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Ateneo does not let up against UE to secure twice-to-beat



Philippine Sports News - Tiebreaker Times Ateneo does not let up against UE to secure twice-to-beat ADMU Basketball News UAAP UE  Vince Tolentino UE Men's Basketball UAAP Season 80 Men's Basketball UAAP Season 80 Thirdy Ravena Tab Baldwin Mark Olayon Mark Maloles Jolo Mendoza Derrick Pumaren Ateneo Men's Basketball

Once the Blue Eagles limited Alvin Pasaol, it was all over for the Red Warriors

For the second straight season, Ateneo de Manila University will be armed with a twice-to-beat edge heading into the post-season, after hammering the University of the East, 97-73, Saturday afternoon at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.

“We’re happy to get this one under our belt. Every game is a step forward for our team. We wanted to focus and play well in this game. What worked for us is the quality of our performance,” said second-year Blue Eagles head coach Tab Baldwin.

Besides picking up the twice-to-beat advantage, Ateneo were able to pick up their 11th win in as many outings. UE, on the other hand, were sent to the brink of elimination with a 3-9 record.

Thirdy Ravena led four Ateneans in double-figures with 17 points on 6-for-9 shooting, while grabbing eight rebounds and dishing out four assists. Moreover, it was his defense on Pasaol that drew a good review from Baldwin.

“Right from the get-go, we attacked him and got some fouls on him. When Alvin’s playing three, he’s a handful. We did a good job defensively on him, Thirdy was able to stand his ground,” said the former national team tactician.

“Alvin is a scoring machine, he is tough and physical. Na-challenge kami to defend him and sa outfit ni coach Derrick [Pumaren],” quipped Ravena.

Pasaol was limited to just single digits for the first time this season, scoring just eight points on a horrid 2-for-11 shooting. He was averaging 22.2 points prior to this game. Moreover, the burly forward was foul-plagued for the entire game, as he picked up his fourth foul with 6:52 still on the clock.

With Pasaol already taken care off, it was the rest of the Blue Eagles that stepped up.

Ravena, together with Jolo Mendoza and Kris Porter, sparked a huge second quarter outing for the Blue Eagles that saw last season’s runners-up score 27 points. Vince Tolentino then picked it up in the third frame.

Mendoza finished with 13 markers off the bench on a perfect 4-for-4 clip, while Tolentino added 12 points.

Ateneo would lead by as much as 31 points, 91-60, after a Kris Porter triple with 3:32 left.

“Our 26 assists is good and our defense our catchy but I still think that our 16 turnovers was too much. There’s still a lot of things we need to work on,” added Baldwin.

Rookie Mark Maloles had an excellent outing, going 9-for-13 from the field for 20 points. Mark Olayon added 15 markers.

However, besides displaying their trademark ball movement, the Blue Eagles showed grit on the boards, out-rebounding the Red Warriors 46-29.

Ateneo will next face the hapless University of Santo Tomas Growling Tigers on Saturday, November 4, at 2:00pm. UE, on the other hand, look to save their hopes when they take on the Far Eastern University Tamaraws on Sunday, November 5, at 2:00pm. Both games will be played at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.

The Scores:

Ateneo (97) – Ravena 17, Mendoza 13, Tolentino 12, Verano 12, Asistio 9, Porter 9, Nieto Mi. 7, Ikeh 7, Mamuyac 3, Nieto Ma. 2, Go 2, Black 2, Andrade 2, Tio 0, White 0.

UE (73) – Maloles 20, Olayon 15, Pasaol 8, Bartolome 7, Cullar 5, Varilla 5, Acuno 4, Derige 4, Manalang 3, Conner 2, Cruz 0, Toribio 0.

Quarterscores: 21-18, 48-35, 71-52, 97-73