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Ateneo rips UE

Ateneo de Manila University turned to its suffocating defense in the third quarter to blow past University of the East, 91-76, at the end of the University Athletic Association of the Philippines Season 85 men’s basketball tournament first round on Sunday at the Ynares Sports Center in Antipolo.

The Blue Eagles held the Red Warriors to just six points in the first 10 minutes of the second half while ripping down UE’s zone defense with 19 points in the third period on their way to a rout.

Ateneo won its second straight game and grabbed solo third with a 5-2 win-loss record.

“We played very good basketball today, especially in the second half,” Ateneo coach Tab Baldwin said.

The Blue Eagles opened the second half with 17 unanswered points capped by an Ange Kouame basket to turn a slim 46-44 lead entering halftime to a commanding 63-44 advantage with 4:57 left in the third quarter.

“We were getting good looks and they were missing their shots,” Dave Ildefonso said of Ateneo’s decisive third quarter thrust.

Ildefonso led the Blue Eagles, who scored their 10th straight win over the Red Warriors dating back to 2015, with 20 points on 8-of-17 field goal shooting and grabbed four rebounds.

Kai Ballungay gave Ateneo its biggest lead of the game 83-61 in the last 3:27 of the fourth quarter on a two-handed baseline slamdunk off an assist from Forthsky Padrigao.

Ballungay posted 14 points and pulled down five rebounds while Padrigao flirted with a double-double with 11 points and nine assists laced with three steals in 22 minutes of action for the Blue Eagles.

BJ Andrade got 11 points and eight rebounds while Ange Kouame had a silent eight-point outing but plucked 10 boards and swatted away two UE shots.

The Red Warriors were held scoreless in the first six minutes of the third quarter and only made two field goals courtesy of Jalen Stevens and Rey Remogat as Ateneo entered the payoff period with a 65-50 lead.

A Matthew Garcia triple puts Ateneo ahead, 73-53, in the last 6:44 of the game. UE just traded baskets in the next plays with the outcome of the game already decided.

The Red Warriors closed the first round with back-to-back setbacks for a 3-4 slate tied with Adamson University and De La Salle University at fourth.

Kyle Paranada and Harvey Pagsanjan led the Red Warriors with 17 points each while Luis Villegas 10 markers and 13 rebounds in a losing effort.

The Scores:

ATENEO (91) — Ildefonso 20, Ballungay 14, Padrigao 11, Andrade 11, Kouame 8, Lazaro 6, Garcia 6, Fornilos 4, Gomez 3, Koon 2, Chiu 2, Quitevis 2, Daves 2, Fetalvero 0, Lao 0, Ong 0.

UE (76) — Pagsanjan 17, K. Paranada 17, Villegas 10, Stevens 8, Remogat 6, Payawal 5, Alcantara 4, Sawat 2, Beltran 0, Antiporda 0, Guevarra 0.

Quarters: 21-21, 46-44, 65-50, 91-76.

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