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Inspired Adamson, on-and-off La Salle collide

By Josiah Albelda Posted Jul 24th 2013

Jericho Cruz hopes to lead the Adamson Falcons to back-to-back victories against the unpredictable De La Salle Green Archers.

With a huge scalping of a contender last weekend, Adamson University hopes to solidify its hold of second place when they take on De La Salle University in the 76th UAAP men's basketball tournament at 4 p.m. on Wednesday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

The Soaring Falcons are coming off an upset win over National University as the season hosts spread their wings behind Jericho Cruz, who took over in the second half to push Adamson to the top two with a 3 - 2 record.

Cruz scored 16 of his 18 points in the last two quarters while also buckling down on defense and hitting clutch shots to help the San Marcelino crew improve to 3-2.

Coach Leo Austria also lauded his big men's work on defense, even singling out wiry forward Rodney Brondial for holding fort when the Bulldogs made their final run in the last minute.

"I'm happy to see my big men work, especially Brondial," Austria said. "He may not be scoring, but he did a great job on defense."

After facing Jean Mbe, Brondial and Ingrid Sewa will now be up against the Green Archers' slew of bigs led by Jason Perkins and Arnold van Opstal.

Tipped as a contender before the tournament began, La Salle has suffered back-to-back losses, blowing another huge lead in falling to University of the East.

Now languishing at sixth place with a 2-3 record, the Archers will be hard-pressed to rebound with a win as they hope to close their first round campaign on a positive note.

La Salle has not shown mental toughness to survive rallies in their last two defeats, squandering leads of 13 (against Far Eastern University) and 10 (against the Red Warriors) points in the final period to fall to the bottom half of the standings.

The game will air live on Studio 23, BALLS HD 167, and with a same day replay at  11 p.m. on BALLS SkyCable channel 34/ Destiny Cable channel 36