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Clutch Yam steers Ateneo past FEU for share of third spot

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The performance of Ateneo de Manila’s Hazelle Yam in her second season continues to skyrocket, and in a heated encounter against Far Eastern University, the sophomore once again delivered in the clutch to help the Lady Eagles score a 60-51 win Sunday in the UAAP Season 78 women’s basketball tournament at the Blue Eagle Gym.

The Lady Eagles won their third straight meeting and rose to 4-4 overall, creating a three-way logjam from third to fifth spot along with University of the East and University of Sto. Tomas.

Yam finished with 15 points including nine in the fourth period to help Ateneo douse FEU’s last-ditch effort in trying to steal the game.

Danica Jose meanwhile won the battle of the giants underneath as she had 20 points on 53 percent shooting, nine rebounds, and three blocks as opposed to Clare Castro’s 15 points and 12 boards.

After six straight points from Castro handed FEU a 22-21 lead in the second quarter, Yam hit a triple before fastbreak baskets by Katrina Guytingco and Kai Javier made it 29-24 for Ateneo.

The Lady Eagles then held down the Lady Tamaraws without a field goal for almost the entire third quarter while Jose did damage underneath to extend the lead to 40-25.

Tempers flared after as FEU head coach Bert Flores was ejected after two technical fouls as a result of excessive complaining.

Precious Arellado managed to pull the Lady Tamaraws closer with drives as the third period ended 44-34.

Clare Castro and Yetunde Okunlola then scored baskets underneath halfway in the fourth frame to pull FEU within 48-54, before back to back baskets by Yam made it 59-50.

FEU was never able to score a field goal again after that point as they succumbed to 1-7.

Castro had 15 points and 12 rebounds for the Lady Tamaraws; Arellado added 13 points while Okunlola chipped in 11 points and 12 boards.

Ateneo had a 40-26 lead in points in the paint, mostly off fastbreak opportunities as they had 12 fastbreak points.

The Lady Eagles also doubled the Lady Tamaraws’ assists total, 14-7 in the win.z

Scores:

Ateneo (60) – Jose 20, Yam 15, Guytingco 9, Deacon 5, Go 4, Tomita 3, Javier 2, Aseron 2, Buendia 0, Posadas 0, Moslares 0, Veloso 0, Payac 0, Lamar 0, Newsome 0.

FEU (51) – Castro 15, Arellado 13, Okunlola 11, Adriano 6, Balleser 3, Ventura 2, Baldonado 1, Abat 0, Quiapo 0, Hortaleza 0, Gerner 0, Payadon 0.

Quarterscores: 13-15, 29-25, 44-34, 60-51.

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