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Eagles have mental edge against Archers

The defending champion Ateneo Blue Eagles will seek to further improve on their head-to-head record with their archrivals the La Salle Green Archers when they meet today in the 81st University Athletic Association of the Philippines men’s basketball tournament.

Tab Baldwin
The Blue Eagles have a 3-2 win-loss record against the Archers last season and a 48-37 mark over the years with their arch-rivals.

This gives the Blue Eagles the psychological edge and a great deal of confidence going into their  4 p.m. match at the Mall of Asia Arena.

They will come into the fight brimming with confidence after prevailing over the National University, 72-46, for their second straight win.

The Loyola dribblers showed how tough they are by quickly erecting a 15-point lead after two quarters as they limited the Bulldogs to just 18 points in the first 20 minute.

“I thought our defense was the way we wanted to be played. There’s no excuse to not play that way after this. It’s nice that we are able to set standards for ourselves,” said Ateneo head coach Tab Baldwin

The Blue Eagles will draw strength from the court leadership of Thirdy Ravena and Anton Asistio in their bid to claim their fifth win in six matches.

Meanwhile, the Green Archers have made adjustments some two weeks after missing the services of team captain Kib Montalbo, who sustained a fracture to his left thumb.

As Montalbo sits out for four to six weeks, the Green Archers have been getting big numbers from Aljun Melecio and Justine Baltazar.

“It’s early in the season. Kailangang ma-buildup ang team namin. I need the other guys to start contributing and this is the second game we have played without Kib,” said coach Louie Gonzales after the Green Archers won over the University of Santo Tomas Growling Tigers, 99-72.  

Earlier, University of the East meets University of Santo Tomas at 12 noon in a battle among lower-placed teams.

Topics: Ateneo Blue Eagles , La Salle Green Archers , 81st University Athletic Association of the Philippines , Tab Baldwin
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