Ateneo dethrones archrival La Salle to claim ninth UAAP basketball title

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, December 3) — The Ateneo Blue Eagles are the new UAAP basketball kings.

The Blue Eagles edged out archrivals De La Salle University Green Archers, 88-86, in Game 3 of the men's seniors finals Sunday at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.

With the victory, Ateneo collected its ninth championship since joining the collegiate league in 1978.

Thirdy Ravena, who was named Finals Most Valuable Player, tallied 17 points and eight rebounds for Ateneo.

Their disciplined style of play propelled the Blue Eagles to a 24-14 advantage at the end of the first quarter.

Not to be outdone, the Green Archers made their furious rally to slice the deficit within striking distance.

A buzzer beater by Anton Asistio extended Ateneo's edge going into the halftime break.

Both squads engaged in a shootout affair with the score ending 66-all after three quarters.

With the game still up for grabs, Isaac Go gave the Blue Eagles a breathing room in the dying seconds of the contest.

La Salle's back-to-back triples were too late as time was on Ateneo's side in the end.

Matt Nieto and Chibueze Ikeh contributed 14 points and 12 points for the Blue Eagles, respectively.

Ben Mbala led the Green Archers with 19 markers and 14 boards.

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