UAAP Basketball

Contender NU blows out retooling champion Ateneo in UAAP Season 86 opener

JR Isaga

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Contender NU blows out retooling champion Ateneo in UAAP Season 86 opener

MOVE OVER. NU forward Jake Figueroa rebounds the ball against Ateneo center Joseph Obasa in the UAAP Season 86 men's basketball tournament

UAAP Season 86 Media Team

Coming off a second runner-up finish in UAAP Season 85, National University starts Season 86 strong with a statement rout of defending champion Ateneo

MANILA, Philippines – The rising NU Bulldogs stamped its class to begin the UAAP Season 86 men’s basketball tournament, blowing out the defending champion Ateneo Blue Eagles, 77-64, at the Mall of Asia Arena on Saturday, September 30.

Patrick Yu led a well-balanced offensive showing with 12 points on 3-of-4 shooting from three, as eight other Bulldogs scored at least 6 points. Kean Baclaan only added 4 points, but was every bit the floor general the team needed with a game-high 8 assists in just 17 minutes of action.

Facing a manageable 47-55 deficit entering the fourth quarter, Ateneo saw its comeback hopes slip away possession by possession as NU methodically hiked the score, pulling away with a pivotal 10-0 run ending with a Michael Malonzo layup with 6:49 left in regulation, 65-47.

By the time Ateneo got its first field goal of the quarter at the 3:37 mark off a Sean Quitevis layup, the Blue Eagles’ winning chances were practically gone as PJ Palacielo responded with his own short stab for an insurmountable, game-high 20-point lead, 72-52, with 3:26 left.

Gab Gomez and Quitevis paced the sorry opening day loss with 12 points apiece as Ian Espinosa chipped in 10 points.

The Scores

NU 77 – Yu 12, Enriquez 10, Padrones 9, Manansala 8, Palacielo 8, John 7, Figueroa 7, Malonzo 6, Lim 6, Baclaan 4, Jumamoy 0, Casinillo 0, Delos Reyes 0, Gulapa 0, Parks 0, Galinato 0.

Ateneo 64 – Gomez 12, Quitevis 12, Espinosa 10, Lazaro 6, Bongo 5, Credo 4, Koon 4, Ballungay 4, Brown 3, Amos 0, Obasa 0, Chiu 0, Nieto 0, Celis 0.

Quarters: 23-15, 36-32, 55-47, 77-64.

– Rappler.com

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