UST stuns NU in Game 1 to close in UAAP women's basketball title | Inquirer Sports

UST stuns NU in Game 1 to close in UAAP women’s basketball title

/ 03:11 PM November 29, 2023

UST Tigresses' Kent Pastrana and Reynalymn Ferrer in Game 1 of the UAAP women's basketball Finals.

UST Tigresses’ Kent Pastrana and Reynalymn Ferrer in Game 1 of the UAAP women’s basketball Finals. –Marlo Cueto/

MANILA, Philippines — University of Santo Tomas picked the perfect time to end an 11-year losing streak to defending champion National University as it inched a win closer to claiming the UAAP Season 86 women’s basketball championship with a 76-72 victory in Game 1 on Wednesday at Mall of Asia Arena.

The Growling Tigresses weathered the late comeback attempt of the Lady Bulldogs, who erased a 73-65 deficit as Aloja Betanio’s triple and Stef Berberabe’s 3-of-4 trip from the line turned it into a two-point game, 73-71, with 1:10 remaining.


Rocel Dionisio stopped the bleeding as she converted Kent Pastrana’s good pass for a 75-71 breather then UST made the crucial stops that prevented NU from scoring a field goal including Brigette Santos’ clutch steal and split free throws to seal the win with 6.2 seconds left.


“I’m so happy of course that finally, meron kaming panalo against NU, which is most important because this is the championship series. So thank you sa mga girls, they really worked hard for this — the whole team.” said UST coach Haydee Ong, who beat UST for the first time. “Until the last second, na pwedeng humabol yung NU they kept their composure and di na nangyari yung last time, what happened and I’m just so happy.”

UST inched a win closer to ending a 17-year title drought and stopping a 20-game losing streak against the “eight-peat”-seeking NU. The last time the Espana-based team beat the powerhouse school was in Season 75, 74-73, last August 31, 2012.

UST Growling Tigresses in Game 1 of the UAAP women's basketball finals.

UST Growling Tigresses in Game 1 of the UAAP women’s basketball finals. –MARLO CUETO/

The Tigresses, who scored 27 points off their opponents’ 23 turnovers, try to end the Lady Bulldogs’ reign on Sunday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Pastrana led five UST double-digit scorers with 15 points, six rebounds, and four steals. Tacky Tacatac caught fire in the fourth, scoring 11 of her 14 points, while Tantoy Ferrer tallied 13 points, 14 rebounds, and five assists.

Santos chipped in 12 points, six rebounds, and four assists, and provided the team’s seven of 16 steals, as Nikki Villasin had 10 points.

It was NU’s first loss in a Finals game since 2013 when they lost the series to La Salle.


Camille Clarin led the Lady Bulldogs with 18 points, six assists, and five rebounds. Karl Pingol had 11 points and 10 rebounds, while Jainaba Konateh and Berberabe contributed eight points each and grabbed nine and seven rebounds, respectively. 

The scores:

UST (76) – Pastrana 15, Tacatac 14, Ferrer 13, Santos 10, Villasin 10, Dionisio 6, Maglupay 4, Amatong 2, Serrano 0, Soriano 0, Ambos 0, Bron 0.

NU (72) – Clarin 18, Pingol 11, Berberabe 8, Konateh 8, Betanio 7, Cayabyab 5, Surada 5, Fabruada 4, Canuto 3, Solis 3.

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Quarterscores: 20-12, 36-31, 54-51, 76-72

TAGS: NU Lady Bulldogs, UAAP Season 86, ust growling tigresses

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