UST eliminates NU from UAAP Final Four race
ANTIPOLO CITY—University of Santo Tomas was all business in handling National University en route to an 88-76 victory in the UAAP Season 82 men’s basketball tournament at Ynares Center here.
The Growling Tigers were recently embroiled in a recruitment saga surrounding Rhenz Abando, but played without distraction and sent the Bulldogs reeling to a league-worst 2-9 and out of Final Four contention.
UST, which welcomed back Abando after a benching incident in the last game, led by as much as 23 points, 58-35, before NU managed to cut it down to just nine, 65-56, heading into the fourth.
The Growling Tigers then stepped on the gas pedal and built a new 20-point lead, 88-68, off a 23-13 run late in the game.
“They were having fun but they know that there’s still the responsibility in playing,” said UST head coach Aldin Ayo.
Soulemane Chabi Yo put up a 17-point, 14-rebound double-double for the Tigers while CJ Cansino had a season-high 15 points, on 6-of-12 shooting, five rebounds, and three steals.
Renzo Subido and Mark Nonoy also finished in double figures with 14 and 12 points, respectively, while Abando looked aggressively for his shots and finished with nine points on 4-of-13 shooting.
Dave Ildefonso had a game-high 27 points with six rebounds for the Bulldogs, who are missing the Final Four for the fourth straight season.
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