The Adamson Falcons crashed the offensive glass and proved the steadier team from the free throw line down the stretch as they outlasted the UP Fighting Maroons, 75-70, in Season 75 action of the UAAP at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
The Falcons were led by a returning Rodney Brondial, who missed the previous game after serving out a suspension, as they grabbed 23 offensive boards en route to just their second victory of the season.
Brondial had 15 points and 17 rebounds including 11 on the offensive end, one short of the UAAP record. Eric Camson finished with 19 points and 14 rebounds while Jericho Cruz added 17 points of his own.
Adamson opened up an 11-point lead, 56-45, early in the fourth quarter, but watched as UP mounted a comeback that saw the Fighting Maroons come to as close as six points. But behind Brondial, Camson and Jansen Rios, the Falcons were able to restore the lead back up to 11, 66-55, with just 3:16 to play.
But UP refused to go away as Mark Lopez hit one of two free throws then a three-pointer to make it 66-59. Jelo Montecastro then forced a turnover and was sent to the line, where he split his charities as well, cutting the Adamson lead down to just six with 2:09 remaining.
Adamson point guard Ryan Monteclaro pushed the lead back up to eight, and Rios scored second-chance points after Camson missed a pair of free throws to give the Falcons a double-digit lead, 70-60.
UP wasn’t done, though, as Jett Manuel quickly hit a triple and the Maroons forced another Adamson turnover with just 1:18 to play.
Montecastro missed two attempts, but UP recovered the loose ball. Montecastro was given another trip to the line, but again missed both. The Maroons retained possession after the ball went out of bounds, though, and Manuel scored to cut their deficit to just five, 70-65.
But Cruz hit both of his free throws on the other end to make it 72-65. Chris Ball responded with a short stab that cut the lead back down to five, then was drawn into a jump ball with Brondial with just 36.3 seconds remaining.
Adamson got possession after the jump and Brondial, who had been shooting 48% from the free throw line, was fouled by Mike Silungan. Brondial, though, knocked down both shots for a seven-point lead, 74-67.
Monteclaro added another 12 seconds later as they went back up by eight with 20.7 seconds remaining. Manuel hit one from long range right before the buzzer sounded to seal the final margin.
Adamson moved up to 2-8 for the season while UP dropped back down to a tie with the UE Red Warriors at 1-8.
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