Though young, the Ateneo-Pilipinas Blue Eagles still overwhelmed host Chinese-Taipei White to open their 2018 Jones Cup campaign on a rousing note, taking an 87-64 victory, Sunday evening at the Xinzhuang Gym in New Taipei City, Taiwan.
Thirdy Ravena was all over the place, finishing with 17 points, seven rebounds, three steals, and a block. Ivorian student-athlete Angelo Kouame was the anchor on the other hand, tallying 15 points and 18 rebounds.
With the two steering the wheel, the defending UAAP Men’s Basketball champions surged during the second frame while limiting Chinese-Taipei to just 13 points for a 15-point halftime lead.
The Ateneo blitz continued in the final frame, as baskets from William Navarro and Isaac Go extended Ateneo’s lead to 21. Jolo Mendoza then put on the finishing touches later on, as his five straight points gave Ateneo their biggest lead of the game, 85-60, with 1:33 left in the game.
Mendoza had 11 points off the bench, while 2018 Chooks-to-Go Pivotal Player of the Year Isaac Go added 10 points and seven rebounds.
But beyond the points supplied by the four Blue Eagles, it was the discipline the team showed that proved to be the highlight that led to the dominant win.
Ateneo committed only 12 turnovers in the contest while forcing the Taiwanese to 15 errors. Moreover, Ateneo assisted on 15 of their 33 field goal makes.
Oscar Kao scored 16 points to pace Chinese-Taipei, while Lin Chun-Chi chipped in 15 markers.
Ateneo-Pilipinas will next face Ricardo Ratliffe and South Korea on Monday, July 16 at 5pm.
Philippines 87 – Ravena 17, Kouame 15, Mendoza 11, Go 10, Nieto Ma. 8, Verano 8, Mamuyac 4, Tio 4, Asistio 3, Nieto Mi. 3, Black 2, Navarro 2.
Chinese-Taipei B 64 – Kao 16, Lin C 15, Lin T 12, Chen K 8, Chen Y 7, Wang 3, Wu 2, Chien 1, Lai 0, Lu 0, Sun 0, Hsu 0.
Quarterscores: 26-20, 48-33, 67-52, 87-64.