Ateneo scrapes past Akatsuki Five reserves to end slump

Ateneo's Angelo Kouame stand tall against Japan's second team to level their card in the Jones Cup. file.
By Kevin Estrada

MANILA--Ateneo de Manila nearly had their wire to wire lead gone to waste but held their nerve against Japan's second team in an 80-74 win to level their Jones Cup record Wednesday evening in Taipei, Taiwan.

Four Blue Eagles scored in double figures with FilOil MVP Angelo Kouame leading the way with 15 points and had 14 rebounds as well to complete the double-double to end their slide after back-to-back defeats to South Korea and Canada's 3D Sports.

The reigning UAAP titlists also had Thirdy Ravena chipping in 14 and the returning Adrian Wong had 11 to get them to 2-2 ahead of their tiff with Indonesia's CLS Knights on Thursday.

Takuma Sato paced the Akatsuki Five reserves with 12 points, but they melted down the stretch when he slapped Wong's head in frustration while trailing 73-70 with 14.2 second remaining in the game.

Wong then converted four free throws to cause another upset against a national side.

The Scores:

ATENEO 80 - Kouame 15, Ravena 14, Wong 11, Matt Nieto 10, Mamuyac 9, Mendoza 8, Mike Nieto 5, Verano 4, Black 2, Go 2, Maagdenberg 0, White 0.

JAPAN 74 - Sato 12, Takahashi 11, Imamura 10, Hashimoto 9, Tamaki 8, Namizato 6, Hiraiwa 5, Toews 5, Schafer 5, Nakanishi 3, Sugiura 0, Inoue 0.

Quarterscores: 21-13, 37-31, 60-55, 80-74.

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