MANILA, Philippines – The UST Growling Tigers completed their slow-cooked turnaround with an 8-6 finish in the UAAP Season 82 men’s basketball tournament.
That’s largely thanks to the elite coaching of Aldin Ayo and the stellar performances of first-year players Soulemane Chabi Yo and Mark Nonoy, who were named season MVP and Rookie of the Year, respectively.
Chabi Yo eclipsed Ateneo’s Ange Kouame with 76 statistical points (SPs) built on averages of 16.9 points and a league-best 14.7 rebounds per game.
UAAP rules state that only one foreign student-athlete can qualify for the MVP race, meaning UST’s Beninese forward takes the cake over Ateneo’s Ivorian tower.
Nonoy, meanwhile, led all rookies with norms of 10 points, 3.9 rebounds and 2.3 assists for 39.29 SPs.
La Salle’s Justine Baltazar and Jamie Malonzo came in 2nd and 3rd in the Mythical Five rankings with 64 and 63.23 SPs, respectively, after the Archers wound up at 5th place for the second straight year.
Baltazar averaged 15.1 points, 11.8 rebounds and 1.1 blocks as La Salle’s main man while Malonzo made the most of his one-and-done season with norms of 15.8 markers, 9.9 boards and 1.1 steals.
UP star transferee Kobe Paras finished 4th with 62.08 SPs while UE’s one-and-done hero Rey Suerte completed the Mythical Team with 60.93 SPs.
Paras posted all-around averages of 17.4 points, 5.7 rebounds, 1.9 assists, 1.2 steals and 1.3 blocks while Suerte normed 17.6 markers, 6.8 boards, 3.9 dimes and 1.2 swipes. – Rappler.com