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Blue Eaglets near elimination round sweep after blasting Junior Warriors

By Dugout Philippines

Ateneo closed in on an outright Finals appearance as the Blue Eaglets clobbered UE, 101-77, yesterday in the UAAP Season 77 juniors basketball tournament.

Twin brothers Mike and Matthew Nieto combined for 37 points and 22 rebounds while Jolo Mendoza added 17 points as Ateneo extended its perfect run to 13 games at the Blue Eagle gym.

In other matches, Adamson shocked titleholder NU, 74-64, La Salle-Zobel prevailed over UST, 66-53, and FEU-Diliman defeated UPIS, 60-52.

The Eaglets gun for the first championship berth with a tremendous thrice-to-beat incentive against the Bullpups at 3 p.m. on Saturday at the Katipunan venue.

NU dropped to 9-4 slate, as the Bullpups are only assured so far of a semis playoff.

James Pasturan shot 18 points as the Baby Falcons, who will face the already-eliminated Tiger Cubs in the final day of elims on Saturday, kept their Final Four hopes alive tying the Junior Archers and the Baby Tamaraws from third to fifth places at 8-5.

Aljun Melecio had 19 points while Joaquin Banzon added 14 markers for La Salle-Zobel, which will face FEU-Diliman in a virtual do-or-die match also on Saturday.

Christian Fajarito led the Baby Tamaraws with 19 points while Brandrey Bienes contributed 14 points.

The Tiger Cubs (5-8), the Junior Maroons (1-12) and the Junior Warriors (0-13) are already out of running.