Thirdyís takeover for Ateneo fends off fighting FEU

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Sep 14, 2016 04:38 PM
Thirdyís takeover for Ateneo fends off fighting FEU
MY TURN. Thirdy Ravena and Anton Asistio outscored all of their opponents, 10-5, in the last two minutes.

Ateneo de Manila University lost its longtime go-to-guy with the graduation of Kiefer Ravena.

Fortunately for them, another Ravena was just waiting in the wings now in the UAAP 79 Men’s Basketball Tournament.

Scoring half of the his team’s last 10 points, Thirdy Ravena delivered the haymaker that allowed the Blue Eagles to knock out defending champion Far Eastern University, 76-71, on Wednesday at the MOA Arena.

Following a dismal two-point performance the last time around, the second-year swingman already tripled that in the first quarter alone. It was his entry off the bench that turned the tides for Ateneo as he accounted for six points in the 14-0 run that erased their one-point deficit and established a 23-10 advantage early in the second.

Asked what changed from then to now, Ravena answered, “Yung mentality ko coming into the game, relaxed lang. Yun lang kasi once we stick to the system, the game’s gonna come to you.”

Facing off against the Tamaraws who have made team effort their trademark, the Eagles showcased big-time balance of their own and counted six players who contributed at least seven points. Adrian Wong and Jolo Mendoza had 13 and 10 points, respectively.

Still, FEU wasn’t giving the game away that easy and rode Raymar Jose into tying the tally at 66 with 2:17 remaining. It was at that point, however, that Ravena took over and connived with Anton Asistio for the 10-5 counter that sealed the deal on Ateneo’s second win in three games.

“We have a lot of improvement, but we feel our effort and focus especially on defense was there,” a satisfied coach Sandy Arrespacochaga said. His wards limited the defending champions to a paltry 37 percent shooting while also forcing 17 turnovers.

On the other hand, the Tamaraws got derailed again and now stand at 1-2 in their title defense. Sophomore Wendell Comboy broke out with 20 points, but only had two in the endgame just with his squad searching for a go-to-guy.

BOX SCORES

ATENEO 76 – Ravena 17, Wong 13, Mendoza 10, Nieto Mi 9, Ikeh 8, Asistio 7, Nieto Ma 5, Babilonia 2, Go 2, Black 2, Tolentino 1, Porter 0, Verano 0, Ildefonso 0

FEU 71 – Comboy 20, Jose 16, Orizu 16, Escoto 7, Bayquin 4, Nunag 4, Dennison 2, Holmqvist 2, Trinidad 0, Inigo 0, Arong 0, Roxas 0, Tuffin 0, Ebona 0

QUARTER SCORES: 18-10, 37-27, 58-47, 76-71

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