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Ravena, Nieto twins turn sentimental after playing last Ateneo-La Salle elims game

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Tiebreaker Times Ravena, Nieto twins turn sentimental after playing last Ateneo-La Salle elims game ADMU Basketball News UAAP  UAAP Season 82 Men's Basketball UAAP Season 82 Thirdy Ravena Mike Nieto Matt Nieto Ateneo Men's Basketball

Ever since they were in high school, Thirdy Ravena and brothers Matt and Mike Nieto always looked forward to the game pitting age-old rivals Ateneo against La Salle.

But Sunday afternoon might have been the last time they square off against the Green Archers.

After 15 meetings with La Salle, Ravena and the Nieto twins ended their tally against their arch-rivals with a 9-6 slate. The Blue Eagles picked up a 77-69 win at the jampacked SM Mall of Asia Arena.

If the two teams will not square off in the post-season, this was their last Ateneo-La Salle game.

“It’s very emotional especially for us true blues.

“All the preparation, all that imagination of hitting the last shot for the win when I was young, boils down on today. It’s all finished. We will never again experience the same hype, intensity, level of competition like La Salle. I will miss it super,” shared Matt Nieto, who had four assists, three rebounds, three points, two steals, and a block in 23 minutes of game time.

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“Nakakalungkot ‘yung thought na after all these years, it will come to an end,” added Thirdy Ravena, who tallied 13 points and seven rebounds.

Speaking on behalf of his brother Matt, Ateneo skipper Mike shared that growing up, they watched their dad Jet’s games against La Salle over and over again.

Tiebreaker Times Ravena, Nieto twins turn sentimental after playing last Ateneo-La Salle elims game ADMU Basketball News UAAP  UAAP Season 82 Men's Basketball UAAP Season 82 Thirdy Ravena Mike Nieto Matt Nieto Ateneo Men's Basketball

“Nung bata kami, pinapanood lang namin si Daddy na ‘yung VCD. Pinapanood namin nung first o second championship nila with Ateneo,” Mike shared as their father played for Ateneo during the late-80s.

“Sabi namin balang araw, makakalaro din kami sa Ateneo-La Salle.”

For his part, Ravena shared that he controlled his emotions all game long. The two-time UAAP Finals MVP knows that the true goal of the season is to be the one hoisting the championship.

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“The fact of the matter is we’re still in-season. We still have to focus on the other teams that we’re gonna play because the next game is the most important game — that’s our mentality,” Ravena opined.

“Yung mga ganung emotions, we can celebrate those after. We just have to make sure to do our jobs.”

Still, Mike knows that La Salle is capable of making it to the post-season despite dropping to a tie for fourth with a 4-5 slate. Moreover, he knows that there’s a possibility that they meet once more in the post-season.

“La Salle has the capability to extend its own season. Every team has its chances, and with Aljun, Andrei, and Justine Baltazar leading the way, it’s probable naman na aabot sila together with the other teams,” Mike shared.

But if Matt had his way, he wants this game to be the last time he faces La Salle.

Tiebreaker Times Ravena, Nieto twins turn sentimental after playing last Ateneo-La Salle elims game ADMU Basketball News UAAP  UAAP Season 82 Men's Basketball UAAP Season 82 Thirdy Ravena Mike Nieto Matt Nieto Ateneo Men's Basketball

“This game, sabi namin matalo na tayo sa lahat ‘wag lang sa La Salle. Kaya sobrang saya if ever this will be my last Ateneo versus La Salle game. I can say that I won it in my last year,” he said.

“Hindi na sila makakabawi sa akin.”

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