Blue Eagles even record with victory over Maroons
AFTER A LONG climb, the defending champions Ateneo Blue Eagles have finally evened their record out after they once again thwarted the University of the Philippines (UP) Fighting Maroons, 67-59, in the 76th UAAP men’s basketball tournament yesterday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The Blue Eagles had to persist through some early struggles as they overhauled an 11-point first half deficit with an 11-1 run in second canto that gave them full control of the game en route to their fourth win in eight games. UP remained winless this season in eight outings.
For a while, the Maroons had the inside track on possibly their first win of the season as they established a 33-22 lead late in the second period.
But the Eagles finished the first half strong and unleashed an 11-1 rally that put them within one, 33-34, at halftime.
The Eagles then took over in the second half as they established leads that went as high as 12 in the fourth stanza.
Kiefer “The Phenom” Ravena paced the Eagles with a double-double performance of 14 points and 14 rebounds peppered with five assists and three steals while Juami Tiongson and Chris Newsome added 11 points apiece.
Joseph Marata was the lone double-digit scorer for UP with 15 markers.
In the second game, the University of the East (UE) Red Warriors once again had guard Roi Sumang to thank as they beat the University of Santo Tomas (UST) Growling Tigers, 68-67.
Sumang willed his team to the win with the go-ahead layup with just 11 seconds remaining, completing a 12-point fourth period that rallied UE from a 47-58 deficit./Correspondent Jonas Panerio
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.