Ateneo sweeps to head straight to the Finals, La Salle and UE end seasons with wins

The Ateneo Blue Eagles get the sweep! The Blue Eagles dominated the second-seeded UP Fighting Maroons, 86-64 to complete the 14-game conquest of the Eliminations. The Maroons finish the Second Round at 9-5.

Angelo Kouame saved his best game for last, scoring a season-high 20 points on 62% shooting with 12 rebounds and five blocks. SJ Belangel came off the bench to spark a run in the second quarter. He finished with 14 points on 55% shooting. Will Navarro had 13 points in his return after a head injury and Thirdy Ravena had 11. Kobe Paras led UP with 13 points.

The Fighting Maroons started the game out like they did in the First Round. They quickened the pace and forced the Blue Eagles into a run-and-gun affair. With their outside shooting clicking, UP took a three-point lead to start the second quarter. It was at that point when Belangel led the Blue Eagles.

He assisted on a Gian Mamuyac layup and then scored on a jumper to help Ateneo reclaim the lead. Belangel then scored five straight points to extend Ateneo’s run to 9-2 helping them take a four-point lead. The starters came in and continue the demolition job. The Blue Eagles went on a 14-2 run led by Kouame and Navarro to take a 16-point lead. Ateneo settled for a 13-point lead heading to the half.

Ateneo continued their dominance in the second half, extending the lead to as high as 22 points as their methodical offense and defense dissected UP. They controlled the game all the way to the end.

In the first game of the day, the UE Red Warriors eked out a 79-77 win over the NU Bulldogs to end their Season 82 campaign. UE finishes the season with 4 wins and 10 losses while the Bulldogs end up with a 2-12 record.

In his final game in the collegiate level, Rey Suerte put on a show, soring 28 points with six rebounds, three assists, three steals and two blocks. Alex Diakhite backed him up with 17 points and 12 rebounds. JV Gallego and Dave Ildefonso scored 20 points each to lead NU.

It was also Suerte that delivered the dagger to lift the Red Warriors past the Bulldogs. After Ildefonso tied the game with a layup over Diakhite, the Red Warriors went to the hot hand in their final play. With 33 seconds left, Suerte got the ball on the left side of the court. He faked going right before driving left to scored a one-handed floater over Issa Gaye, giving the Red Warriors a two-point lead.

The Bulldogs had their chances but they failed to find the equalizer in the end game. Suerte then iced the game with two freebies from the line to seal the win for UE.

The La Salle Green Archers also closed out their season with a win. They dominated the Adamson Falcons from start to finish, 89-63 to end their season on a high note. La Salle finished at the fifth spot with a 7-7 record while Adamson stays at sixth with a 4-10 slate.

Jaime Malonzo sent a statement in the final game of the his lone season. He put up 34 points and grabbed 12 rebounds to end his UAAP career. Andrei Caracut, also playing his final game had 14 points for La Salle. AP Manlapaz led the Falcons with 15 points.

Malonzo and Caracut started the game on fire. The two combined for all the points in the 13-0 run to start the game. Malonzo drained two triples during that run while Caracut added one. La Salle jumped out to the big lead to open the game and never looked back. Malonzo led the Green Archers with 19 points in the first half, as the Green Archers took a 21-point lead to the half.

It was a wire-to-wire win for the Green Archers. They built a lead as high as 30 points in the third period and cruised all the way to their win.