By Ivan Saldajeno
SAN JUAN, MM--Ateneo put a quick end to FEU-FERN's UAAP juniors basketball playoff return with an 84-68 victory in the first round of the stepladder knockout stages at the FilOil Flying V Centre on Wednesday.
The Blue Eaglets took control of most parts of the game and never gave the Baby Tamaraws a chance to inch closer in the second half.
SJ Belangel tallied 15 points on 7-of-8 shooting, two rebounds, eight assists, and one steal, while Jolo Mendoza added 14 points, three rebounds, three assists, two steals, and one block for Ateneo, which will take on La Salle-Zobel in the semifinals beginning on Monday with the latter holding a twice-to-beat advantage.
Kenji Roman made 21 markers, 13 caroms, and three assists for FEU-FERN, which made a comeback to the playoffs after missing the cut last year.
Ateneo 84-Belangel 15, Mendoza 14, Mamuyac 13, Berjay 9, Eustaquio 9, Andrade 8, Credo 6, Sh. Ildefonso 5, Gatmaytan 2, Bernardo 2, Rosales 1, Se. Ildefonso 0, Jaime 0, Soriano 0
FEU-FERN 68-Roman 21, Gloria 13, Sapinit 11, Jabel 9, Gonzales 8, Beren 2, Boc 2, Torres 2, Gabane 0, Celzo 0, Belgica 0, Mariano 0, Garcia 0, Ramos 0
Quarterscores: 20-14, 35-28, 63-47, 84-68
Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno