Tyler Tio’s career game fueled Ateneo de Manila University’s 91-80 win over University of Santo Tomas to complete the defending champions’ perfect first round in the UAAP Season 84 Men’s Basketball Tournament, Saturday, at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
Tio, who had 20 points, three assists, and two rebounds, extended the Blue Eagles’ lead to as much as 82-58, Ateneo’s biggest of the ballgame, courtesy of a floater with 7:58 remaining in the contest.
The result allows Ateneo to sweep the first round with a 7-0 record and extend its winning streak to 33 matches while UST does so with 2-5.
Beforehand, the Blue Eagles enjoyed a hot start to the contest as the scorelines read 50-30 off Matthew Daves’ basket at the deep in the second quarter.
Come the third quarter, UST was able to execute a 9-0 run early in the period behind baskets from Nic Cabanero, Sherwin Concepcion, and Joshua Fontanilla to trim the deficit to 43-50, only for Ateneo to retaliate as Gian Mamuyac’s five straight points allowed the Blue Eagles to end the period 74-58.
“UST has always been like that,” said Ateneo lead assistant Sandy Arespacochaga. “We gave up 80 points. That’s a little bit too much for us. We’re happy we came out with a win.”
BJ Andrade followed Tio’s lead with 10 points. Chris Koon and SJ Belangel scored nine points each while Ange Kouame and Josh Lazaro seized 10 and 11 rebounds respectively.
Mostly behind Tio’s production, the Blue Eagles’ bench produced 56 points compared to the Growling Tigers’ 33.
“We have a lot of lessons that we can learn from in the first round,” added Arespacochaga. “The key is we improve heading into the next round. We’ll watch tape and we’ll prepare for our next opponent.”
Concepcion led UST with 22 points followed by Paul Manalang’s 10. Fontanilla had nine points, Cabanero had nine points and nine rebounds, and Bryan Santos had nine points.
Ateneo 91 – Tio 20, Andrade 10, Koon 9, Belangel 9, Kouame 8, Mamuyac 8, Ildefonso 6, Daves 6, Lazaro 4, Gomez 3, Chiu 3, Padrigao 3, Verano 2, Malillin 0, Mendoza 0.
UST 80 – Concepcion 22, Manalang 10, Fontanilla 9, Cabanero 9, Santos 9, Pangilinan 8, Mantua 5, Manaytay 3, Gomez de Liano 3, Ando 2, Sumudio 0.
Quarterscores: 27-19, 50-33, 74-58, 91-80.