UNIVERSITY of the East held steadier down the stretch to beat De La Salle, 82-79, and bolster its semifinal bonus bid in the UAAP Season 80 women’s basketball tournament yesterday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Love Sto. Domingo hit three key free throws in the final seconds to help the Lady Warriors stay perfect in five second-round matches.
UE rose to 10-2 and moved to solo second place after Far Eastern University downed University of Santo Tomas, 62-58.
The Tigresses absorbed their third loss in 13 contests, now trailing the Lady Warriors by half-a-game in the race for the No. 2 seed in the playoffs.
Eunique Chan (21 points, 14 rebounds) and Sto. Domingo (18 points, 17 rebounds) produced double-double numbers for UE, while Ruthlaine Tacula and Anna Requiron added 18 and 14 points, respectively.
The Lady Tamaraws, for their part, fortified their bid for the remaining semifinals slot by improving to 6-6.
FEU thus moved half a game ahead of Adamson University, which on Saturday boosted its own Final Four bid with a 47-46 win over Ateneo for a 6-7 mark.
Valerie Mamaril led the Lady Tamaraws with 23 points while Precious Arellado added 13 points and seven assists.
In the other women’s game at the Blue Eagle Gym Saturday, titleholder National University bucked the absence of suspended coach Pat Aquino to beat University of the Philippines, 76-35, for its 12th consecutive victory and a 60-0 mark since 2014.