Ateneo survives Taiwan’s NCCU to set up finals clash vs Japan’s Tokai

Published August 10, 2022, 11:05 PM

by Carlo Anolin

Ateneo showed steely nerves down the stretch to survive Taiwan’s National Chengchi University, 88-78, in the World University Basketball Series (WUBS) Wednesday, Aug. 10, at the Yoyogi National Stadium in Tokyo, Japan.

(Photo from WUBS)

The Blue Eagles remained undefeated in two games after a 125-39 romp of Universitas Pelita Harapan of Indonesia Tuesday, Aug. 9.

The recent win also propelled the UAAP Season 84 first runner-up to a finals showdown against Japanese side Tokai University, which earlier defeated both NCCU and UPH as well.

Ateneo overcame an 11-point deficit before rallying back in the payoff period behind the efforts of Kai Ballungay, who dropped 21 points apart from his seven rebounds.

Nigerian talent Joseph Obasa tallied 17 points, 15 rebounds, and three blocks while Dave Ildefonso and Paul Garcia scored 14 and 12 points, respectively.

Mouhamed Lamine Mbaye paced NCCU, Taiwan’s back-to-back champions in its University Basketball Association, with 20 points and nine rebounds while three other members scored in double-digits.

The Eagles uncorked a fiery 13-3 run and recovered from their early slump come the fourth period capped by a Ballungay alley-oop basket before firing clutch free throws in the waning minutes.

 
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