Balanced Ateneo overwhelms UP for back-to-back wins

Balanced Ateneo overwhelms UP for back-to-back wins
THIS IS OURS. Tyler Tio was just one of the many Ateneo players who starred in their win in "The Battle of Katipunan" against UP.

For the second time in a row, Ateneo de Manila University exhibited its enviable depth in the 80th Season of the UAAP Men’s Basketball Tournament.

Tyler Tio scored 10 of his 14 points in the Blue Eagles' 30-point final frame as they frustrated hyped up University of the Philippines, 92-71, on Wednesday at the Araneta Coliseum.

The first-year player was making his debut after a left ankle sprain forced him to miss the season-opener. “It was a very good performance considering it’s his first game,” coach Sandy Arespacochaga said of his breakout player.

In the end, Tio left a good first impression and made all of his six shots.

Thirdy Ravena also remained a force with 16 points and six rebounds in this one. “When we get the ball moving, we don’t know where the offense will come from. That’s a good thing,” the mentor said.

In their first game in the tournament, Ateneo had Chibueze Ikeh impose his will down low.

This time around, the Katipunan-based squad rained down a total of nine triples to bury their opponents.

And when they missed, they then worked hard on the glass to grant themselves another shot, finishing with a massive 31-7 edge in second chance points.

So on-point were they that even debuting Troy Mallillin also contributed as his offensive rebound and free throws capped off the 22-11 run that turned a two-point lead into a 44-31 advantage late in the second period.

In the fourth, it was then the Tio show as he fired 10 points in the 12-3 run to start the quarter for a 74-54 lead in favor of his team.

And in the end, the Blue Eagles won by 21 points against another playoff hopeful, just four days after winning by 20, 85-65 against Adamson University. “It might have been a 20-point win for us, but we want to keep on improving,” the coach said.

While the offense was on-point, their defense wasn’t so bad either as they shackled State U main man Paul Desiderio into only nine points in 4-of-18 shooting.

In his place, super rookie Juan Gomez de Liano topped the scoring for the Fighting Maroons with 16 points on top of seven rebounds, two assists, and two steals.

Without any answer for Ateneo’s firepower, however, UP was dragged down onto a 1-1 standing.

BOX SCORES

ATENEO 92 – Ravena 16, Tio 14, Black 9, Ikeh 9, Asistio 7, Nieto Ma. 7, Verano 7, Go 6, Nieto Mi. 5, Porter 4, Mendoza 3, Mamuyac 2, Mallillin 2, Tolentino 1, Andrade 0, White 0.

UP 71 – Gomez De Liaño Ju. 16, Manzo 14, Lim 10, Desiderio 9, Gomez De Liaño Ja. 6, Prado 6, Webb 3, Romero 3, Ouattara 2, Lao 2, Vito 0, Harris 0, Dario 0.

QUARTER SCORES: 22-16, 44-36, 62-51, 92-71

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