UAAP: Ateneo clinches No. 1 spot, sends Adamson to playoff vs La Salle

Ange Kouame Ateneo Blue Eagles UAAP

Ateneo Ange Kouame Center. Tristan Tamayo’s photo/

MANILA, Philippines—Ateneo met stiff resistance before claiming a top spot in Round 4 of the UAAP Season 85 Men’s Basketball Finals with a breathtaking 66-61 win over Adamson Wednesday night at Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Ange Kouame came to the rescue with a power move from Dave Ildefonso’s messy three-ball before BJ Andrade’s free throws sealed the win, Ateneo’s 11th overall at the end of the knockout phase. 14 more matches.

The Blue Eagles drew with the University of the Philippines’ Fighting Maroons, but took the 1st seed and the reward was a double-beat advantage after emerging with better stats than the Maroons.

Kai Ballungay edged past Ateneo by 18 points, his three-back strikes and Koume’s two-handed tackle created a long run that gave them an 11-point lead at the start of the final inning.

“We know how much this game means to them, but we want it to be more,” said Balangay, who had three trebles and won 14 rebounds, eight of which were goals. attack, said.

But the Falcons, extremely serious about their ticket to the Finals, refused to consider it just a night as Adrian Manlapaz scored 17 of his game-high 22 points in the chase. dizzy in front of the Blue Eagles.

Cedrick Manzano pulled Adamson within a point with less than two minutes left before Kouame restored Ateneo’s order by putting himself in the paint in the absence of Lenda Douanga, who had previously sprained his right ankle.

“The quarterfinals are a whole new ball game. Our late game composure was good, but coach Tab (Baldwin) wasn’t happy with the way we lost the lead,” said Ateneo assistant coach Sandy Arespacochaga.

“We will certainly review and analyze. We’re looking at the big picture and we don’t want that disappointment,” added Arespacochaga.

The Falcons finished the second round with a draw with La Salle Green Archers, forcing both teams into the playoffs for the final and final place in Sunday’s Grand Finals to claim the right to face each other. against the Blue Eagles, the team once again finished as the leader. The No. 1 squad entered the semi-finals for the fifth consecutive season.

Likewise, the Maroons secured a one-time advantage over third-place National University Bulldogs in the semifinals.


ATENEO 66 — Ballungay 18, Andrade 13, Kouame 12, Koon 7, Padrigao 6, Ildefonso 3, Gomez 3, Chiu 2, Lazaro 2, Garcia 0, Quivis 0, Daves 0.

ADAMSON 61 — Manlapaz 22, Lastimosa 10, Douanga 7, Hanapi 5, Flower 5, Manzano 4, Yerro 4, Sabandal 2, V. Magbuhos 2, Colonia 0, Jaymalin 0, Barasi 0, Fuentebella 0, Barcelona 0, Torres 0, W. Magbuhos0.

Rounds: 17-16, 33-27, 49-41, 66-61.


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