Filoil Preseason: Showing better consistency, UP routs Ateneo
MANILA, Philippines — University of the Philippines vented its ire on Ateneo, 95-70, in the 2023 Filoil EcoOil Preseason Cup on Wednesday at Filoil EcoOil Centre in San Juan.
The Fighting Maroons snapped their two-game skid, welcoming the UAAP defending champions with a 25-point blowout as Season 85 MVP Malick Diouf led the way with 16 points and eight rebounds.
Diouf gave UP an 8-0 start that set the tone for the lopsided game as LeBron Lopez scored a breakaway slam for a 20-point margin early in the second period, 31-11.
The Fighting Maroons were in full control of their UAAP rivals in their first meeting since the Season 85 Finals Game 3. The Blue Eagles could only come as close as 13 with 6:29 left but Alarcon scored seven straight points to keep Ateneo at bay.
Alarcon finished with 16 points and three rebounds as a total of five UP players scored in double figures including CJ Cansino, who had 14 points, to improve their record to 4-2 in Group II.
“What I saw is that after two losses we were able to bounce back from it. I was satisfied with our consistency today,” said UP coach Goldwin Monteverde. “Here in the preseason, every team is just gaining experience. That goes for us, that goes for Ateneo, that goes for everyone.”
Joseph Obasa was the lone bright spot for Ateneo with a double-double of 13 points and 11 rebounds, while Mason Amos tallied nine points and seven rebounds in their FilOil debut.
Ford Arao called the shots for the Blue Eagles as head coach Tab Baldwin is expected to return on Thursday when they take on National University, which improved to a 2-1 record after routing University of the East, 91-69.
John Galinato led three Bulldogs in double-digits with 15 points, as they forced 27 turnovers from the Red Warriors that were turned into 41 points to bounce back from their 86-107 loss to La Salle last Monday.
UE fell to 2-4 despite a 31-point outburst from Noy Remogat.
Meanwhile, La Salle remained unbeaten in seven games after pummeling the winless Faith Colleges of Batangas, 105-60.
The Green Archers’ big men continued to lead the way in the tournament as Kevin Quiambao posted 17 points and nine rebounds and Ben Phillips chipped in 12 points, four rebounds, two assists, and two steals. Their bench players combined for 65 points, outscoring the Batangas-based school, which remained winless in five games.
“We actually played lousy basketball today. It’s very disappointing to see our players play that way. We expected more. It’s not who we are. We should be better,” said La Salle coach Topex Robinson, even after they led by as much as 48.
“We cannot show up every day being a mediocre team. We have to always honor the game. What would have happened if we were playing Ateneo today and we played like that?” he added.
Jude Torrato led the Bravehearts with 15 points, four assists, and three steals.
In Group I, Enoch Valdez delivered 22 points, nine rebounds, and five steals as Lyceum kept Arellano University winless in the tournament, 82-68, for an improved 3-2 card.
Besides Valdez, Shawn Umali contributed 17 points, six rebounds, and three assists for the Pirates’ second-straight win.
“We had problems nung simula, pero kami, gusto naming maiwan na lahat nang yun sa dugout. Kaya pagdating ng second half, we regrouped and played as a team,” said LPU coach Gilbert Malabanan.
Arellano remained winless in four games amid Joshua Abastillas’ 17 points and seven rebounds.