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NSNU caps perfect season with second straight crown

The Nazareth School of National University Bullpups completed their perfect run of UAAP Season 82 after besting the FEU Baby Tamaraws, 87-80, to win their second straight high school title Monday at the Filoil Flying V Centre.

The Bullpups sweep the season with an immaculate 16-0 record while notching back-to-back titles for the first time in school history.

"We really prepared for this season," said NU coach Goldwin Monteverde. "Of course, along the way, there were a lot of challenges that we had to face. It's good to see that all our hard work paid off."

The Bullpups flashed their championship pedigree and experience from start to finish against a gritty effort from the Baby Tamaraws. Unlike their lackluster start in Game 1, the Bullpups had control for most of the contest.

FEU, however, kept within striking distance and was merely staring at a seven-point deficit, 79-72, after an and-1 conversion from Penny Estacio with four minutes left in the game. The Bullpups rose to the occasion and unleashed a quick 8-0 blast kickstarted by a one-handed thunderous slam from Kevin Quiambao. After a triple from Gerry Abadiano, NU had the game in the bag with an 87-72 advantage with 2:15 remaining.

Carl Tamayo was named finals MVP after a gaudy stat line of 26 points and 22 rebounds in the title-clinching game. He averaged 19.0 points, 18.0 rebounds, and 1.0 blocks in the championship round.

"This was really an awesome journey although it wasn't all that easy," Tamayo said in Filipino. "Everyone just sees how we play and not really the behind-the-scenes and how we work."

Gerry Abadiano added 20 points and five boards while Terrence Fortea chipped in with 13 points and four dimes as the Bullpups enjoyed a lead as many as 17 points.

John Rey Pasaol did all he could for FEU with 20 points, three rebounds, four assists, and five steals. Estacio was right behind with 17 points while the pair of Jorick Bautista and Patrick Sleat had 13 points apiece.

The Bullpups achieved a season sweep for the second time in school history - a feat they notched back in 2013. This is also their fifth title in the last nine years.

In the Girls' Division, the Adamson Baby Lady Falcons extended the final series to a winner-take-all rubber match after besting the UST Junior Growling Tigresses in Game 2, 79-74.

Joan Camagong led the way with 29 points, including six triples, while pulling down 12 rebounds. The duo of Katrina Agojo and Abegail Amdad put up 12 points and nine boards apiece.

Twins Nicole and Erika Danganan did the most damage for UST. Nicole posted 23 points, six rebounds, and seven assists while Erika had a double-double of 17 points and 10 boards.

Game 3 between the Baby Lady Falcons and Junior Growling Tigresses will be on Friday at the Filoil Flying V Centre.