HomeHomeUAAP: First round loss fuels Zavier Lucero, UP in beating NU

UAAP: First round loss fuels Zavier Lucero, UP in beating NU

Zavier Lucero UP Fighting Maroons UAAP

UP’s Zavier Lucero. UAAP PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines — Zavier Lucero was on target from beyond the arc as he poured five triples to lead University of the Philippines’ vengeful 75-63 victory over National University in the UAAP Season 85 men’s basketball tournament on Sunday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.

The high-flying 6-foot-7 forward went 5-of-8 from deep to finish with 16 points on top of four rebounds, five assists, two steals, and one block to extend the Fighting Maroons’ winning run to four games and keep their hold of the top seed with a 7-1 record.

Lucero attributed his hot shooting to his teammates, whom he credited for his open looks.

“I’m just trying to take the ones that are open for me. Credit to the guys who are coming off of down screens finding me,” he said.

His offseason work and determination to get back at their first-round tormentors also fueled Lucero’s fiery performance.

“I put a lot of work into my shot this summer in order to showcase that I can shoot the long ball and continue to shoot with confidence, and hopefully, they’ll keep going in,” said Lucero.

“This is a team that beat us in the first round, so it’s big for us, a step in the right direction to accomplishing (our goal). In the first game of the second round, we wanted to start off strong. It wasn’t pretty at all times, but we pulled it off. We did what we needed to win the game,” he added.

When asked if he’s motivated by not making it to the top 10 statistical leaders after becoming a member of the Mythical Five last season, the graduating Lucero made it clear that he’s only focused on helping UP repeat.

“The championship is all that matters for this whole team. Whatever I can do on or off the court just to win… we got the best record in the league, so all these guys, you gotta win to show for something, right?” said Lucero, who is currently 17th in the MVP race with 59.71 statistical points at the end of the first round, where he averaged 15.4 points, 8.3 rebounds, 1.8 assists, and 1.8 steals.

UP aims to continue its winning ways against Adamson on Wednesday.

“Our mindset going to every game is the same. We know that basketball is a game where anyone can beat anyone. Can’t take anyone lightly, especially Adamson,” he said. “They got a little bit of momentum on their side, so taking that team very seriously because it’s a tough time every game we play against them.”

Read Next

Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. ch like us ch follow us

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.

Source link



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Most Popular

Recent Comments