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Filoil: Ballungay, Obasa power Ateneo to second win, send UE out of contention


Ateneo de Manila University dashed the hopes of University of the East of advancing in the 2023 Filoil EcoOil Preseason Cup by riding a third-quarter tsunami all the way to a 73-56 win on Wednesday inside San Juan’s Filoil EcoOil Centre.

Clinging to a two-point, 37-35 edge at halftime, the Blue Eagles turned on the jets in the third period, where they blasted the Red Warriors 24-7. They wouldn’t relinquish both the momentum and double-digit lead.

Ateneo has secured back-to-back wins following a 0-5 start to the premiere preseason tournament supported by Filoil, EcoOil, Hanes, Akari, Reyes BBQ, BDO, Kalos Sportswear, and Molten.

“We’re happy with the win. There’s nothing magical about adjustments at halftime,” said head coach Tab Baldwin. “When your team doesn’t do things in the first half, that stuff impacts the game. We just came out in the third quarter and rebounded the ball better.”

Kai Ballungay led the way for Ateneo with 15 points and five rebounds, while Joseph Obasa posted a 14-point, 10-rebound double-double. They still have two games left on their schedule to add to their streak.

“Obviously, Joe’s a key component of our team. Big shoes to fill for Ange [Kouame], but he’s willingly taking that on. If anybody can do it, Joe’s the kind of person that can,” said Baldwin about his new man in the middle.

The win by the UAAP champions eliminated UE while also trimming the race for the fourth and final Group II playoff berth down to three teams. Noy Remogat led the effort for the Red Warriors with 13 points, five rebounds, and two steals as they fell to 3-5.

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Meanwhile, Adamson University gave itself a shot at the next round after taking care of business against winless Faith Colleges of Batangas, winning 108-63.

Didat Hanapi contributed 12 points, five rebounds, and two assists and was supported by four other teammates in double digits as the Falcons soared to a 5-4 standing to end the eliminations. They are in contention for Group II’s last playoff berth along with Far Eastern University (5-3) and St. Clare College of Caloocan (4-4).

However, head coach Nash Racela felt far from satisfied as Adamson found itself tied at 18-all with the 0-8 Bravehearts after the first seven minutes.

“Faith was playing correctly and as a team, and it just so happened that they were smaller than us, and we had a deeper bench. So I reminded the boys that we had to respect our opponents and play the right way,” he said.

The Soaring Falcons did just that in the last three quarters, outclassing their opponents 85-39.

Adam Eric Fernado led Faith Colleges with 15 points. They get one last shot at a breakthrough against Ateneo on Thursday.


Over in Group I, Emilio Aguinaldo College exited with aplomb after upsetting erstwhile first-placed University of Perpetual Help, winning 79-71.

Four Generals scored in double digits, led by a 22-point, 11-rebound, six-assist performance by JP Maguliano. Art Cosa also added 14 points in just 16 and a half minutes as they closed their campaign at 3-6.

“Ngayon, wala pa kami sa 50 percent. Hindi naman magic yung basketball. Bago lang kami dito, bago lang din yung sistema kaya mga nasa 40 percent pa lang kami,” said assistant Noy Catalan, speaking for first-year head coach Jerson Cabiltes.

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The Altas, on the other hand, will now have to beat three-peat NCAA champion and also 6-2 Colegio de San Juan de Letran on Friday to clinch the top-seed. Jaerico Nunez and Arthur Roque top-scored for them with 14 points apiece.


Jose Rizal University then stretched its streak to three after overwhelming severely-shorthanded San Beda University, 80-72.

Shawn Argente remained red-hot with 18 points built on four triples and Ry Dela Rosa contributed 14 points and six rebounds, as the Heavy Bombers took control from tip-off and never let the seven-man Red Lions find their footing. They led by as much as 13 en route to a 4-4 record.

Very happy kasi even though kulang ang San Beda, we all know they’re still a team to beat. The boys did the job today,” said assistant coach Alex Callueng, talking for shot-caller Louie Gonzalez.

San Beda closed its campaign at 3-6, even with Bryan Sajonia pouring in 24 points on top of 11 rebounds, four assists, three blocks, and two steals.


The Scores:

First Game:
EAC 79 – Maguliano 22, Cosa 14, Robin 10, Luciano 10, Cosejo 9, Ednilag 9, Gurtiza 4, Bacud 1, Domiguez 0, Umpad 0, Balowa 0, Ochavo 0

Perpetual 71 – Roque 14, Nunez 14, Ferreras 10, Nitura 9, Pagaran 8, Cuevas 5, Razon 4, Boral 3, Ramirez 3, Orgo 1, Barcuma 0, Sevilla 0, Geslano 0, Caugiran 0

Quarterscores: 22-22, 47-40, 65-53, 79-71

Second Game:
Adamson 109 – Hanapi 12, Manzano 11, Montebon 11, Torres 10, Calisay 10, Anabo 9, Ramos 8, Sicat 8, Canete 7, Ignacio 6, Erolon 6, Fuentebella 4, Colonia 4, Barasi 2, Magbuhos 0

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FAITH 63 – Fernado 15, Dimawala 13, Navarez 13, Villamor 9, Amparo 5, Millares 3, Laylo 3, Llamado 2, De Castro 0, Manipol 0

Quarterscores: 23-21, 51-36, 80-51, 108-63

Third Game:
JRU 80 – Argente 18, Dela Rosa 14, Ramos 10, De Leon 8, Guiab 6, Medina 6, Mosqueda 4, Pabico 4, Arenal 3, Sy 3, Sarmiento 2, Bongay 2, Barrera 0, De Jesus 0, Raymundo 0

San Beda 72 – Sajonia 24, Etulle 16, Alloso 15, Tagala 11, Jalbuena 6, Teruel 0, Dimaculangan 0

Quarterscores: 18-17, 40-34, 65-53, 80-72

Fourth Game:
Ateneo 73 – Ballungay 15, Obasa 14, Lazaro 9, Quitevis 6, Gomez 6, Credo 5, Tuano 5, Nieto 4, Espinosa 3, Padrigao 3, Chiu 2, Ong 1

UE 56 – Remogat 13, Sawat 10, Rosete 8, Alcantara 8, Lingo-Lingo 6, J Dumont-Cruz 5, Galang 3, Gilbuena 3, Robles 0, Tomas 0, Maga 0, Maglupay 0, Langit 0, Maxie 0

Quarterscores: 17-15, 37-35, 61-42, 73-56

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