La Salle bounces back, clobbers UST
Defending champion La Salle went back to its dominating ways and wallopped University of Santo Tomas, 115-86, in the UAAP Season 80 men’s basketball tournament Saturday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
After losing to University of the Philippines, 98-87, last week, the Green Archers vented their frustration on the miserable Growling Tigers, who have yet to win in six matches in what became as the team’s worst start since the 1993-1994 academic year.
La Salle remained in second seed with a 4-1 record behind undefeated Ateneo.
Green Archers assistant coach Miggy Solitaria said their win all depended on the team’s ball movement and stingy defense that has been La Salle’s staple since Aldin Ayo took over.
“We played unselfish basketball and we had 26 assists the whole game and it was very impressive because it was a very fast-paced game,” said Solitaria.
The Green Archers bamboozled the Growling Tigers on the defensive end and forced the latter to turn the ball over 35 times, leading to 37 points for La Salle.
La Salle built an 18-point lead, 60-42, at the break in what became as the Green Archers’ foundation until the final buzzer.
Ben Mbala had a game-high 29 points with nine rebounds and three blocks to lead the Green Archers while Andrei Caracut orchestrated the La Salle offense and finished with 14 points and five assists.
Wendell De Guzman led UST with 18 points, a career-high, while Steve Akomo finished with a 15-point, 13-rebound double-double.