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UAAP: Ricci Rivero comes through for UP despite struggles


Ricci Rivero. Photograph from UAAP

MANILA, Philippines — Ricci Rivero had an off-shooting night time and dedicated essential turnovers down the stretch. However he delivered the 2 essential free throws that grounded Ateneo’s flight to a second straight outright Finals within the UAAP Season 84 males’s basketball event.

After lacking two three-point pictures and committing an error off a nasty move as College of the Philippines trailed 83-82 with 32.4 seconds left, the graduating guard executed one other isolation play and drove to the basket, drawing a foul from Gian Mamuyac.

Rivero displayed grace below strain in entrance of the ten, 512 followers, sinking the 2 charities for an 84-83 lead with 22.2 ticks remaining because the Combating Maroons ended the Blue Eagles’ 39-game profitable streak, which lasted for two years, and shifted the postseason format to a daily Last 4.

“My turnovers, I’m very accountable to that. It was my passes, I was really trying to create from my teammates because my shots aren’t falling, I don’t know things aren’t going my way,” mentioned Rivero, who dedicated 5 of the staff’s 11 turnovers.

“But I was telling them to just look at me and I’m gonna create for my guys and I’m very thankful to coach Gold for giving me that opportunity, but again that wasn’t really all me it was really God.”

Ricci Rivero UP UAAP

Ricci Rivero made all of his 4 free throws together with the game-winning freebies. Photograph from UAAP

The 23-year-old scored eight factors on a poor 2-of-9 taking pictures night time however had an ideal journey to the road making all his 4 free throws together with the 2 profitable pictures as he believed he was used as God’s instrument to finish the upset.

“I’m thankful to papa Jesus for my free throws.  He guided me all throughout the game, throughout the whole team, we’ve been practicing that but I offer my two shots to Him,”  he mentioned. “It’s all Him and that wasn’t me. I was used as an instrument to make those shots.”

UP coach Goldwin Monteverde mentioned he all the time believed in Rivero as his gamble to maintain the 6-foot-1 guard on the ground has paid off despite his struggles.

“I’ve always believed in Ricci ever since and I really trust him. I think he knows it, and the team also trusts him in that kind of situation. I know he could do things for the team,” Monteverde mentioned. “He is brave and he has the confidence.”

Rivero is grateful to play below Monteverde and be a part of this batch of Combating Maroons in his final enjoying yr.

“To be able to play to coach Gold’s system, it is such an honor for me to gain so much from him, from the whole coaching staff, from my teammates. They’ve been a big part of my career, especially last playing year,” mentioned Rivero. “I’m just so happy we are seeing what the team is capable of, and we really showed that this UP team is something else as long as we listen to coaches, stick to our game plans, stick to the system and trust our teammates.”

Rivero will play the final stretch of his UAAP profession when the twice-to-bear UP battles La Salle within the Last 4 on Wednesday at 2 p.m.

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