season when they needed to play a decider for the last spot for the season’s final four. Adamson defeated De La Salle University then and secured the playoff berth. 

The Falcons are set to face defending champions Ateneo de Manila University, with whom they share a similar 7-7 record. The game is slated for November 22 at the same venue. 

Third-year Adamson head coach Nash Racela was, again, candid in his statements during the post-game presser, admitting that their victory may have been out of sheer luck.  

“I like how it ended. Walang script dun ah. UE really made it tough for us. Some would say really tsamba. I won’t deny that. Mukha namang tsamba talaga,” he said, also lauding his boys for their resolve. 

“I think from the very beginning that’s what we emphasized to our players -- that there are no freebies in this world. You have to earn everything; you have to take it if you want it.,” he said. “Today we thank UE for allowing us to do that. Talagang pinahirapan kami. They didn’t give it to us on a silver platter.” 

Adamson outrebounded the Red Warriors, 54-36, leading to a huge gap at second-chance points, 18-2. 

Montebon and Ced Manzano led the Falcons with 16 points apiece, with the latter also posting 10 rebounds and four steals. Vince Magbuhos also ended his slump, adding 10 points and eight rebounds. 

Another spectacle during the game was when Adamson and UE’s drumlines had a joint halftime performance to show solidarity between the two universities. 


The Scores: 

Adamson 63 – Montebon 16, Manzano 16, Magbuhos 10, Yerro 8, Hanapi 5, Ojarikre 3, Erolon 3, Barcelona 2, Colonia 0, Ramos 0, Barasi 0, Anabo 0. 

UE 61 – Remogat 16, Momowei 15, Cruz-Dumont 13, Galang 5, Lingolingo 3, Tulabut 3, Gilbuena 3, Maglupay 2, Sawat 1, Langit 0, Alcantara 0, Spandonis 0. 

Quarter Scores: 16-16, 37-29, 45-47, 63-61.