[Posted: 08 October 2009]
Game 3 for Ateneo Blue Eagles and this Season’s Men’s Senior (and Juniors, by the way) Basketball Champions!
Ateneo never relinquished the lead all throughout. It never cede its desire to get back on UE. It did not desert its title from last season and instead went bact-to-back since 1988! They had a chance in 2004 but failed. Five-years since, now it can be said that Ateneo, since the introduction of the final four format, joins FEU, UST and La Salle in having back-to-back titles.
First: ADMU (21) – UE (17)
In the first quarter, it was almost all Rabeh who was responsible for almost half of Ateneo’s points. Towards the end, Paul Lee of UE made quite a chase to cut down the lead of Ateneo but was not enough to take the lead or to make it even.
Second: ADMU (40) – UE (25)
The bench of Ateneo which included Salamat, Buenafe and Long proved their worth having a 11-0 run at 2:46 remaining. It could have been more were it not for some fancy yet unsuccessful shots of Long.
Third: ADMU (57) – UE (41)
This is the break-away quarter for Ateneo. While UE made adjustments in moving and sharing the ball better, it was not enough to match the combination of Jai Reyes and Rabeh Al-Husaini to increase their lead more. At this point, Pari Llagas of UE is still zero in the field, except for some converted free throws. Paul Lee (UE) made some points but remained inconsistent. If at all, it was only Elmer Espiritu (UE) who was making UE alive in the game.
Fourth: ADMU (71) – UE (58)
Ateneo continued its great defense and brought its lead to 20-points, the highest, at the 3:30 mark. While some good plays came from UE, it was not even close to a serious threat to grab the lead or the win. At the dying minutes of the game, Ateneo was already assured of its back-to-back title and just run some plays waiting for the official time to end.
Below is a video of the last few minutes of Game 3:
[Posted: 04 October 2009]
Game 2 for UE. 88-68.
UE forces a rubber match against Ateneo on Thursday. From the start until the end, it was a convincing Game-2 victory by UE. They may have been definitely outnumbered in Araneta but they definitely dominated the board! At the end of Game-2, UE’s yearning for a title after 24-years was more evident than Ateneo’s desire for back-to-back!
First Quarter: UE (18) – ADMU (15)
UE took the first and the last basket of what was a relatively low-scoring quarter.
Second Quarter: ADMU (38) – UE (37)
Comparatively a better quarter than the first, and a better half than the first game. No team had a major run with Jai Reyes responsible with the lone point lead of Ateneo at the end of the quarter.
Third Quarter: UE (63) – ADMU (53)
UE owned it with its lead increased to 10-points at the end of the quarter and from there on, it never looked back. Ateneo started to get frustrated with unsuccessful baskets and unnecessary fouls being committed.
Fourth Quarter: UE (88) – ADMU (68)
UE took care of its lead and increased even more to the disappointment of Ateneo that reflected in their game. The latter’s defense continued to collapse and three-point attempts not converted. Compared to the other quarters, this was a walk it the park for UE that sealed its Game-2 victory!
Game II Sidelights: UAAP Men’s Senior Basketball Awards
I. Rookie of the Year – Jeric Teng (UST)
II. Mythical Five
1. Paul Lee (UE)
2. Dylan Ababou (UST)
3. Aldrech Ramos (FEU)
4. Elmer Espiritu (UE)
5. Rabeh Al-Husaini (ADMU)
Videos of the last 2-minutes of Game 2 (2-parts):
[Postscript: videos being uploaded]
[Posted: 01 October 2009]
Game I for Ateneo. Final Score: 78-71.
Ateneo is determined to go back-to-back! UE is inspired to end 24-years of title drought! At the end of the first game, it was Ateneo who wanted to have a better start in the finals series.
First: 24 (ADMU) – 11 (UE)
At the starting minutes of the first quarter, it looked like how a championship game should be played, with consecutives baskets and good play from both ends. In the last minutes, however, a 15-2 run for Ateneo after the last time-out somehow took out UE of the game. Paul Lee, the season’s most improved player and the hero for UE in the play-offs against FEU apparently was not able to deliver.
Second: 35 (UE) – 34 (ADMU)
In the second quarter, tables have turned, UE have finally warmed-up and Ateneo got a dose of its own medicine. Finally, Paul Lee started to get baskets after 15-minutes of play. UE had a 19-2 run to snatch the lead by a point from a 17-points deficit. Three-point shooting, great zone defense and good ball hustle finally showed why UE deserves to be in the Finals.
Third: 57 (ADMU) – 53 (UE)
Third Quarter was more even, in complete contrast to the first two quarters, but Ateneo regained the lead by 4-points. Almost everyone from both teams contributed to their respective scores but it was Jai Reyes who made most points for Ateneo.
Fourth: 78 (ADMU) – 71 (UE)
Ateneo came out stronger on perimeter points. Jai Reyes continued to shoot well and the championship experience of Rabah Al-Husaini sealed Ateneo’s first win in the finals!
Last Two-Minutes Videos of Game I in 3-parts:
I Sidelights [ Special Awards]:
[* - with two special awards]
1. Maaasahan Player of the Year – *Erik Salamat (ADMU)
2. Most Improved Player of the Year – Paul Lee (UE)
3. Sixth Man of the Year – Nico Salva (ADMU)
4. Best Defensive Player of the Year – *Elmer Espiritu (UE)
5. Doubles Dou of the Year – Rabah Al-Husaini (ADMU) & *Eric Salamat (ADMU)
6. Lead Scorer of the Year – Dylan Ababou (UST)
7. Three Point Shooter of the Year – Jeric Fortuna (UST)
8. Highlight Player of the Year – *Elmer Espiritu