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Amos keeps Blue Eagles flying


‘Honestly, it was a team effort. If we didn’t have all our guys stepping up today, I don’t think we’d get the job done, so props to the team.’

PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF UAAP MASON Amos’ impressive performance of late brings defending champion Ateneo to greater heights.

Rookie Mason Amos stepped up big time in a couple of games that pushed defending champion Ateneo de Manila University in the upper half of the standings to end the first round.

The Filipino-Australian was at the forefront of the Blue Eagles’ sudden surge following a wobbly start in the University Athletic Association of the Philippines Season 86 men’s basketball tournament.

His stellar performance was instrumental as Ateneo collared its first back-to-back wins of the season capped by an amazing 99-89 overtime victory over erstwhile unbeaten University of the Philippines last Sunday at the Mall of Asia Arena.

Amos’ series of heroic outings were enough to get the nod as Collegiate Press Corps UAAP Men’s Player of the Week for the period 16 to 22 October.

The versatile forward, a gold medalist for Gilas Pilipinas in the Phnom Penh Southeast Asian Games, came up big in the “Battle of Katipunan” as he unloaded 19 points on 6-of-10 shooting laced with 10 rebounds to lift the Blue Eagles over the Fighting Maroons.

In fact, it was his personal 5-0 spurt that broke the 85-all deadlock with 2:14 left to play in the extra period. He would nail another basket down the stretch that made it impossible for UP to mount a comeback as it improved to a 4-3 win-loss card.

Blue Eagles head coach Tab Baldwin acknowledged the big shots made by his players in overtime, especially Amos, noting that it was the only way to win big games.

But Amos downplayed his numbers, crediting the victory to all his teammates and their impressive defense in the anticipated rematch of last season’s finals.

“Honestly, it was a team effort. If we didn’t have all our guys stepping up today, I don’t think we’d get the job done, so props to the team,” Amos said following the morale-boosting win.

“We really played defense until the final buzzer and we went to OT. So, it was an up-and-down game, I just wanna give credit to the guys because they deserve it.”

Amos was also pivotal in Ateneo’s 97-77 win against the hapless University of Santo Tomas last Wednesday, dropping 15 points in just 12 minutes of action.

The 6-foot-7 cager averaged 17.0 points, 5.5 boards, and 2.0 dimes while shooting 60 percent from the three-point area to beat Nic Cabañero of UST and his teammate Chris Koon for the weekly honors presented by San Miguel Corporation and backed by minor sponsors Discovery Suites and Jockey.

Meanwhile, Tigresses star Kent Pastrana took it upon herself to pace her squad to consecutive triumphs to close the women’s division first round.

UST downed Ateneo, 90-67, last Wednesday before scoring an 82-66 pummeling of Far Eastern University last Saturday.

Pastrana ended the week with 22.5 points per game, including a 28-point outing against FEU, 5.5 rebounds, 4.5 steals, and 2.5 assists that propelled the Tigresses to the No. 3 spot with a 5-2 slate.

She outshone National University’s Karl Pingol and Jhaz Joson of Ateneo for the weekly citation.

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