Archers dominate rivals, complete first round sweep

Ben Mbala with a two-handed throwdown for the exclamation point.
By JP Abcede

PASAY--De La Salle, sans Jeron Teng and head coach Aldin Ayo, mastered the Ateneo de Manila University Blue Eagles, 97-81, on Sunday at the Mall of Asia Arena to complete a sweep of the first round of the UAAP men’s basketball competition.

After ADMU started the second period with two straight three-pointers, the Green Archers responded with a 13-0 run and never looked back, leading by as many as 27, 85-58, early in the final period.

Big Ben Mbala spearheaded the domination with numbers of 28 points on 11/13 shooting, 13 rebounds, and five steals in 30 minutes of action.

Both Andrei Caracut and Abu Tratter shot 50% on the field to finish with 14 and ten markers, respectively.

Adrian Wong led the Eagles with 15 points, four rebounds, and four assists, as Matthew Nieto came up with 13.

Anton Asistio and Thirdy Ravena finished with 11 markers each, the latter completing a double-double with 11 boards.

The green and white crew more than had double the offensive rebounds (23) and four times more steals (16) than Ateneo. The victors had 21 second chance points as well as 21 fast break points in 13 attempts.

The Katipunan-based squad committed 30 turnovers, letting DLSU score 33 points off those errors.

The Eagles conclude the first round with a 4-3 win-loss record, good enough to be tied for third with whichever team loses in the game between National University and Far Eastern University on Wednesday. Adamson University can join in that logjam if it wins against University of Santo Tomas three days from now.

Box Scores:

La Salle 97–Mbala 28, Caracut 14, Tratter 10, R Rivero 8, Montalbo 8, Torres 8, Perkins 5, Melecio 5, Dyke 4, Paraiso 2, Go 2, Baltazar 2, P Rivero 1, Sargent 0

Ateneo 81–Wong 15, Ma Nieto 13, Asistio 11, Ravena 11, Mendoza 9, Ikeh 7, Porter 6, Go 5, Babilonia 2, Mi Nieto 2, Tolentino 0, Verano 0.

Quarterscores: 20-20, 53-36, 80-58, 97-81