UP wins ‘Battle of Katipunan’, UE notches first win streak

By Maxine Louise Lagman

MANILA, Philippines – The University of the Philippines (UP) and University of the East (UE) survived their gritty opponents to take back-to-back wins in the UAAP Season 85 men’s basketball tournament on Sunday, October 16, at the SM Mall of Asia Arena.

Defending champs Fighting Maroons defeated Ateneo de Manila University (ADMU) in overtime, 76-71.

With a three-point advantage, UP’s Malick Diouf and Terrence Fortea split their four freebies to extend their lead to five, 73-68, 32.1 ticks left in overtime. Forthsky Padrigao answered with a triple for Ateneo, 71-73, 23.4 seconds left.

Carl Tamayo split his free throws for a 74-41 lead. Kai Ballungay attempted a trey to boost the Blue Eagles, but failed. Diouf sealed the win for UP with a couple of freebies.

“I believe that we played better as a team. We moved the ball well, we really tried to work on especially ‘yung offense namin,” said UP head coach Goldwin Monteverde.

Tamayo led UP with 20 points and 13 rebounds, while James Spencer finished with 14 markers and six boards as they join National University (NU) at the top spot with a 4-1 slate.

Dave Ildefonso had a 22-point, 12-rebound double-double for Ateneo, while Padrigao chipped in 15 markers, four rebounds and four assists in the loss. They are now at 3-2 with De La Salle University (DLSU) and UE.

On the other hand, UE sailed through its second consecutive victory in the tournament after stomping the University of Santo Tomas (UST), 78-68.

This is the Red Warriors’ first win against the Growling Tigers since 2017, and its first winning streak since Season 82.

Coming off a stunning win last week against DLSU, UE did not waste time discarding UST. The Red Warriors went on a 14-4 run off a Luis Villegas’ triple for a 13-point lead, 73-60, 1:28 left.

The Growling Tigers managed to add eight more points to their tally, but time ran out with UE clinching another victory to tie with La Salle at 3-2 for fourth.

Villegas led UE with a double-double record of 17 points and 13 rebounds on top of six assists and three steals. Nikko Paranada chipped in another 17 markers with six boards and four assists.

On the other hand, Nic Cabanero paced UST with 19 points and 14 rebounds, while Ivan Lazarte added 12 markers as they fell to 1-4.

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